LOS ANGELES – The USC men’s basketball program has received signed National Letters of Intent (NLIs) from wing Roschon Prince, guards Kendal Harris, Kahlil Dukes and Julian Jacobs and forward Nikola Jovanovic, it was announced today (Nov. 20) by USC men’s basketball head coach Kevin O’Neill.
“I’m really happy with our recruiting class,” said O’Neill. “I feel really good about all of the guys and I’m looking forward to them joining the Trojan Family.”
Prince, a 6-5, 200-pound wing from Long Beach, Calif., is ranked No. 48 nationally by MaxPreps and is ranked as the No. 13 small forward by Rivals.com and ranked as the No. 11 player in the state of California by ESPN.com. The four-star prospect averaged 21.7 points, 7.6 rebounds, 2.2 assists and 2.1 steals per game in leading Long Beach Poly to a 29-3 record. As a sophomore, he helped lead Long Beach Poly to a 31-2 record and to a Sourhern Section Division I-AA championship. He also plays receiver on the Jackrabbits’ football team. Prince’s older sister, Thaddesia Southall, plays on the USC women’s basketball team.
“Roschon is a very versatile player than can play and guard three positions,” said O’Neill. “He is a hard-nosed, tough competitor. He will be a huge help to us even as a freshman.”
Harris, a 6-4, 195-pound point guard from Richardson, Texas, attended Berkner High where he averaged 18.0 points, 10.0 assists, 8.0 rebounds and 7.0 steals as a senior and led them to a 20-6 record. The four-star recruit is rated the No. 77 prospect in the country by ESPN.com and the No. 109 prospect by Rivals.com. He is a good team leader, possesses a strong mid-range game and has the ability to drive to the basket consistently. At the 2012 NBPA Top 10 Camp, he helped lead his team to the team title. He played in the summers for Urban DFW Elite. His brother Terrell Harris played at Oklahoma State and is his second year of playing with the defendingNBA champion Miami Heat.
“We are really excited to have a big point guard who is aggressive and who can score as well as run the point,” said O’Neill. “We think he has a chance to be an outstanding player as a freshman. We are very excited about him coming here.”
Dukes, a 5-11, 180-pound guard from Hartford, Conn., was ranked as the No. 3 player in the state of Connecticut by ESPN.com. He is an electric scorer who averaged 21.8 points for Capital Prep Magnet School on a wide array of shots from out to 25 feet or in the paint. He also averaged 4.0 assists, 2.8 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game while leading Capital Prep to a 22-4 record and a berth in the Class S state title game. In a double-overtime victory over Classical Magnet, Dukes scored 51 points while making eight of 12 threepoint attempts. At the Super 64 tournament in Las Vegas this summer, he posted 48- and 42-point performances for the ConnecticutBasketball Club team. Dukes also led all scorers in the Adidas Indianapolis AAU Invitational this past summer.
“He is just a great scorer,” said O’Neill about Dukes. “He scores the ball exceptionally well, and from distance. He is one of the best scorers in the country and can play both guard positions.”
Jacobs, a 6-3, 175-pound combo guard, averaged 12.6 points, 5.9 assists and 5.3 rebounds last season for Desert Pines High in Las Vegas, Nev. Jacobs is ranked by ESPN as the No. 35 point guard in the nation and the No. 1 recruit in the state of Nevada.
“We are happy to add JuJu to our class,” said O’Neill. “He can play multiple positions and is a lockdown defender. He is talented and has great athleticism.”
Jovanovic, a 6-10, 215-pound forward from Serbia is playing this season at Arlington County Day School in Jacksonville, Fla. He is ranked as the No. 40 power forward by ESPN.com. This summer he played for the Serbian KK Partizan Junior Team in international competition and averaged 10.2 points and 6.6 rebounds. Jovanovic has good post moves and range out to the three-point line — traits that helped make former Trojan Nikola Vucevic, who’s from neighboring Montenegro, an all-conference performer and fi rst-round pick in the NBA draft.
“By the time he gets here he may be 7-foot, 225 pounds,” added O’Neill. “He has the chance to become an outstanding inside-outside player. He runs the court really well and shoots exceptionally well for his size.”
Currenly the Trojans’ recruiting class is ranked No. 21 by HoopScoop and second among Pac-12 teams. With six seniors on this year’s team, USC is likely to sign another player in the April signing period.