Hurricanes basketball adds five to roster

Looking to keep the momentum going from their historic ACC championship run, the Miami Hurricanes infused talent, size and experience into their lineup Tuesday.

Coach Jim Larranaga announced the addition of dual-sport athletes Cornelius Elder and Derrick Griffin, as well as the signings of James Kelly, Manu LeComte, Angel Rodriguez.

“Our recruiting class in the spring has added a lot of versatility and much-needed skills to our program,” Larranaga said. “We have graduated five outstanding seniors and lost Shane Larkin to the NBA Draft, so we have a lot of holes to fill.”

Elder, ranked among the nation’s top running backs at Ensworth High in Nashville, Tenn., also earned recognition from The Tennessean as 2013 boys basketball player of the year. The 5-11, 165-pound point guard averaged 20.2 points, 4.7 assists and 4.2 steals during his senior season.

“He has remarkable speed and quickness and competitive spirit,” Larranaga said. “We’ll look forward to when he can join our basketball program after the football season.”

In Griffin, the ‘Canes get a 6-foot-7, 217-pound forward who averaged 18.6 points and 11.1 rebounds per game during his senior year for Texas 4A state champion B.F. Terry High School. A 4-star prospect, Griffin will play tight end for Miami in the fall.

Miami added size and experience with Kelly, who recorded 1,000 points, 600 rebounds and 100 steals and blocks in his career at Owens Community College in Toledo, Ohio.

“He’s 6-7, 245 pounds and he’s big enough to battle the bigger teams in the ACC, but also quick enough to guard smaller players on the perimeter,” Larranaga said.

International standout LeComte, a point guard who has competed for Belgium at U16, U18 and U20 championships adds speed and playmaking ability to the Canes’ perimeter.

Rodriguez, who played at Miami Krop High School and earned 2009-10 Class 6A Player of the Year honors, spent the last two seasons at Kansas State University. During his sophomore campaign, the San Juan native averaged 11.4 points and 5.2 assists for the Big 12 Champion Wildcats.

“He was an all-conference player in the Big 12 and he was on the all-defensive team in the Big 12. He’s a great replacement for Shane Larkin.”

Rodriguez signed a financial aid agreement on May 1. He is seeking an NCAA waiver to play in the 2013-2014 season.