Twilley, Smith and Mishler round out class
JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (April 12, 2006) - ETSU men's basketball head coach Murry Bartow announced Wednesday that the Buccaneers have completed their 2006-07 recruiting class, receiving national letters of intent from three high school seniors.
Guard Dequan Twilley (
"We had some specific needs to fill and we really think these final three certainly add a great deal to our program," said Bartow, whose team is coming off a 15-13 season that included a stop at the top of the Atlantic Sun Conference standings midway through the campaign. "We were very happy with our two early signees, and what we really like about this group as a whole are four players who are their school's all-time leading scorers (Twilley, Smith, Mishler, Williams). That's pretty unusual."
Twilley, a 6-foot-0, 170-pound point guard, wrapped up an impressive high school career by helping lead his Shelbyville Central High squad to the Tennessee Class AAA state championship game this past season. In that contest, Twilley scored 31 points, including a 3-pointer in the final seconds that sent the game into overtime.
A point guard with good vision and passing skills, Twilley finished his high school career as Shelbyville's all-time leader in points (1,959), assists (607) and steals (258). A first-team all-state selection by the Tennessee Sports Writers Association and the Associated Press, he averaged 18.9 points and five assists per game his senior season, earning recruiting looks from
"Dequan is a consummate point guard," Bartow said. "Obviously, with Tim (Smith) leaving us, we felt we needed another point. Dequan is a pass first, score second point guard, but he has the ability to score the ball as evidenced by his 31 in the state championship game. He's really looking to lead a team and get his teammates involved. He was a big piece of the puzzle for us."
Smith, a 6-foot-6, 205-pound swingman from
As a senior, Smith scored 777 points (26.8 ppg), grabbed 414 rebounds (14.2 rpg), dished out 163 assists (5.6 apg) and collected 100 steals (3.45 spg). He earned all-state honors in 2004, 2005 and 2006, and is one of three finalists for Mr. Show Me Basketball.
"Mike is an intriguing player," Bartow said. "The number one thing is he's a two-sport star (football and basketball). In football, he was a quarterback and linebacker, so he went both ways and has toughness to him. On the floor, he has a lot of versatility. He played some at point for his high school, but at 205, he is big enough to play (forward). He's got a big, thick body, but he's capable of making threes. The one game I went to see him he made nine."
Mishler, a 6-foot-8, 215-pound forward from
A first-team all-area selection and honorable mention all-state, Mishler was a unanimous all-conference pick and team MVP three-straight years. With a left-handed shot, his ability to score on the inside caught ETSU's attention.
"Blake is an interesting pickup," Bartow said. "He's a guy that's going to have to add strength, but he's really been coached well on the defensive end of the floor. He can block shots, but he still has the ability to score on the other end. That's something we've needed, a guy that can score with his back to the basket."
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