By Armando Barry After the loss of their 2nd leading scorer, Umoja Gibson, due to him transferring to OU and senior guards, DJ Draper and Roosevelt Smart, who played quality minutes off the bench, it was to no surprise that UNT would look to recruit guys who satisfy the need for perimeter players. With the recent addition of Mykell Robinson, Abou Ousmane, and Mardrez McBride, the Mean Green found exactly what they were looking for. What is most exciting about UNT’s recently recruited transfer point guard, Mardrez McBride, is the tradition of winning he is bringing after a 27 win, NJCAA Division I Region 10 championship season at USC Salkehatchie. Adding a proven winner at the collegiate level to this recruiting class makes a great addition for the goal of repeating as C-USA Regular Season Champions, next season.
To get to know McBride, he has been repeatedly acknowledged as an attack guard and it goes with no contest as you can see much of a Russell Westbrook-esque game as soon as he touches the floor. However, this 6-3 guard is an absolute sniper who shot 53% from 3-pt range last season. He plays with a motor that seemingly runs forever, using his athleticism to capture rebounds, cleverly pry away balls for steals to start the fast break, and finishing at the rim like he simply hates it. UNT can expect a huge crowd pleaser with McBride as he will be a part of many future highlight reels for the Mean Green, next season. If I only had two words to describe the 6-9 Brooklyn native PF, Abou Ousmane, it would be Big Skill! While Ousmane does not wow you with any absurd athleticism, he makes up for it with his size and skill set that should be considered an impressive package of footwork, mobility, touch, and basketball IQ. He is a rarity of big-men who can be a threat anywhere inside the 3-pt line. Ousmane uses his combination of shooting ability and solid girth at 225lbs to take care of all matchups in the post, whether that be jump hooks over smaller opponents or stepping outside on bigger guys to knock down a mid-range jumper.
We could expect to see this incoming freshman supply some quality minutes off the bench this upcoming season behind senior center, Zachary Simmons, before possibly taking the reins as UNT’s top big guy in the future. UNT is very fortunate to have Mykell Robinson claim North Texas as his new home as he chose the Mean Green over two high-major conference schools from the Big 10, Minnesota and Wyoming. The 6-7 small forward out of (Houston)Sunrise Christian Prep plays on the perimeter as a 3&D wing who can knock down open 3s and use his length to strongly disrupt opponents’ jumpers and poke away the basketball when playing off-ball defense. You can see the good head on his shoulders with Robinson’s talent of creating opportunities for teammates, despite lacking awing ball-handling ability.
Out of the latest stars to join the Mean Green’s 2020 recruiting class straight from high school, Mykell Robinson seems to be the most intriguing player that could grow his game the most in the next four years, under the tutelage of Grant McCasland. From the transfer to incoming freshmen who have recently joined the 2020 UNT men's basketball recruiting class, they all bring a hunger for getting to work and winning that will be exciting to see with returning players next season.
photos courtesy of Mean Green Atheltics