New blood, old order

Jordan on the new basketball recruits

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Graham Chenault is one of the new recriuits for HSU Basketball.

Graham Chenault is one of the new recriuits for HSU Basketball.

Photo courtesy of Facebook.

Photo courtesy of Facebook.

Graham Chenault is one of the new recriuits for HSU Basketball.

Story by Jordan Williams, Sports Editor

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As the basketball season has come to a close and plans for next season have started being made, several old faces are taking on new roles. Old roles will be filled by new faces next season as the men’s basketball team has three new players that signed on to be Reddies next season.

All three of these show promise and should help bolster up a roster already so full of talent.

The first commit announced was Graham Chenault. Chenault has been a mainstay of the Bauxite Miners for the last two seasons and won All-State and All-Conference selections.

While leading the Miners to a 4A South regional title, he also had a second straight-berth in the quarterfinals of the 4A state tournament. Averaging 16.3 points, five rebounds and 1.5 assists per game as a senior, Chenault was also awarded Tri Lake player of the year as a senior.

While playing at Bauxite, Chenault found himself most of the time as shooting guard position but wanted to make the transition to playing college ball. He may find himself playing the point guard position. As a guard, he has all the tools necessary to succeed at the next level.

Chenault has a great handle of the ball, ability to shoot the ball consistently from long range (converting at a rate of 37.7% from 3 in high school) and the ability to attack the defense off the dribble by finishing around the rim and through contact. It has been noted that Chenault has “amazing court vision,” proving this through his ability to get other players involved.

The next recruit is Grayson Nix, from Red Oak, Oklahoma. Nix helped lead the Red Oak Eagles to a stunning record of 29-5 his senior year. He ended that same season dropping 26 points and winning the Class B State Championship over the top-seeded Earlsboro. This performance also saw him in the game-winning bucket in the final seconds.

Listed as a combo guard, Nix has the inherent knack for scoring where you’d ideally want a shooting guard. He can get his shot whenever he wants.

His post-game and set jumper aspects are two you love to see in a young guard, and he never seems to be stuck or in a position where he can’t score the ball or move the ball so that his teammates can score. Nix also has a sense of a pace for the offense and where his teammates are along with the size and speed to be a great wing defender.

Lastly coming to Henderson as a transfer from the University of Arkansas-Fort Smith is 6’5 forward Jeremiah Toney. A member of the Arkansas Fab 40, the All-Metro Team and Arkansas Alumni Classic All-Star Team, Toney is an outstanding player and leader. Averaging 11.5 points and 8.5 rebound per game in high school, he played more of a forward then.

I wouldn’t be too shocked to see him spend time at either of the wing possession next season. He has a versatile skill set and high motor with great length, making him a talented rebounder and slasher.

He displays potential as a defender and even has a consistent enough 3 point stroke. This potential allows him to be a constant threat to pull up from deep when defenses sag off of him. Coming into the program as a sophomore, Toney will be coming into the Reddies program expected to contribute sooner rather than later.

The men’s basketball team has already made some improvements to its roster to make a run at the GAC playoffs next year. Hoping to improve what a lot of fans thought was going to be a good season, only time will tell if these players become contributors.

Hopes are high, and though we may have lost some of our best offensive minded guards, we have certainly gained back that offensive force in spades in these recruits.

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New blood, old order