Wednesday marked the beginning of the second national letter of intent signing period for local college basketball programs, and several schools announced new additions.
Utah's lone signee Wednesday was Chris Reyes, a 6-foot-7 forward from Citrus (Calif.) College. Reyes, who redshirted at Saint Mary's before transferring to Citrus, will have three years of eligibility at Utah. He averaged 18 points and 12 rebounds last season and was named Western State Conference South MVP.
"We are extremely excited to welcome Chris Reyes and his family to our Utah basketball program," head coach Larry Krystkowiak said in a press release. "Chris' hard work and passion for the game caught our eye early on. He has an element of toughness and athleticism that is needed with this team. He rebounds the ball relentlessly on both (ends) of the floor and also (brings) tremendous versatility to our roster.
"Most importantly, Chris is a great person, and has high character with a phenomenal family upbringing," he added.
Reyes chose the Utes over Arizona State, Boise State and Utah State.
During the early signing period, Utah added Brekkott Chapman (6-8, forward, Roy HS), Kyle Kuzma (6-9, forward, Rise Academy, Pa.) and Isaiah Wright (6-2, point guard, Borah HS, Idaho).
BYU did not announce any signees Wednesday. Up until a couple of weeks ago, the Cougars found themselves with a scholarship crunch — 14 players and only 13 scholarships. But that issue was short-lived, as junior guard Matt Carlino announced his decision to transfer for his senior year.
Last November, BYU signed five high school players — TJ Haws (6-4, guard, Lone Peak HS), Payton Dastrup (6-9 forward, Mountain View HS, Arizona), Ryan Andrus (6-9, forward, American Fork HS), Jake Toolson (6-5, guard, Highland HS, Arizona), and Dalton Nixon (6-7, forward, Orem HS). Four of those players are planning to serve LDS missions before enrolling. Andrus will join the Cougars next season and play one year before serving a mission.
The Aggies secured one recruit on signing day, 6-foot-9 center Elston Jones from Millennium High in Goodyear, Ariz.
Jones earned all-region honors and was an honorable mention all-state selection his junior year, but was injured his senior season and only played seven games. He averaged 14 points, 14 rebounds and four blocks per game at Millennium.
"Elston is a versatile big man who can score at the block, face up on the perimeter and has excellent passing skills," USU coach Stew Morrill said in a press release. "He knows how important size players are in our system and wants to be coached to reach his potential."
Last November, the Aggies inked David Collette (6-8, forward, Murray HS), Sam Merrill (6-4, guard, Bountiful HS), Henry Bolton (6-2, guard, St. Andrews HS, Rhode Island), Julion Pearre (6-3, guard, McKinney North HS, Texas), Darius Perkins (6-2, guard, Miami Dade College, Florida) and Chris Smith (6-4, guard, Yuba CC, California.)
The Southern Utah men’s basketball program received a commitment from one player Wednesday. Jeff Nibo, a 6-foot-5 wing from Chaffey College in California, has signed to play for the Thunderbirds next season.
"We are excited to welcome Jeff as the newest member of the Thunderbirds," said SUU coach Nick Robinson. "He comes from a great family, has been developed by coach Jeff Kline at the highest level of the CCCAA, and brings needed experience to our program."
Neither Weber State nor Utah Valley announced any signees Wednesday.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Twitter: @BrandonCGurney
Copyright 2015, Deseret News Publishing Company