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WATCH: NC State’s best 2018 commit might be the guy no one is talking about, 6’9 Derek Funderburk

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When 6’9 forward Derek Funderburk committed to NC State, he did so without much fanfare.

That’s pretty unusual for a 6’9 guy with this type of skillset. However, it’s understandable based on the circumstances.

Funderburk was a 4-star prospect coming out of high school. He was actually the #56 player in his class that year. He committed to Ohio State and after redshirting a season, he was dismissed by Thad Matta this past summer for “failing to meet team expectations.”

Instead of transferring to another D1 school and sitting out another year, he enrolled at Northwest Florida State College (a junior college) so he could play right away. In early November, he committed to join NC State next year as a part of their 2018 recruiting class. He had played at Hargrave under NC State assistant AW Hamilton, so the relationship was already there.

Meanwhile, as a freshman at Northwest Florida JUCO, it appears he’s doing pretty darn good. It’s hard to track down stats for JUCO teams since they play so many games that aren’t ‘official’ league games, but near the end of January we found this article, stating that:

Derek Funderburk, a freshman forward, contributes 14.3 points per game on 57-percent shooting from the floor and a 39-percent clip from beyond the arc for 2.5 3s a night. He also adds 5.5 rebounds per game.

EDIT: We found his full stats. Check them out here…

Those are some great looking stats, but really what is jaw-dropping is this video. (above)

Funderburk was kind of a mystery because there really aren’t many highlight reels of him floating around. The ones that are out there are just of him dunking. That was until this video surfaced today (found by my brother, and PI contributor Greg Pascucci), which had a total of 3 views on it when we received it.

It’s 7 minutes of Funderburk playing at Northwest Florida State College, and dear lord, it’s amazing. Funderburk is so agile, has a tight handle, he can beat you off the dribble, above the rim or (and this is where we were so surprised) from 3 point range.

NC State fans had constantly questioned what their frontcourt would look like in 2018, but if the Ian Steere video from earlier today, the Manny Bates clips from a few weeks ago and this one above are any indication, the NC State frontcourt might be in a lot better shape than we thought.

Basketball Recruiting

NC State Commit Jalen Lecque Was #1 on SCTop10 With Dunk Through The Legs

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Last night NC State 2019 5-star point guard commit Jalen Lecque as #1 on SportsCenter Top-10 plays of the night with a nasty “Eastbay”…aka a between the legs dunk…on a fast break. This is the type of dunk that wins dunk contests, but not during the heat of the game.

The ease in which Lecque pulls it off is mind boggling.

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Basketball Recruiting

Kevin Keatts is Watching 4-Star Christian Brown Today

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NC State Head Coach Kevin is in Columbia, South Carolina watching 4-Star 2019 Small Forward Christian Brown (6’6”/210) at the Bojangles Bash.

Brown transferred from Lower Richmond (Columbia, South Carolina) to the prestigious Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Virginia) for his Senior season.

NC State made Brown’s Top-7 back in May along with Clemson, South Carolina, Georgia, UNLV, Seton Hall and Florida. He has already taken official visits to Georgia, Clemson and UNLV, with two more remaining.

ESPN ranks Brown as the #58 overall player in the 2019 class.

NC State will need to get one of Brown’s two remaining official visits to put themselves in a good position to land Brown. With Brown now in Virginia, Keatts and his crew have an increased advantage, with their wealth of experience recruiting in the commonwealth.

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Basketball Recruiting

Kevin Keatts Watched 5-Star Jaden Springer Play Last Night

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NC State head coach Kevin Keatts was in the bleachers last night watching 5-Star 2020 Shooting Guard Jaden Springer (6’4”/195).

Springer was the #1 ranked player in the state of North Carolina last season (Rocky River High School, Charlotte) before transferring to IMG Academy in Florida for his Junior season.

NC State offered Springer on August 29th, 2017, and as of April, the Wolfpack were won’t of the Top-5 schools recruiting him the hardest.

Springer took an unofficial visit to NC State on September 30th of last year.

ESPN ranks Springer as the #9 player in the 2020 class, and the #3 shooting guard. 247Sports ranks him as the #3 player in the state of Florida.

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Basketball Recruiting

NC State’s Kevin Keatts Watches 4-Star Henry Coleman

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NC State Head Coach Kevin Keatts was watching 4-star 2020 Small Forward Henry Coleman (6’7”/205) last night.

Coleman plays for Trinity Episcopal School in Richmond, Virginia, and is ranked as the #40 overall player in the 2020 class according to ESPN. They also rank him as the #9 Small Forward, and the #4 player in the state of Virginia. He also plays AAU ball with Team Loaded Virginia.

Kevin Keatts has already cashed in on his Virginia roots and coaching experience in the commonwealth three times. Both DJ Funderburk and Braxton Beverly played at Hargrave Military Academy where he used to coach, and Sacha Killeya-Jones actually played at Virginia Episcopal like Coleman, before committing to Kentucky.

Coleman took an unofficial visit to NC State in January, was offered in May, and too another unofficial in Raleigh for a football game. Since visiting the Wolfpack at the end of September, he has taken unofficial visits to Virginia, Virginia Tech and Oklahoma State.

He holds offers from NC State, Kansas, Florida, LSU, Ole Miss, Oklahoma State, Maryland, Penn St., Pitt, Vanderbilt, Virginia, Virginia Tech, West Virginia, Clemson, Georgetown, Wake Forest, VCU, TCU, and others.

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