Quick update on recruiting gains for two of the local Atlantic 10 men's basketball programs followed by a bit of site news:
* George Washington: The Colonials enter the 2015-16 season with high expectations - and a second NCAA Tournament berth in three seasons - thanks in large part to seniors Kevin Larsen, Patricio Garino and Joe McDonald. This also means the trio are done with their GW playing careers next year, which means coach Mike Lonergan is on the recruiting trail seeking replacements, especially for Larsen, the Colonials' top big man. The first member of the 2016 class, power forward/center Collin Smith, provides an option in the post-Larsen world. VerbalCommits.com ranks the 6-foot-9 prospect from Jacksonville as two-star recruit. Smith would join Wake Forest transfer Tyler Cavanaugh, Matt Cimino and 2015 freshman Collin Goss inside for the Colonials. Former Seton Hall transfer Jared Sina likely enters the fall of 2016 as GW's top addition after the guard sits out the required one season.
* George Mason: First-year head coach Dave Paulsen officially announced four recruits for the 2015-16 on Tuesday: 6-foot-7 G DeAndre Abram (Carrollton, Texas), 6-foot-10 F Danny Dixon (Grosse Pointe Park, Mich.), 5-foot-11 G Otis Livingston II (Linden, N.J.) and 6-foot-2 G Kameron Murrell (Long Beach, Calif.).
The roster underwent several changes during the transition from former coach Paul Hewitt to Paulsen. The new guys represent the positive kind of change.
“We’re really excited about these four individuals who comprise our first recruiting class,” Paulsen said. “It was very important to me that we sign young men of the highest character who had distinguished themselves academically as well as athletically. I couldn’t be happier with this group in that regard and I know that they will be great representatives of Mason both on and off the court.
Murrell, a member of the 2015 Prep School National Championship Runner-Up squad, shot a staggering 66.0 percent from three-point range and averaged 16.0 points per game, 6.3 assists per game and 2.1 steals per game last season. Some view Livingston as a potentially sneaky lead guard addition for the Patriots.
“We also addressed some specific needs for our team with some excellent ball handlers and shooters and an additional ‘big’ who can give us added depth up front,” Paulsen noted. “I am excited to work with Kam, Otis, DeAndre and Danny as we begin in earnest our quest for the A-10 Championships.”
* As for the site, you may have noticed this article is housed under a new "Atlantic 10 Conference" page on CSNwashington.com. Now there will be one central page for any George Washington, George Mason, VCU or any other A-10 coverage. Tell your friends.
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