Hilltoppers Land Commitment From Prep Forward Laury

By: James Brandenburg Email
By: James Brandenburg Email

Already having signed three recruits for his first full class as head coach at Western Kentucky University, Ken McDonald went eastward for player no. 4.

It appears McDonald found him in 6-foot-8, 225 pound Newark (N.J.) forward David Laury.

According to Vincent Robinson, Laury's coach at Alif Muhammad's NIA School, Laury committed to the Hilltoppers after WKU's win over Georgia last week.

"(Laury) said the atmosphere at the Georgia game was incredible," Robinson said in a telephone interview Thursday. "Everything there is about basketball.... when David was at the airport on the way home he called me and said, 'Coach, this is it.'

"He also liked that WKU was the only school in the NCAA tournament with a 100 percent graduation rate - that was really impressive to him."

WKU coaches can't comment on the status of incoming recruits until they've signed a national letter-of-intent, which Laury can't do until April.

Robinson said WKU's recruitment of Laury began with assistant coach Ray Harper. Robinson said he and Harper formed a relationship during Harper's tenure as head coach at Kentucky Wesleyan College and Oklahoma City University. But he also said McDonald's eventual involvement influenced Laury's decision.

"(David) liked that WKU was like NIA - everyone's part of a family," Robinson said. "And he liked that Coach McDonald didn't promise him a starting spot. He said, 'Come in, work your butt off and you'll have a chance.' Coach McDonald's a straight shooter and David liked that."

Attempts to reach Laury via telephone about his commitment were unsuccessful.

Robinson described Laury as being "a total gym rat" and "a jack of all trades" on the basketball floor, saying Laury could play shooting guard, small forward or power forward but that small forward was the position he'd likely play in college - despite being what Robinson described as a "legitimate" 6-feet-8 and having a 7-foot-1 wingspan.

"David's a unique kid," said Robinson. "You're not going to find too many kids that are 6-8 that can do the things he can do.

"What separates him from other guys his size is he can shoot the '3' naturally. (Because of that), he can then go off the dribble or post up. He makes everyone around him better... but WKU's getting a kid who's best basketball is so far ahead of him it's going to be incredible when he gets in their program."

Robinson said Laury's averaging 26 points and 14 rebounds a game this season for the NIA School and that Laury ultimately chose the Hilltoppers' offer over those from Oklahoma State, New Mexico State, Central Florida, Iona, Wagner, St. John's and Providence.

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