By Joel Weckerly, Sports Editor
Men’s head basketball coach Klint Pleasant an-nounced Wednesday the signing of two junior college transfers who should play significantly in the 2004-05 season.
The first, 6-foot-6, 220-pound forward Hakim Rasul, transfers to ACU from Midland College, where he earned all-American status after averaging 15 points and eight rebounds per game for the Chaparrals.
Rasul, who will be a junior for the Wildcats next season, was a two-time first team Class 5A all-state player in Arizona as a high schooler. He was the state’s “Mr. Basketball” as a senior after averaging 26 points and 10 boards per game for Pueblo High School.
“He’s someone who can help us right away,” said Pleasant, who spent much of last season watching Rasul play. “He’s a great scorer around the basket, and it seemed like the more pressure he was under, the better he performed.”
The other recruit is 6-foot-8, 255-pound forward Tony Brown, who transfers to ACU from Northland Pioneer Junior College in Arizona.
Pleasant discovered Brown through Northland coach Richard Zalenski, who played for Pleasant’s farther, Garth, at Rochester College in the 1970s.
Brown, 27, played his last collegiate season in 1995-96, then spent nine years in the United States Army. After averaging 14.1 points and 8.2 rebounds during his freshman season at Northland, Brown signed with Eastern Michigan University but changed his mind following a coaching change.
Pleasant said Brown’s time away from the court won’t make a drastic difference.
“If anything, it’s a good thing,” Pleasant said. “When guys get older they get stronger and better. He’ll obviously have to get back into game shape, and he’ll be working out this summer.”
Pleasant said he plans to sign more recruits before the May 19 cut-off date, but wouldn’t divulge their names.