Brandon Vega of Snow College in Utah has committed to playing for Winthrop, becoming new men’s basketball coach Pat Kelsey’s first recruit.
Winthrop men’s basketball coach Pat Kelsey added his first new player and his third assistant coach Tuesday.
The Eagles found a quick point guard to play the “downhill” style Kelsey has espoused when Snow College’s Brandon Vega signed up.
Vega announced on his Twitter page (@brandonvega11) his intentions late Monday.
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“I’ve committed to play basketball at Winthrop University I will be signing my LOI tomorrow !!” Vega tweeted.
Vega averaged 11.3 points and 6.9 assists per game for the Badgers last season, his second at the Utah junior college.
He would provide a different look at point guard for the Eagles, who will bring back rising sophomore Andre Smith, who’s more of a shooter, and the less-athletic but steady senior Reggie King.
The Miami native will have two years of eligibility for the Eagles, who are also looking at several other junior college players to fill some short-term holes.
Kelsey has spent a significant chunk of his recruiting time trying to convince swingman Christian Farmer to stick with his previously signed letter of intent.
Farmer, who spent the last two years at Tallahassee (Fla.) Community College, signed with the Eagles in the fall, but was unsure if he wanted to stay, according to those close to him. The 6-foot-5 shooting guard could add some scoring pop to a lineup that lost more than 70 percent of its scoring with the graduations of seniors Andre Jones, Reggie Middleton, George Valentine and Matt Morgan. The Eagles’ leading returning scorer is small forward Joab Jerome, who averaged 4.6 points per game and is primarily a defensive player.
Kelsey also added former Wake Forest co-worker Tony Hanson as his third assistant coach, joining Mark Prosser and Brian Thornton.
Hanson’s most recent job was as coordinator of basketball operations at Missouri, working under coach Frank Haith.
At Wake, Hanson served as the team’s video coordinator for five years, but was also credited with updating the school’s computerized recruiting database.
“I have known Tony Hanson for eight years and worked closely with him for four,” Kelsey said. “He is a natural born recruiter. Several years ago, I affectionately nicknamed him 'the prodigy' for his remarkable ability to know about every kid everywhere. Tony has a special ability to relate with players. Our conference just added an elite recruiter.
“I am so excited to have Tony join Woo Nation. He is a high character person that cares deeply about the development of our players on and off the court.”
Hanson, who grew up in Wilmington, N.C., graduated from the University of North Carolina, and played two years of junior varsity basketball there.
A fourth job, the director of basketball operations, remains open.