Mississippi State coach Rick Ray has picked up another guard.
Andre Applewhite, a shooting guard from Memphis Central, committed to and signed with the Bulldogs this afternoon during a ceremony at his high school, per the Twitterati. The 6-foot-5, 202-pounder averaging 21.3 points and 11.1 rebounds per game last season for Central, and his size could allow him to play the three spot.
Applewhite is a three-star prospect according to 247Sports.com, and he also held offers from Arkansas State, Auburn, College of Charleston, Missouri State and Western Kentucky. According to 247Sports, he was recruited by new assistant coach Wes Flanigan, who used to play at Auburn.
"My visit to Mississippi State was amazing," Applewhite said in a school release. "I didn’t need my whole two days of my official visit to make a decision as to where I wanted to be. The facilities, especially the academic center, blew my mind. It's amazing how much they care about the student athlete. Coach Ray is very down to earth. He’s all business, but he can crack a joke or two. ...
"Mississippi State can expect a high energy guy throughout the game. I’ll do whatever I need to win. If they need me to score, I’ll score. If they need me to rebound, I’ll go get the ball. If they need to me to defend, I will. I’m all about winning and having fun."
Applewhite played for his father at Central, and Ray praised his toughness.
"I love the fact he’s a coach's son," Ray said in the release. "He comes from a great family, where doing the right things is important to them. I'm excited about the future."
On Wednesday, point guard Jacoby Davis signed with MSU. The addition of Applewhite gives Ray a six-man signing class, and there is still room for two more if he so wishes. Shortly after being hired, Ray said a priority in this recruiting class was finding another big man – Starkville's Gavin Ware is the only post player of the six.
"If I had my druthers, I'd like to go out and find another big-bodied guy," Ray said on April 3. "A 6-10 guy that's a banger, that's physical. But I want him to run up and down the court."
Point guard was certainly a big need, though, as was the three spot after freshman Rodney Hood announced his departure on April 8.