Bartow announces signing of Jones, Ward to 2008-09 class
Saturday, November 17, 2007


                JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Nov. 17, 2007) - ETSU head basketball coach Murry Bartow announced Saturday that the Buccaneers have received signed national letters of intent from two prospects for the 2008-09 season.


            Shooting guard Jarvis Jones (Memphis) and forward J.C. Ward (Marietta, Ga.) represent the first two signings for the Bucs in the 2008-09 recruiting class. Jones, a standout at Mitchell High School, has led his prep team to 58 wins over the last two seasons and sports a 50-point game in his prep career, while Ward, a star for Marietta High School, is a tenacious post player and has averaged a double-double in each of the last two seasons.


            "We really like this start to our recruiting class," Bartow said. "Jarvis and J.C. are players that can help us with both our perimeter and inside games. Both come from quality programs with great high school coaches, so we know both come in with a good understanding of the game."


            Jones, a 6-foot-2, 160-pound, shooting guard is a three-year starter who has averaged 17.5 points, 6.1 rebounds and 2.6 assists during his high school career. As a prep star, Jones has led his Mitchell High team to back-to-back city, district, regional and sub-state championships, and has finished as state runner-up in each of the last two seasons.


            "Jarvis just has a great ability to score the basketball," Bartow said. "With the success we've had recruiting players from the Memphis area, we think Jarvis will continue that tradition. He's another in-state player for us who will have a chance to be very special."


            Jones said it was the Bucs' style of play that led him to Johnson City.


            "I liked the way they got up and down the court, and I think that style fits the way I play," said Jones, who is ranked as a three-star recruit by "I was recruited by schools like Georgia Tech, Illinois and Ole Miss, but ETSU just seemed to fit."


            Jones' high school coach Jerry Johnson said his star will bring more than basketball talent to ETSU.


            "ETSU is getting an outstanding individual and student-athlete," Johnson said.  "Typically, teams are getting good players, but Jarvis has a great personality and I believe will fit in nicely at ETSU. You have a quality program in Johnson City and I think your coaching staff did an excellent job recruiting Jarvis."


            Meanwhile, Ward, a 6-foot-6, 215 pound forward, has posted double-doubles in each of the last two seasons, averaging 12 points and 14 rebounds as a sophomore, and 15 points and 14 rebounds as a junior. He was an All-County, All-Region, All-Conference, and Atlanta All-Metro Team selection, leading his high school team to a record of 25-5 last year and a trip to the Final Eight in Georgia.


            "The biggest thing about J.C. is his toughness and his ability to rebound the basketball," Bartow said. "He really has a nose for the basketball. He's led his conference in rebounding the last two years and will likely do that again this year. We see him as a four man that has versatility. He's a great student-athlete and we like being able to get a player out of the Atlanta area, which we feel could be a great recruiting area for us."


            Ward said he liked everything about ETSU and is excited to bring a workmanlike approach to the Bucs' inside game.


            "I really liked the coaching staff and I thought they could really help me develop as a player," Ward said. "I was impressed by the winning tradition at ETSU, and the guys on the team were great during my

visit to campus. My goal will be to do the dirty work inside and getting physical underneath."


            Charlie Hood, Ward's coach at Marietta High, said his senior post will add a lot of good things to the ETSU program.

            "You're getting a super young man, a competitor and a hard worker," Hood said. "He works as hard in class as he does in the weight room. And that's the biggest thing about him - his work ethic."


            With three seniors graduating this season, the Bucs will have one remaining scholarship heading into the spring months. For more on ETSU men's basketball, visit and click on the men's basketball link.