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Inside look at high school and Oakland University sports from Oakland Press sports writer Dave Pemberton.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Eackles signs with Oakland

Oakland added to its recruiting class this week with what head coach Greg Kampe called the highest-rated recruit Oakland has ever signed in Ledrick Eackles of Zachary, La.

Eackles choose Oakland over Nebraska, UAB, Southern Miss and even Memphis recently showed interest in Eackles.

“We went outside of our comfort zone in recruiting,” Kampe said. “We went out of our area in who we recruit, which is a major step for us, forget that we got a really good player, we went and recruited a kid from Louisiana that had offers from BCS schools and Conference USA teams, and we got him. That’s a major step forward in who we can recruit. ... We recruited him hard. Darren Sorenson did a tremendous job. I flew to Boston to see him play, that’s something I usually don’t do.”

Eackles said the coaching staff and Oakland’s dribble-drive offense helped him decide Oakland was the right fit for him.

“I really like the coaching staff,” Eackles said. “I liked what they were looking for and I think I fit that description that perfectly. ... It’s a different style of basketball than I normally play. We press a lot in Louisiana. When I came up north, it was a different style. I like the offense Oakland runs, the dribble-drive. It’s a good offense for me because I can get to the basket.”

Eackles played last season for Hargrave Military Academy in Chatham, Va. Eackles averaged 12 points a game for Hargrave, helping lead them to a national runner-up finish in the preparatory school national championships, tallying 20 points in the title game and was named to the All-Tournament second team. Hargrave’s entire roster has committed to play Division I college basketball. Playing with so many Division I players has helped Eackles become a better player.

“Playing against the top kids in practice and learning different moves, it teaches you to play defense against different types of players, different talents and moves. And how to read players and study their moves,” Eackles said.

Kampe likes Eackles commitment to defense and his athleticism.

“He’s a tremendous athlete at 6-foot-1,” Kampe said. “His biggest strength is he has the potential to be a lock-down defender. His dad (Ledell Eackles) played in the NBA so he has the pedigree. He’s a shooter too.”

Eackles visited Oakland in late October and said he liked the campus and the players, who showed him around. But there is one thing he will have to get used to, “The only difference is the temperature,” Eackles said. It’s going to be a different atmosphere for me in the winter time.”

Eackles likely completes Oakland’s recruiting class. Kampe said the team has one scholarship left, but they don’t have any offers out for the 2009-10 class.



Blogger Gary said...

Awesome! Great news for a great program headed in the right direction. In Kampe we trust!

May 7, 2009 at 3:04 PM 

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