The UConn front court got a boost Sunday with the addition of 6-foot-8 forward Rakim Lubin.
Lubin signed his letter of intent Sunday afternoon for UConn, which defeated Kentucky two weeks ago for its fourth national championship – and first under coach Kevin Ollie. Lubin’s coach at Buford (Georgia) High School, Allen Whitehart, confirmed that “Rock” was off to become a Husky after an afternoon ceremony.
Lubin helped lead Buford to the state championship game this past winter, scoring a season-high 37 points with 21 rebounds and five blocks in the semifinals. Morgan County, led by Mississippi State recruit Tookie Brown, beat Buford in the final 69-45, with Lubin finishing with 12 points and 12 rebounds.
“He’s a man – he could be playing on Sundays,” Whitehart said of the 250-pound power forward earlier in the week.’ “He’s a big physical kid. A physical athlete.”
With junior DeAndre Daniels leaving early for the NBA draft and Tyler Olander and Niels Giffey graduating in May, the Huskies needed additional help in the front court, especially with 7-foot center Amida Brimah undergoing off-season shoulder surgery that will sideline him four to five months.
In addition to Lubin, the Huskies’ incoming recruiting class is expected to include 6-7 Daniel Hamilton, who said last week at the Jordan Brand Classic he would soon be signing his letter of intent. Hamilton, from St. John Bosco High School in Bellflower, Calif., verbally committed to UConn last May and signed a financial-aid agreement in November.
The Huskies also have JUCO guard Sam Cassell Jr., a 6-foot-4 point guard who spent this season at Chipola College in Florida. Sophomore Rodney Purvis will be eligible to play after sitting out this season following a transfer from North Carolina State. UConn still has at least two scholarships to fill for the 2014-15 campaign.