In addition, two time 1st team All-MAC selection Tim Pollitz decided to forgo a promising pro stint to pursue another career path. Same for 2009 All-MAC center Tyler Dierkers. Finally, current Miami junior forward Julian Mavunga was named to the preseason All-MAC list and is certainly on his way to a long professional career.
The RedHawks are now looking for the next great star post to lead the MAC's most storied program. The post spot also just happens to be Miami's biggest need. As it stands right now, next year the only post players on the roster will be Mavunga and two little used posts (Drew McGhee and Vince Legarza).
Miami's recent 2010 recruiting class, ranked as one of the best recruiting classes in the MAC, noticeably lacked a true post (point guards Quentin Rollins and Chris McHenry, 2G Josh Sewell, and small forward Jon Harris). Miami's only signing in the 2011 class is point guard Brian Sullivan.
As such, whatever post player Miami lands in the class of 2011 will be have to contribute immediately. Therefore, Miami needs not to just land any post player, but a player who plays at the level of the other great posts that have played for Coach Coles.
Miami's top target to fill the role as the next great wing for the RedHawks is Jared Tadlock, a 6-10, 220 pound center from Goldsboro (NC) Charis Prep. Tadlock has confirmed that Miami has made him a priority.
In order to get a closer look at the campus, the Miami staff invited Tadlock and his family to the college town of Oxford, Ohio (near Cincinnati and Dayton) last week for an official visit and to watch the RedHawks defeat rival Xavier Musketeers 75-64 in Millett Hall in the annual battle between the non-BCS powerhouses. After the victory Tadlock was invited in to the lockerroom to celebrate the victory with the team.
Tadlock talked about his experience during the two days of the visit:
"We covered about everything. I got to meet the coaches and see what they think of the program the next four years. We went to all the local restaurants. I think I put on ten pounds. Miami played a great game against Xavier. I loved the atmosphere with their fans."
The Miami staff explained the RedHawks vision for the future:
"They want to be in a spot where they are winning MAC championships and be at the level of when Wally Szczerbiak played. They felt if I chose Miami that I would be a piece of the puzzle that gets them to the top of the conference."
He liked just about everything involved with Miami basketball. He said, "Great team and great fan support. The campus is beautiful."
Tadlock is a versatile 4-5 player. Tadlock said, "I can play face up going out 15 to 18 feet for a shot. I am also a decent rebounder." Tadlock likens himself to the style of Gordon Hayward, Mavunga's high school teammate in Brownsburg, Indiana. He has been working to improve his ball handling and increase his overall weight.
Of those schools, Tadlock said last month that "Miami is for sure" his leader. He said then, "Miami has a strong basketball tradition and has the potential to be a good tournament contender the next few years. They also play great teams so I will have a great opportunity to upset these teams." He said he primarily talks to assistant coach Jimmy Lallathin.
The North Carolina standout has narrowed his choices of school to Miami and Evansville. He will visit Evansville this weekend and will make his decision when he comes back.
In his choice of Evansville, he has the opportunity to help rebuild a once proud program that has long been on hard times. Evansville was last in the MVC last year and has not had a winning conference record since 1999.
In his choice of Miami, the RedHawks have had only one losing season in the MAC (8-10 in 2000) in Tadlock's lifetime.
Tadlock said he is looking for a school that will help him grow as a player and has a coaching staff that will help him take his game to the next level.
Tadlock was very impressed with the play of Mavunga, who like Tadlock, is a post who can step outside. Mavunga's development in the two years from a raw freshman to a MAC player of the year candidate was not lost on Tadlock. "He was very good, very impressive. He was good on the perimeter and in the low post." Mavunga had 24 points and 8 rebounds that night. Tadlock added that he looks forward as a frosh next year to learning under Mavunga.
Like most Miami recruiting targets, Tadlock is a strong student. He boasts a 3.9 grade point average.
In college, Tadlock would like to major in graphic design or something else with art. He added that "Miami of Ohio has a great graphic design program from what I have researched." On his visit he was given the opportunity to visit the graphic design school.
Tadlock is familiar with Ohio. His family has traveled extensively and he has lived in Columbus as well as Denver and other places throughout the country.
Stayed tuned to RedHawk Insider as we follow Jared Tadlock in the future.
Follow T. Tod Mollaun on twitter at http://www.twitter.com/mollautt