May 5, 2009

Bulldogs get a commitment from Riek

Mississippi State turned heads last week by signing one of the top recruits in the country five-star in power forward Renardo Sidney.

But the story of their latest commitment could be even more bizarre. 7-foot-2, 250-pound John Riek was named the top center in the country in the 2008 class and briefly declared for the NBA Draft before pulling out due to knee problems.

Now the native of Sudan who was verbally committed to Cincinnati has given his latest pledge to MSU and head coach Rick Stansbury.

Riek's decision was made public on the IMG Basketball Academy blog on Monday. Riek has been at the Bradenton, Fla., facility honing his skills and rehabbing from injury over the past few months.

"John's intensity level and shot-blocking ability will immediately impact the SEC," said IMG Basketball Academy's Post-Graduate Program Coordinator Dan Barto on the IMG website. "Having a tremendous toughness and ridiculous wingspan, he will able to bring a defensive presence much like Hasheem Thabeet did for Connecticut."



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