Jun 15, 2014, 2:05 PM EDT
Oklahoma head coach Lon Kruger had previously landed one of the top available transfers this spring, and has now secured a commitment from one of the best junior college big men in the Class of 2015.
Indian Hills Community College (Iowa) 7-foot center Akolda Manyang committed to the Sooners on Saturday night, informing the coaching staff of his decision on Sunday morning, according to a report from R.J. Young of SoonersScoop.com, a Rivals affiliate site.
Manyang becomes Oklahoma’s first commit in the Class of 2015. The Sooners had been pursuing Manyang during his first season at Indian Hills, according to Brad Winton of JuCoRecruiting.com. In March, he also reported that Kansas was getting involved in Manyang’s recruitment, as well.
“I think the fact that he’s very comfortable with their coaching staff was great,” Indian Hills head coach John Wardenburg told Young. “They’ve done a fantastic job of recruiting him. He tried to build a relationship with coach [Lon] Kruger, and he’s got that.”
“At 7-foot, 250, he’s got a tremendous body, but I still think he has room to grow,” Wardenburg added. “He’s a good shot blocker, but I think he has a nice set of offensive skills that are getting better and better. He can score inside and out. He’s got good touch from 15 feet and in.”
Manyang averaged 8.5 points and 5.7 rebounds per game while shooting 57 percent from the field for an Indian Hills team that reached the NJCAA National Tournament title game.
In mid-May, Houston transfer TaShawn Thomas enrolled at Oklahoma. The junior is seeking a waiver for immediate eligibility this season. If Thomas, who led the Cougars with 15.4 points and 8.1 rebounds per game this past season, is not granted a waiver he would use his final season of eligibility in the 2015-2016 season, joined by Manyang on the OU frontline. Forward Ryan Spangler would be a senior while Buddy Hield, Isaiah Cousins and Jordan Woodard, three guards who averaged double figures in 2013-2014, would all be upperclassmen, as well.
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