Lions Land “Monumental” Class

Chambers and his staff nab two four-star prospects and one three-star recruit in what may be the best recruiting class in school history.

Pat Chambers on Recruiting


Everything went as expected for Penn State on basketball Signing Day Wednesday, which was great news for the Nittany Lions.

Fourth-year coach Pat Chambers had received verbal commitments from three blue-chippers, and all signed, just as expected. They included four-star shooting guard Josh Reaves, four-star center/forward Mike Watkins and three-star shooting guard Deividas Zemgulis.

It is arguably the best class in Penn State history.

“I'm so proud of my staff,” Chambers said. “For three years, these guys have worked so hard at knocking on doors … and getting the phone hung up on them and people not responding to them. That is hard to swallow sometimes. But they kept a great attitude, kept working hard, they stayed positive. We just law little victories, small successes, and if you do that, that one 'yes' will finally come. That second 'yes' will finally come.

“It's a monumental day … for this program and the history of this program,” he added.

Here is a quick look at the three players Chambers -- along with assistants Brian Daly, Keith Urgo and Dwayne Anderson (shown above, center) -- signed Wednesday. SCOUTing reports are compiled from Scout.com and FOS reports.

Josh Reaves

The Facts: SG/6-4/185/Paul VI HS/Fairfax, Va.

Position Ranking: 21 (four star)

SCOUTing Report: An impressive leaper, Reaves (also shown at top of page, left) is a very good athlete. He also moves well laterally and at 6-4 he has wide shoulders and a lengthy set of arms. All those attributes help him on the defensive end, where he's a very good on-the-ball defender. He also rebounds well from the wing. Offensively, Reaves shoots the ball well and with confidence from three. He's also good in transition, where he can use his athleticism and finishing ability.

Strengths: Range, athleticism, defense

Must Improve: Ball handling, mid-range game, shooting off dribble

Chambers Says: “Josh is a high-level player whose versatility on the floor makes him a guy who I expect to be a stat sheet stuffer for us. His athleticism and speed make him an excellent defender, which allows him to get out in transition and attack the rim -- where he is at his best.”

Mike Watkins

The Facts: C/6-8/225/Math, Civics & Sciences Charter/Philadelphia

Position Ranking: 23 (four star)

SCOUTing Report: Watkins isn't about finesse. Competing with Team Philly in AAU ball, he demonstrated the prototypical Brotherly Love style by chopping it up with opponents and playing a rugged game with complete alertness on the task at hand. We didn't observe much from him as a primary scorer, but he utilizes his quick hops and muscle to finish over the top and through contact. He shoots his free throws with prime technique and lofts a very soft ball through the net. That bodes very well for him and the Lions. Defensively, he blocks some shots, although he'd project as more of a force in that regard were he a couple inches taller.

Strengths: Athleticism, long arms and big hands, good frame

Must Improve: Size and strength, offensive skills

Chambers Says: “Mike is an elite athlete who will provide us another rim protector. He excels at running the floor in transition and is a phenomenal finisher. It's great to have another Philly product in our program.”

Deividas Zemgulis

The Facts: SF/6-6/220/St. Mary's Ryken HS/Leonardtown, Md.

Position Ranking: NR (three star)

SCOUTing Report: Zemgulis (also shown at top of page, right), who goes by “Davis,” has a strong body and good size for a perimeter shooter. He's a shot-maker to three with excellent form and good range. He definitely is filling a need for Penn State. He moves to get himself open. Further, he is a solid help defender who shows spurts of athleticism, though his on-the-ball defense needs work. He is also used to the big stage. A native of Lithuania, he represented his home country at the Under-16 European Championships.

Strengths: Range, size and strength for his position, long arms

Must Improve: Ball-handling, on-the-ball defense, still mastering English

Chambers Says: “Davis brings us a bigger wing who is a premier three-point shooter with unlimited range. His competiveness and toughness are things our staff loves about him. His high basketball IQ will help us from day one.”


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