Nevada men’s hoops signs two | NevadaAppeal.com

Nevada men’s hoops signs two

RENO – University of Nevada basketball coach Mark Fox is off to a good start in the recruiting wars.

Fox announced Tuesday that Richie Phillips, 6-foot-7 220-pound forward from Franklin High in Seattle, Washington, and 6-9 225-pound forward Jeremy Mayfield from MacArthur High in Irving, Texas have signed and returned national letters of intent.

“We are extremely pleased to add two quality players and terrific young men,” Fox said. “Along with our returning players, we have secured our frontline for the future.”

Both signed one day before the end of the early signing period. Fox still has two more scholarships available, and more than likely will seek out talented perimeter players.

Mayfield, who is ranked the 97th best player in the country according to RivalsHoops.com, also was in the top 30 at the Adidas Superstar Camp. He was a 5A honorable mention All-District 6 selection last year, averaging 18 points, nine rebounds and five blocked shots in helping his team to a 22-10 record.

‘Jeremy is a gifted player with size and skill,” said Fox, who envisions Mayfield playing at either the 4 or 5 in the Nevada system. “He’s not quite as skilled as Nick (Fazekas) from the outside, but he’s a guy that can finish plays.”

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It was reported earlier by another area paper that Mayfield wouldn’t actually sign his scholarship offer until the spring, but Fox never believed that.

“I think it was the first major decision he’s ever made in his life,” the Nevada coach said. “It took a few days for him to feel comfortable (with his decision). I never thought it would go to the spring.”

Phillips, who plays at Franklin High, averaged 11.5 points and 7.9 rebounds per game. He also blocked nearly two shots a contest. He and Lyndale Burleson combined to lead Franklin to the 4A Mountain Division crown.

“Richie is extremely explosive,” Fox said. “I think he’s going to be a good player. He knows how to win. He was overshadowed at his high school by some of the great players he played with.

“He’s strong. Physically, he’s a lot like Kirk (Snyder) except that Kirk was a guard. He’s a solid shooter, but he’s not a three-point threat at this time.”

Fox now has much-needed depth up front. When practice starts next fall, he’ll have Fazekas, David Ellis, Chad Bell, Mayfield and Phillips to occupy the two forward/center spots.

Mayfield still must raise his core grade point average to 2.7 before he can become eligible immediately. Nevada is currently undergoing an academic problem with Lyndale Burleson, who has yet to be declared eligible for this season.

Darrell Moody can be reached at dmoody@nevadaappeal.com, or by calling (775) 881-1281.