Blackburn men's basketball recruiting class announced

Blackburn men’s basketball recruiting class announced

CARLINVILLE (Aug. 24, 2017) – Coming off the best record since 2005, the Blackburn men’s basketball team is looking to keep building on that progress. ‘Coach Steve Kollar announced the 11-man incoming recruiting class for the upcoming 17-18 season.

“We are very excited about the young men that have chosen to be difference makers on and off the floor at Blackburn College. This is a very talented, high-character, competitive, and hard- working group. We could not be more excited about the direction of this program and the young men that have been and will continue to be instrumental in that progress. Beaver Nation should be very excited for the future of the Men’s Basketball program,” said Kollar.

Dajour Edmonson-McKenzie, Tenn. (5-9 Guard/McKenzie High School)

Edmonson, a three-year member of the Rebel basketball team, averaged nine points per game in his senior season, shooting 31 percent from three-point range and 81 percent at the free throw line. He was also named to the All-District team as a senior.

“Dajour is just starting to scratch his potential and has a lot of room to grow. He is a gym rat and will put in the time if you will spend time with him showing him how to improve,” said Coach John Wilkins of McKenzie High School.

Nigel Ferrell-St.Louis  (6-2 Guard/Lift For Life Academy/St.Louis Community College)

Nigel is the all-time leading scorer at Lift For Life Academy with 1,398 career points. Nigel was a four-year varsity starter and was selected two-time All District at Lift For Life. Nigel helped lead his STLCC team to a 21-14 record with a Region and District Championship.

“Nigel is definitely a gym rat and wants to get better every day. You guys are getting a very humble kid and a kid that wants to win. He definitely changed our program around once he stepped into those halls at Lift for Life Academy. People to this day still talk about Nigel and how they love the way he played the game,” said Coach Terrence Hobson at Lift For Life Academy.

Duncan King-Peoria (5-10 Guard/Peoria Richwoods High School/Carl Sandburg College)

Duncan comes to Blackburn fresh off a District Championship game appearance at Carl Sandburg College. He averaged 8.5 points (career high 30 points vs Division I Highland College) 2.8 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game in the 2016-17 season.

“Duncan has the three keys to be successful. Duncan has talent, work ethic and is coachable. We were one game away from the Sweet 16 this past season and Duncan was a big part of our success. While we will certainly miss Duncan on and off the floor, he is going to a great place in Blackburn. We want to wish him the best,” said Coach Ryan Twaddle from Carl Sandburg College.

Bryson Kirby-Lincoln  (6-2 Guard/Lincoln Community High School)

Kirby averaged nine points per game while shooting 39 percent from the field. He made 85 three-point field goals his senior year, up from 39 his junior season. He knocked down 124 three-point  field goals at 39 percent in his career at Lincoln.

He was named to the Central State Eight All-Conference team and was named to the Central State Eight Academic All-Conference team for the third consecutive year. He is also a member of the National Honor Society.

“Bryson has grown six inches in the last year and half. He has matured and developed his game and will continue to improve as he becomes stronger. Bryson is a very good shooter and has great range with very good court vision. He has a good wing span that helps him get his hand on a lot of basketballs. Bryson really understands the game of basketball. I believe that Bryson will continue to improve and will be a very good player at Blackburn College,” said Coach Neil Alexander of Lincoln Community High School.

Kyle Lynch-Pana  (6-4 Forward/Pana High School)

Kyle is a two-time South Central All-Conference selection. Senior year Kyle had averaged 12.3 ppg, 5.6 rebounds per game, 2.2 assists per game, and 1.5 steal per game. Junior year he averaged 11.4 ppg and 5.9 rpg. He was named All-Tournament at the Vandalia Holiday Tournament, named team MVP in back-back years as well as captain his senior year, and was also recognized as a Scholar Athlete at Pana High School.

“Kyle is an excellent young man in the classroom, on the court, and in the community. He offers to volunteer and give back to others whenever he is presented with the opportunity. Kyle brings intensity on the basketball court at all times and is a great two-way player. He is a matchup problem and disrupts opponents with his athleticism and motor. Kyle will be successful at Blackburn he goes because of his selflessness and drive. I expect him to fit right in at Blackburn and make great contributions to the college as a whole and also the basketball program,” said Coach Adam Metzger from Pana High School.

Tim Marston-Murphysboro  (6-3 Forward/Murphysboro High School)

Tim has been a three-year starter for Murphysboro High School. During that time he has been a team captain and MVP of the Ernie Bozarth Tournament. Senior year Tim averaged 10 ppg on 50 percent from the field and 38 percent from three-point range, while also averaging five rebounds per game. Tim is more than willing to do the dirty work on the defensive end of the floor, proven by his 16 charges taken. In the classroom Tim was on the academic honor roll on several occasions and was named Student Citizen of The Year junior year, and Student of The Year his senior year at Murphysboro.

“Tim will be a great asset for the Blackburn College Basketball team and as a student. What he brings to the table as a player and as a person is leadership, team player, hustle, he can play defense and shoots the ball pretty good from the arc and inside. Tim will represent Blackburn very well on and off the court,” said Coach Daryl Murphy of Murphysboro High School.

Matt Moseley-Springfield  (6-3 Forward/Sacred Heart-Griffin)

Matt was a two Year Varsity starter for Sacred-Heart Griffin High School. Matt averaged 1.9 points per game with 1.7 rebounds per game his junior season and 5.5 points per game with 3.1 rebounds per game his senior season for the Cyclones. Matt shot a career 77 percent from the free throw line and led the Cyclones in three-point shooting percentage at 45.2 percent.

“Matt is a versatile player that can shoot from anywhere. His best attribute is his passion and intensity for his team and the game of basketball,” said Coach Kyle Krager from Sacred Heart- Griffin.

Gage Rawls-Decatur  (6-0 Guard/MacArthur High School)

Gage was a two-sport athlete (safety in football) for Decatur MacArthur High School. He played on the West team in the Order of Eastern Star All-Star game this past summer. He was named Academic All-Conference two years in a row. Gage is a defensive minded player as was stated by Coach Ronald Ingram. “Gage was my defensive stopper; he always guarded the other team’s best player. He is very athletic, tough hard nose kid. He is also a great teammate. He works hard on the court and even harder in the classroom. He’s a great kid and you’re going to love having him around,” said Ingram.

Savion Smith-Chester  (6-3 Forward/Chester High School)

Smith, a three-sport star helped lead his Yellow-Jacket basketball squad to back-back twenty-win seasons, while being named Black Diamond West All-Conference selection last year. He led the team in scoring at 15.7 ppg, steals with 61, and blocks with 24, while finishing second on the team in total rebounds with 179. Savion will be joining current Blackburn senior and Chester alum Jake Lochhead.

“To say that Savion’s hard work in the offseason paid off, would be an understatement. His hard work only showed what he is capable of if he puts his mind to it. He literally improved in every single statistical category from last season to this season. I am very happy that he has chosen to continue playing basketball at Blackburn and wish him all the luck in the world with basketball and his education. Thank you for everything you have done for Chester and our family, we love you,” said Coach Brad Norman from Chester High School.

Chris Stone-Evans, Ga. (6-1 guard/Evans High School)

Chris averaged 12 ppg while shooting 53 percent from the floor and 38 percent from three-point land. Chris knocked down 89 three-point field goals his senior year and was one of the leaders in the entire region. As a junior Chris was First Team All-Region, All-Area, and All-County while helping his team to a third place finish in the region. Senior year once again he was selected as All-County and All-Region. Chris has achieved Honor Roll on several occasions throughout his academic career and maintained a 3.4GPA.

“During his career at EHS he exhibited a strong work ethic on the court and in the classroom. He was a good teammate and was well liked and respected by his peers and the school staff. Chris was coachable and seemed to maintain the desire to compete and continuously improve his game and basketball IQ. I really enjoyed the opportunity to coach him and believe he will be successful in whatever he chooses to dedicate himself to, said coach Thomas Holtzner from Evans High School.

Jamaya Wyatt-Chicago  (6-6 Forward/Uplift High School/ Kennedy King Community College)

Wyatt led Kennedy-King with 28 blocks and was second among the Statesmen with a 6.5 rebounds-per-game average. In addition, the 6-foot, 6-inch forward averaged 5.2 points in each of his 31 appearances. Wyatt appeared in 31 games and started 11 for the Statesmen in 16-17 and appeared in 30 games while starting 4 while at Rend Lake his freshman year.

“Jamaya is blue-collar hard-working player with a single focus on winning; his focus is always on what he can do to help his team win. This makes him a great teammate and asset to winning,” said coach Da’Veed Dildy of Kennedy King Community College.