WSU hoops: How will Kent use his 3 new slots?

WITH THE REGULAR signing period in basketball starting April 15 and three new spots now available at Washington State, it's full speed ahead for Cougar basketball recruiting. How might Ernie Kent fill those three new spots?

With F Aaron Cheatum, G Trevor Dunbar and G Jackie Davis asking for and receiving permission to transfer, we project Ernie Kent to go after a big, banger-type and a combo guard for two of those open spots.

The third spot is a little more iffy in our minds – the most likely scenario would be to pick up another guard or swing player, but it could also be dictated by the time-honored “best player available” when it comes to filling out a recruiting class.

In looking at what the Cougs have coming back, in the post you have Josh Hawkinson (6-10, 245); Junior Longrus (6-7, 240); Brett Boese (6-7, 230) and 6-10, 215-pound center Valentine Izundu (who spent this past year sitting out per NCAA transfer rules after coming to WSU from Houston.)

Already signed from the early period and joining that group this coming season are Robert Franks (6-7, 210) and Derrien King (6-8, 175). (Jeff Pollard [6-8, 215] also signed but the expectation was for him to head to prep school for a year before joining the Cougs).

So what’s missing from that post grouping?

A big-bodied banger, one who can effectively go against the giant center-types in the paint.

Izudu is a shot-blocker and 6-10 but he’s also just 215-pounds. The closest thing you have to a banger in that list is Longrus but he’s 6-7.

At guard -- minus Dunbar and Davis and with DaVonte Lacy and Dexter Kernich-Drew graduating -- the Cougs suddenly have but three scholarship players returning this season. They are: Ike Iroegbu, Ny Redding and Que Johnson. Johnson is capable of playing both shooting guard and swing man.

Already signed and joining that guard group for this coming season is Renard Suggs (6-3, 200), who is expected to take up at least some of the scoring slack of Lacy.

The regular signing period runs from April 15 – May 20.

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