Signing of forward Jakeenan Gant leaves MU smiling

11/13/2013 4:26 PM

11/13/2013 11:31 PM

Jakeenan Gant signed with Missouri on Wednesday after all.

Gant, a 6-foot-8 forward from Springfield, Ga., was expected to wait until later in the week to sign in a ceremony at his school, but he put pen to his national letter of intent and became a Tiger on the first day of the NCAA’s early signing period.

“Jakeenan really fits our program in all aspects of his game and his approach,” Missouri coach Frank Haith said in a news release. “He’s an outstanding young man from a great family and just has that competitive drive in everything he does. He was the top player in Georgia as a junior and will keep getting better and better as he matures and adds strength.”

Gant, a senior at Effingham County High School, is ranked No. 47 nationally in the 2014 recruiting class by Rivals.com.

Gant, who committed to Missouri in August, averaged 17.9 points and 9.3 rebounds along with 4.2 blocks as a junior and is the reigning Georgia AAAAA player of the year after helping the Rebels reach the state semifinals.

Namon Wright, a 6-foot-4 shooting guard from Los Angeles, is also expected to sign with the Tigers this week. He is ranked 87th overall by Rivals.com.

Oubre signs with KU

It might be unfair to declare Kelly Oubre as Kansas’ de facto replacement for Andrew Wiggins, who will almost certainly enter the NBA Draft after this season.

But it is fair to say that KU coach Bill Self has high expectations for Oubre, a 6-foot-7 small forward who signed with Kansas on Wednesday.

“We think Kelly has a chance to impact our program in a way that very few freshmen have,” Self said, announcing the signing in a news release. “He’s very well-rounded. He’s an outstanding student and we all believe and know he will be a tremendous addition to our program.”

A late riser in the class of 2014, Oubre is currently rated as the No. 12 overall recruit in the country, according to Rivals.com. Last season, he averaged 22.7 points per game for Bush High School in Richmond, Texas, before transferring to Findlay Prep in the Las Vegas area for his senior season. In five games, he’s averaging 23 points and 7.4 rebounds.

Oubre committed to Kansas in October after drawing heavy interest from Kentucky. He becomes the first member of KU’s 2014 class, but the Jayhawks could be on the verge of more. Three of their top targets — including Chicago center Jahlil Okafor and Minnesota point guard Tyus Jones — will make their college decisions Friday.

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