Pitt completes 2007 class with Cassin Diggs

The University of Pittsburgh coaching staff was actively searching for a player to fill the sizeable shoes of standout center Aaron Gray. It appears they found that player with massive 6-foot-10 inch, 260 pound center Cassin Diggs decided to verbally commit to the Panthers on Sunday night. Diggs and his head coach spoke with the PantherDigest.com about his decision.

"I visited Pitt a week ago and I really enjoyed my visit. I decided to pull the trigger and commit on Sunday night," stated massive center prospect Cassin Diggs (6-foot-10 inches, 260 pounds) from Cloud Community College in Concordia, KS.

Diggs was the fifth and final player to join the Panthers basketball class of 2007. He joins 6-foot-10 inch center Gary McGhee from Anderson, IN, 6-foot-7 inch forward Darnell Dodson from Greenbelt, MD, 6-foot-7 inch forward DeJuan Blair from Pittsburgh, PA and 6-foot-4 inch guard Bradley Wanamaker from Philadelphia, PA.

"I chose Pitt because of the coaching staff and the opportunity to play early," said Diggs. "I really like Coach (Jamie) Dixon and I feel comfortable with him. I know that Aaron Gray graduates after this season and I want to step in and keep Pitt rolling next season."

Location seemed to factor heavily into his decision as well. Diggs is originally from Williamsport, PA. Cassin added, "I have been away from my home for three years. Pittsburgh is close to home and my family can come see me play. That was really important to me."

Diggs averaged 14 points and 7 rebounds per game as a freshman. He shot 74% from the free throw line as well. The Thunderbirds finished with a 24-9 record last season.

"Coach Dixon told me he wants me to come in and do some damage. Pitt's going to need to fill in for Gray in the low post. I know the Big East is a physical conference with some of the top talent in the nation. I'm a physical player and I feel I'm ready for the challenge."

When asked to describe his strengths, he stated, "I have great hands and footwork. I like to think I have some great moves in the paint as well. I think I can help the team next year."

Diggs was truly impressed with is visit to Pitt a week ago. "I really enjoyed my visit. I was able to get a good look at the Pitt campus and I spent time with their academic advisors," he said. "I was impressed with the number of players and junior college transfers that graduate. That was important to me."

"I was able to meet the team and hang out with them. I thought I fit in very well. They were able to show me where I would live and go to class."

Diggs stated that UNLV, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, South Florida, St. Bonaventure, Nebraska and Bradley were heavily recruiting him.

"The Panthers landed a great kid and a player that will greatly fit their program," stated Cloud Community College Head Basketball Coach Kevin Muff.

"Cassin is a big 6-foot-10 inch, 260 pound center. He's a big, physical player that will help Pitt next year. He's still has a ways to improve, but he's aware of it. That's the great thing about Cassin. He's a hard worker and willing to get better."

"Cassin has great body control, he can run the floor and he's very skilled for his size. He can use his left hand and that makes him tough to defend," stated Muff. "I think he's going to do well in the Big East. Most of the big men in our league are smaller. They are roughly 6-foot-7 to 6-foot-8 inches tall. They are quick and sometimes give him difficulty. When he goes man on man with a larger, taller player, he dominates them due to his skill."

"Cassin is a character kid that will fit into the Pittsburgh program. He's a team first player and he's happy with his decision."

Harry G. Psaros can be contacted at harrypsaros@msn.com.

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