Wyoming Cowboy Basketball Adds Four Recruits
Three prep school players, including a pair of teammates, plus a junior college guard signed with the Wyoming Cowboy men’s basketball team Wednesday.
Head coach Allen Edwards released the latest additions of Bradley Belt, Brandon Porter, Tariq Johnson and Jake Hendricks to the men’s roster on the first day of the spring signing period. These four recruits combined with Trevon “TJ” Taylor, who signed with the Pokes last November, gives Wyoming five new faces on next season’s roster.
Coach Edwards visited with the media Wednesday afternoon about this group of players.
The newest players feature Washington Academy (Greenville, NC) teammates Bradley Belt and Brandon Porter. Belt is a 6-4, 205 pound combo guard, while Porter is a 6-8, 190 pound forward. The two visited Laramie last November and signed Wednesday. Belt is originally from Huntsville, AL, while Porter hails from Virginia Beach, VA.
Belt was ranked as a three-star recruit by Rivals.com. He averaged 29.4 points per game and shot 42 percent beyond the arc last season. Belt added 3.3 assists per game.
Wyoming assistant coach Jermaine Kimbrough praised Belt’s attributes in a release from the university.
“Bradley (Belt) is a dynamic guard and is what I call a triple threat in that he can dribble, pass and shoot,” UW assistant coach Jermaine Kimbrough said. “He has great athleticism that can be expected to play in the Mountain West Conference. He brings a great level of leadership on both ends of the floor.”
Porter averaged 23 points, 8.7 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 3.1 steals per game this past season. He shot 39 percent from three.
UW assistant coach Jeremy Shyatt compared Porter to two recent Cowboys in a release from the university.
“Brandon (Porter) brings a great deal of versatility,” Wyoming assistant coach Jeremy Shyatt said. “He really fits the mold of an Alan Herndon and Hayden Dalton. He can dribble, pass and shoot, and with his size he really brings a lot to the table. When he is on the floor he makes the whole unit extremely versatile.”
Also part of the latest signees is Mount Zion (MD) Prep product Tariq Johnson. He’s listed as a shooting guard at 6-6 and 205 pounds. Johnson is from College Park, MD in the Washington D.C. area. He averaged 17 points and seven rebounds per game last season and was a 1,000 point scorer in two seasons at Kent Island High School.
Kimbrough likes Johnson’s versatility and leadership ability.
“Tariq (Johnson) is a big body guard, who is a great leader and leads his team by example,” Kimbrough said. He is one of the guys that can play numerous positions that can shoot the ball and has great athletic ability. He has a great spirit that fits our culture.”
The last addition is 6-5, 180 pound guard Jake Hendricks from Smithfield, UT. He played at the College of Southern Idaho the last two years and will have two years of eligibility remaining. Hendricks just helped CSI to the National Junior College Championship game. He averaged 12.7 points and 3.8 rebounds each game and earned All-Region honors. Hendricks also set the school record at CSI with 191 career three-pointers with 108 of those this past season. He started all 36 games.
Kimbrough believes Hendricks brings a lot of skill to the Wyoming backcourt.
“Jake (Hendricks) is a guy that is going space the floor for us,” Kimbrough said. “He is a guy that played point guard in high school and his ability to handle the ball along with come off ball screens makes him a threat. He can really shoot the basketball. He played and competed for a national championship in junior college and comes from a great program that will benefit from our player development here at UW.”
UW still has three scholarships available during this signing period that runs through May 16. Edwards says they’re looking at a lead guard, shooting guard and skilled “four” at forward. The Cowboys may sign another prep school player, but are also considering graduate transfers and junior college players for their remaining spots.