Mountain West Basketball Recruiting Round Up: Early Signing Period 2020-2021

Mountain West Basketball Recruiting Round Up: Early Signing Period 2020-2021

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Mountain West Basketball Recruiting Round Up: Early Signing Period 2020-2021

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A look at recruiting classes from around the Mountain West


Plenty of commits and signings during the first signing window.


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UNLV and TJ Otzelberger continue recruiting hot streak for second year in a row.

Things are different in 2020 and college basketball recruiting is no exception. There have been plenty of campus tours, offers and visits during zoom and other digital means but things haven’t necessarily slowed down.

Teams across the Mountain West received national letters of intent from players during the early signing period for college basketball. Around the conference the average number of commits or signings appears to be two, with UNLV the exception with three players. UNLV also has the highest ranked players in the class, with two top-50 players and a local three-star point guard.

The early signing period lasts exactly one week, starting on November 11th and running until November 18th. Something to keep in mind during this signing period is the decision back in October by the NCAA’s Division I council to grant an extra year of eligibility to winter sports athletes due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The extra year only applies to players who stay at their current school but can be utilized by freshman, sophomores, juniors or seniors. Any seniors who utilize the extra year of eiligibility do not count towards a school’s 13 scholarship count. So some schools could have rosters of 16 or 18 scholarship caliber players. It will be crazy, new and exciting all at the same time.

Boise State: 2 Signed

Tyson Degenhart 6-7 SF Mt. Spokane HS-Spokane, WA

“Tyson is a very versatile, high-motor guy with a ton of skill and toughness. He has a very mature game that will translate to this level and give him an opportunity to make a significant impact as a Bronco. He can score at all three levels and is an excellent rebounder. In addition to all of his basketball abilities, Tyson is a tremendous student and young man.” -Coach Leon Rice

RJ Keene 6-7 SG Concordia Lutheran HS-The Woodlands, TX

“RJ is very good with the ball in his hands and can really shoot it. He brings similar size and shooting ability to the guard position that Bronco fans grew accustomed to while watching Justinian Jessup play here for four years. He has a high basketball IQ that comes from an athletic lineage. His grandfather played basketball at LSU, his father at Illinois and his mother was a college athlete.” -Coach Leon Rice

Colorado State: 2 Signed

Jalen Scott, 6-3 180 PG Paradise Honors HS-Surprise, AZ

Jalen Lake 6-4 185 SG Waxahachie HS-Waxahachie, TX

Fresno State: 0 Signings or Commits

Nevada: 2 Signed

Jalen Weaver 6-4 185 SG Aurora, CO-Southern California Academy

“Jalen is a versatile combo guard with a tremendous upside,” Alford said. “He’s a big, athletic guard who can play multiple positions in the backcourt. Jalen plays with great energy and with his athleticism, he will only improve.”

Nick Davidson 6-8 210 PF Mater Dei HS-Santa Ana, CA

“Nick is a skilled, hard-working forward,” Alford said. “He brings both high character and toughness to our team. Nick comes to us from a very good program in Mater Dei, which is coached by the legendary Gary McKnight. Nick is also a legacy player at Nevada as his mom and dad played for the Pack in the early 1990s.

New Mexico: 1 Commit

Jamel King 6-7 180 SF Bella Vista Prep-Tuscaloosa, AL

San Diego State: 1 Commit

Demarshay Johnson Jr. 6-9 210 PF Salesian Prep-Richmond, CA

“they’re top 10 in the country, the atmosphere is amazing, I know some people there that I can really connect with, the location is not too far from home but also far enough, and the coaching staff and players I feel like I can mesh well with.” Johnson Jr. on why he picked the Aztecs

San Jose State: 0 Commits or Signings

UNLV: 2 Signed/1 Commit

Zaon Collins 6-1 165 PG Bishop Gorman-Las Vegas, NV

Signed LOI but no comment from coach Otzelberger at this time.

Keshon Gilbert 6-1 170 PG Vashon HS (MO)-Las Vegas NV

Signed LOI but no comment from coach Otzelberger at this time.

Arthur Kaluma 6-8 205 PF Dream City Christian-Dallas, TX

Utah State: 1 Signed

Dallin Grant 6-8 210 SF Cedar City HS-Cedar City, UT

“We are thrilled to announce that Dallin Grant will be joining the Utah State family,” Smith said. “Dallin is a high character young man that comes from a great family. We love that he can’t wait to be an Aggie. He will add versatility to our program at 6’8″, 210 pounds with his size, athleticism and skill level,” Smith continued. “Dallin makes an impact on the game with his ability to handle the ball, shoot with range and rebound at a high level. His style of play will be a great fit for our program.”

Wyoming: 2 signed

Ben Bowen 6-5 185 SG Mountain Vista HS-Highlands Ranch, CO

“Ben is the classic late bloomer who won’t turn 18 until once he has arrived at the University of Wyoming,” Linder said.  “When you’re trying to project what a player can become Ben checks a lot of boxes of someone who can become a really good college basketball player based off what he is now but could become a really special player if he continues to grow and body develops. Ben reminds me a lot of former Cowboy, Hayden Dalton, who back when the Cowboys signed him out of junior college a lot of people didn’t see the player that ultimately, he would become.  We are so excited for the opportunity to help Ben continue to grow and develop as a student-athlete at the University of Wyoming.” -Coach Linder

Nate Barnhart 7-0 185 PF DeSoto HS-Lenexa, KS

“You don’t come across too many players who are seven feet tall who can pass, handle, shoot and love to play,” Linder said. “Luckily, we came across just that with Nate!  The more people that we talked to that interacted with Nate on a daily basis the more we got excited.  The one constant from everyone we spoke to was that he was always working to get better.  He knows that his body will need to develop, but his passion for the game will give him a chance to be a rare player who can stretch the defense from the perimeter while still protecting the interior with his length and athleticism.  Nate has a tremendous future ahead of him and we cannot wait to see him in the Brown and Gold!” -Coach Linder

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