Mississippi State, with just two true forwards returning after this coming basketball season, Michael Ignerski and Mario Austin, were looking to land a couple of forwards and landed two of the best in the junior college ranks. According to Okaloosa-Walton CC head basketball coach Bruce Stewart, "we have two of the best inside players on one team in the country. I don't feel like anybody has two bookends like we have."
Coach Stewart expanded on the ability of both players.
"Kei Madison has a huge upside. For a 6-foot-9 kid he is a very good ball handler. He is good off the dribble. His hands and handling skills are very good. That is unusual for a 6-foot-9 kid. Out to about 15 to 16 feet he is a good shooter. He doesn't have three-point range. He has decent quickness and very good jumping ability. He runs like a deer. He is a good athlete.
"Brandon is a 6-foot-8, 230-pound power forward. Actually he plays a little center for us also. I don't think he could play it in the SEC. He is a terrific all-around player in that he scores, rebounds, blocks shots and plays hard. He is also a good kid and a good student. He has the entire package. He will be a plus to any team that he joins. He will be such a great addition to any program."
Coach Stewart feels that both players are SEC caliber and can play immediately. "Both of them are that type player."
There has been some talk that the very talented 6-foot-8 Madison might go directly to the NBA after this season. According to Coach Stewart, who has coached in the CBA and has coached NBA-type players, "I don't think he has the upper body strength and shooting range to do that right now. Maybe in a year or two, after he has been at Mississippi State, he would be ready."
According to Coach Stewart, both players were heavily recruited with Madison choosing Mississippi State over Cincinnati and Vincent choosing Mississippi State over Charlotte, Auburn, Ole Miss and Kansas State.
Both chose Mississippi State for several reasons. "In Kei's case, he wanted to play in the SEC and wanted to stay close to home," said Coach Stewart. "He is from Columbiana, Alabama which is right below Birmingham. Brandon, after visiting several schools, decided that he wanted to play with Kei and wanted to stay close to home. Brandon is from New Orleans."
Madison and Vincent join Mississippi State's two other verbal commitments 6-foot-2 point guard Stephen Cowherd from Stoneman Douglas HS in Coral Springs, Florida and 6-foot-4 wing guard Sam Richardson from Hinds (MS) AHS. Because they can only sign four players this recruiting season, Mississippi State has now completed their recruiting for this year.
Gene Swindoll is the owner of Gene's Page (http://mississippistate.theinsiders.com), the unofficial source for Mississippi State sports on the internet. You can contact him by email at email@example.com.