Bulldogs Continue Recruiting Success

In the wake of Renardo Sidney's signing with the Bulldogs of Mississippi State another dominant big man has also offered his pledge to Coach Rick Stansbury and his staff. IMG Academy center John Riek is expected to finalize his college commitment later today.

John Riek, a native of Sudan, officially visited Mississippi State along with IMG basketball coach Dan Barto this past weekend. Coach Barto reports that the five star center has made his college decision.

"John has committed to and signed with Mississippi State," said Barto. "His guardian is supposed to sign some time today."

Barto reports that John should flourish in the Bulldogs' style of play.

"He is going to be able to play as a true back to the basket five in college," said Barto. "Mississippi State has a good history of developing big men and that was an important part of it. They have had a string of four or five post players go on to play professionally. They have had a lot of 1st team All-SEC post players."

The official visit to Starkville was an eye opening experience for both John and his coach.

"I flew up there on Friday," said Barto. "John was real impressed with the set up there. Their new academic center is very impressive as were the accomodations they have for incoming freshmen. I really like the feel for the Humphrey Coliseum and they have plans for a practice facility. All of the facilities they have in place are already real nice."

Reik was once billed as a possible lottery pick in the NBA draft, but a knee injury derailed those plans. Any talk about John bolting to the NBA after one collegiate season appears to be premature.

"I just can't see anything like that happening right now based on where he is," said Barto. "He is going to need some time to recover and that is one of the things that really impressed us about Mississippi State. John was really comfortable with their medical people and the strength coach there. They are going to work with him to get him back where he needs to be."

Riek chose Mississippi State over offers from Cincinnati, Providence and Pittsburgh.


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