Sunday, August 18, 2013
Scout's take: Gant a big boost for Missouri
By Reggie Rankin
ESPN 100 power forward JaKeenan Gant (Springfield, Ga./Effingham County) is a great pickup for Missouri head coach Frank Haith, because he fills the need for an athletic power forward and the Tigers lock up a nationally ranked player from the fertile recruiting ground of the state of Georgia.
Why he committed: Gant will have an opportunity to contribute as a freshman, and he developed a great relationship with the coaching staff that makes him feel very comfortable.
What he brings: The No. 37 overall prospect in the 2014 class is long and active with great athleticism. He runs the floor extremely well and is a very good finisher. Gant can consistently knock down the open jumper to about 17 feet and can get to the rim with a straight-line drive. He has improved as a ball handler, and Gant gets the job done on the offensive glass. Gant can create matchup problems at the power forward position.
How he fits: Gant, the No. 2 player from Georgia in the 2014 class, will fit the Tigers' uptempo, spread offensive attack and man and pressing defensive schemes because of his ability to run the floor on the break and finish over or around defenders. The Tigers' fast break has improved with this addition. In the halfcourt, he will be able to make shots from the high post or along the baseline and will be a welcome addition in the rebounding department. Defensively, Gant's athleticism allows him to play on the ball in the press or at the the rim in the back line. In the pressure man, he can make defensive plays in the lane or on the perimeter with his lateral foot speed and quickness for a player his size.
How the class is shaping up: The four-star Gant joins small forward Chris Sandifer (Gardena, Calif./Junipero Serra), a three-star wing scorer and another nice system fit. With an athletic power forward and scoring wing in the fold, the Tigers have addressed some needs early, and the class just took a huge leap forward with the addition of Gant.