You’ve got an in-state guy in Donald Williams, who played at Prince George’s Community College. What do you like about him?
Oh man. Donald, he can really shoot the basketball. He’s got range past the 3-point line. He has other skills, too. He can put it on the floor and get to the basket. As an offensive player, he’s a guy who really scores. That’s kind of his mentality. He can score the basketball. He’s a kid who comes off screens. He’s got great form on his shot, great quickness. He’s really a scorer and a shooter, but not just a shooter. He has good skills, and I think throughout my lineup this year, it will be more athletic than what we’ve had in the past. Donald definitely fits the mode as a scorer and shooter, but also a very athletic player. He’s got great athleticism.
What do you see in Kyree Jones?
Kyree is another kid who’s a point guard but can play some over at the 2. He’s a big, strong kid at 6-3, another good shooter and scorer. He’s also a guy that has great ball-handling skills. He had some higher looks at one time. The University of Houston was very interested in him. He’s just a very solid player. He’s a strong, powerful point guard that has the ability to score. He’s a lead guard that can score. He’s also someone that can make the other people around him better. For a point guard, he has a really nice body. He has a big, strong body. That’s one thing I like about him. He’s also an excellent shooter. Really right from the beginning, Kyree has had a really solid impact on our entire team. [We're excited about] just having a point guard that can really get out there and be a leader and do the things that you expect from your point guard, but also be a more than capable scorer. He can really score the basketball, also.
Any other new faces?
One other kid we signed late is Francis Obumneme. He’s from Nigeria but he played junior college ball at Monroe up in Rochester (N.Y.). He’s 6-10, about 250. He’s got excellent size and is more of a defensive presence right now. But he has pretty good offensive skills around the basket.
You lost a lot of experience and production in Tyler Hines, Hillary Haley and Percy Woods. How do you make up for that?
Well, we hope the infusion of new blood [helps]. We struggled at the end of last year. Some of that was we had some injuries, some people were out, so we didn’t finish. It’s really disappointing that we didn’t finish strong. I think the fact that we’ve got these new kids coming in -- you hear it a lot, it’s a cliché – but we really feel like it’s a new day. With the kids we’ve talked about and all the kids we do have returning, we really feel like we’ve got a really solid team with pretty good depth. When you’re struggling a little bit, you want that infusion of new blood, new talent. The rejuvenation of our juices, so to speak. … We’re excited about this season. With the new kids we have and the kids returning, I really feel like we’ve got the basis for really having a productive year. … We really feel like we’ve got good, young talent, and the junior college kids. We really feel like it will be a good year for us, and it’s the beginning of really turning the program around to the [point where we’re] in the top tier in our conference over the next few years.
After the offseason practices, who do you expect to make a big jump this season?