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Huggins announces 2011 recruiting class

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WVU inks five

West Virginia University basketball coach Bob Huggins has announced the signing of Aaron Brown, Pat Forsythe, Jabarie Hinds, Tommie McCune and Keaton Miles to national letters of intent for the 2011-12 academic year.

“We are certainly excited about this class,” says Huggins. “We believe that we answered a lot of our needs in different areas with the departure of five seniors next year.”

Brown, a 6-foot-3, 205-pound wing, is currently in his senior year at Penn Wood High School in Lansdowne, Pa., where he plays for coach Clyde Jones. Last year as a junior, Brown averaged 18.7 points and 6.5 rebounds per game and is considered the best player in Delaware County, according to the Philadelphia Daily News. He is ranked as the 27th-best small forward by Scout.com, the 29th-best small forward by ESPN.com and is a Rivals 3 star.

A native of Darby, Pa., Brown, who is left-handed, attended Roman Catholic High as a freshman. He scored a team-high 20 points in leading Penn Wood to its first District 1 Class AAAA championship in beating Plymouth-Whitemarsh. He played AAU basketball with Team Final, coached by Rob Brown.

“Aaron will hopefully give us toughness and perimeter defense,” says Huggins. “He is a guy who loves to play basketball and is constantly in the gym. Aaron also should give us consistent perimeter shooting. He should fill a void on the wing with the losses of Casey Mitchell and Jonnie West.”

Forsythe, a 6-foot-10, 210-pound center, is from Brunswick, Ohio, where he is in his senior year at Brunswick High, playing for coach Joe Mackey. Last year as a junior, he played the first 12 games of the season in a brace while he recovered from a fractured vertebrae. He went on to average five points, seven rebounds and nearly three blocks a game on a team that finished with a 17-5 record.

Forsythe is rated as a Rivals 3 star and is ranked as the 54th-best center by ESPN.com.

“Pat has tremendous upside,” says Huggins. “The longer the recruiting process went on, more and more of the big name schools started coming to Brunswick. He runs the floor extremely well, has outstanding lateral quickness and has very effective footwork in the post. Obviously, he needs to improve his strength and gain some weight, but he really has an exciting upside.”

Hinds, a 5-foot-11, 165-pound guard, is from Mount Vernon, N.Y., where he is in his senior year at Mount Vernon High, playing for coach Bob Cimmino. Hinds averaged 18.5 points, 4.5 steals and 4.0 assists last season as a junior. He has scored more than 1,000 points in his Mount Vernon High career.

Scout.com has Hinds at No. 13 among players at his position while Rivals.com lists Hinds at No. 26. He is ranked No. 13 at his position by ESPN.com and 73rd overall in the 2011 class. Hinds played AAU basketball for the Westchester Metro Hawks.

“Anytime Bob Cimmino compares you in the same breath as Ben Gordon, it certainly says a lot,” says Huggins. “Jabarie gives us the ability to penetrate opposing defenses and create for himself or his teammates. He’s extremely well-coached, coming from the storied Mount Vernon program. Jabarie will compete immediately for playing time.”

McCune, a 6-foot-8, 200-pound forward, is from Saginaw, Mich., where he attends Saginaw High, playing for coach Lou Dawkins. He is ranked No. 20 at his position by Rivals.com and No. 100 overall in the 2011 class. Scout.com has McCune as the 26th-best power forward while ESPN.com has him ranked No. 24. McCune is also listed as a Rivals 4 star.

Last year as a junior, McCune averaged 22 points, 11 rebounds, four assists and three blocked shots for Saginaw High. He played AAU basketball for Team Pride, where he averaged 44 points and 20 rebounds in July.

“Tommie is another guy with an exciting upside,” says Huggins. “His length and perimeter skills will remind Mountaineer fans of Devin Ebanks. Tommie will add a tremendous boost to our overall team length and athleticism. He’s a big-width guy with outstanding perimeter skills.”

Miles, a 6-foot-6, 200-pound small forward, is from Dallas, where he attends Lincoln High, playing for coach Leonard Bishop. Last year as a junior, Miles averaged 13.5 points and 12 rebounds per game in helping Lincoln to a 28-4 record and a trip to the third round of the UIL Class 4A playoffs. He played AAU basketball with the Dallas Mustangs.

Miles is listed as the 39th-best player at his position by ESPN.com and the 34th-best at his position by Rivals.com. He is ranked No. 17 in the state by TexasHoops.com.

“Keaton is from the storied Dallas Lincoln High basketball program,” says Huggins. “He will add immediate size and athleticism. His strengths are attacking the basket and at the defensive end. He is another player who loves being in the gym, and we expect him to show tremendous improvement each year because of his love for the game. Keaton is from a basketball family – his father and uncle were major Division I players.

“This class certainly has the opportunity to have the impact and to see the playing time that the Devin Ebanks-Kevin Jones-Truck Bryant class has had on the court. This will be an exciting class for Mountaineer fans to watch and enjoy for the next four years.”

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