MADISON, Wis. – Wisconsin head coach Bo Ryan announced four additions to the men’s basketball team Wednesday when Traevon Jackson, Frank Kaminsky, George Marshall and Jarrod Uthoff signed National Letters of Intent to attend the University of Wisconsin. The four high school seniors will enroll at UW next year and play basketball for the Badgers beginning in the fall of 2011.
TRAEVON JACKSON (6-2, 200, Guard, Westerville High School, Westerville, Ohio)
Traevon Jackson earned 2010 second-team all-state honors as a junior after averaging 19 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists and 4 steals for Westerville (Ohio) South. Jackson captained his team to a 20-0 regular-season record last year before losing in the district semifinals and was rewarded with the 2010 Ohio Capital Conference Player of the Year Award.
Jackson, who earned first-team All-Metro (Columbus Dispatch) and first-team All-Central District honors a year ago, has scored over 900 career points. The son of Ohio State alum and NBA veteran Jimmy Jackson, Traevon is an honor roll student and member of National Honor Society.
“We’re extremely excited have Traevon join us as a Badger,” Ryan said. “He brings all the first-class intangibles that you want in someone representing your program on the court, in the classroom and in the community. He’s truly a great young man. His mom, Tami, along with his dad, Jim, provided an excellent foundation for him to develop as a person. From a basketball standpoint, his vision, basketball IQ, toughness and competitive fire will make him a fierce competitor in the Big Ten. He has the tools to be an excellent defender in addition to the leadership qualities that are vital for individuals in successful programs. His ball handling, decision-making and shooting have improved immensely over the past two-plus years of the recruiting process. If he continues to develop, as we envision, Wisconsin fans will have a lot to be cheering about.”
FRANK KAMINSKY (6-10, 225, Forward, Benet Academy, Lisle, Ill.)
Frank Kaminsky averaged a double-double (13 points and 10 rebounds per game) as a junior at Benet Academy in Lisle, Ill. The All-East Suburban Catholic Conference and DuPage County All-Area selection also averaged four blocked shots per game a year ago. Kaminsky helped Benet post a 26-4 record in 2009-10 and reach the supersectionals, scoring 39 points in a state tournament game.
“Frank’s development has sky-rocketed over the past six months,” said Ryan. “He went from having a hard time getting on the floor in AAU the summer before his junior year, to having a large contingent of suitors by the following spring. He’s long, skilled and has a knack for finding the basket. His dad was a former college player and coach so he’s been taught the right way from day one. A very good student at a very challenging school – he fits the profile of what a student-athlete has to be at Wisconsin in order to be successful. Our staff is really excited about what the future could hold as Frank continues to grow and develop. I know he is excited to have a great senior season at Benet and then move on to what’s next for him. Badger fans will enjoy watching him mature in Cardinal and White.”
GEORGE MARSHALL (6-0, 170, Guard, Chicago Brooks College Prep, Chicago, Ill.)
George Marshall has started each of his first three seasons at Chicago (Ill.) Brooks College Prep, earning 2010 honorable mention All-City and All-Area from the Chicago Sun-Times. Marshall averaged 17 points, 5 assists, 4 rebounds and 2 steals as a junior while leading Brooks to a 24-9 record. As a sophomore, Marshall’s 16 points, 5 assists, 4 rebounds and 2 steals per game helped Brooks to a Red South conference championship and a 24-7 record. He was honored with 2009 All-City by the Chicago Public League Basketball Coaches Association that year.
“We’re very happy to have George, and his family, join the Badger basketball family in Madison,” Ryan said. “George is a very sharp, intelligent young man that will be exciting to coach over the course of his career. He brings quickness with the ball and the ability to transition offensively from end to end in a blink. As he continues to grow and mature physically, his quickness will become even more of a weapon. George is a very good student that attends a very demanding school in Brooks. His parents, George, Sr. and Maria, have been great role models for him to follow. Our staff is excited about his future potential. Wisconsin fans will have fun getting to know him and will enjoy watching him develop during his career as a Badger.”
JARROD UTHOFF (6-8, 195, Forward, Jefferson High School, Cedar Rapids, Iowa)
As a junior, Jarrod Uthoff averaged 21 points and 10 rebounds per game while guiding Cedar Rapids (Iowa) Jefferson High School to its first Class 4A state tournament appearance since 1999. The 2010 Mississippi Valley Conference Player of the Year, Uthoff made 55 percent of his field-goal attempts and 80 percent of his free-throw attempts a year ago. Uthoff was a first-team All-State pick by the Iowa Newspaper Association and a second-team All-State pick by the Des Moines Register. A member of National Honor Society and a 4.0 grade-point-average, he was his junior class president in 2010.
“Jarrod brings the entire package to Wisconsin,” Ryan said. “In addition to being a very good player with tremendous upside, he is a fantastic student, role model and community leader at Jefferson High School. His length and skill set will allow him to play different positions and as he develops and adds strength to his frame, he will be a great fit within our system. His maturation and development have exploded since the early spring which made him a hot commodity among college coaches. He’s a first-class young man with parents, in Dale and Diane, that did a great job of setting high expectations for him at an early age. It definitely paid off for Jarrod both on and off the court. It will be exciting to watch him grow and develop during his career in Madison. I know he’s ready to have a great senior year and then will be ready take the next step here with his teammates.”