College of Charleston basketball coach Earl Grant doesn’t get too caught up in recruiting rankings.
But Grant knows a good recruiting class when he sees one.
The Cougars signed three players on Wednesday — guard Brevin Galloway, forward Jaylen McManus and center Osinachi Smart — to go along with early fall signee Chevez Goodwin
It’s a recruiting class that Grant hopes will be the foundation for what will culminate in a Colonial Athletic Association title and a trip to the NCAA Tournament.
“I don’t think about rankings and where this guy is ranked or where our class is ranked,” Grant said. “I just want to get the right people in our program that will represent the College of Charleston at a high level both on and off the court. What we’re trying to do is gather enough talent for our quest of competing and doing something special in the month of March.”
Meanwhile, Charleston Southern added two players — Jamar Martin and Abdul Sarki — to its 2016 recruiting class.
Galloway, a 6-3, of Seneca High School set a school single-season record with 81 three-pointers in 21 games. He averaged 20 points, six rebounds and five assists per game as a senior and helped the Bobcats posted a 24-3 overall.
“Brevin is a great offensive threat,” Grant said. “He is skilled and has a high basketball IQ. His ability to stretch the defense with his shooting range will be a great asset for us. We are excited about him joining our program.”
With a crowded backcourt, Grant had originally planned to send Galloway to a prep school next year. But with the departure of Canyon Barry and Donovan Gilmore, a scholarship became available.
“We had that extra scholarship and we had some injuries this past year, so having another guy that can play in the backcourt seemed like a good idea,” Grant said.
McManus, who played at North Mecklenburg High School in Charlotte, was one of the top-rated players in North Carolina. McManus had offers from more than 20 schools that included Boston College, Temple, Rutgers, George Mason, UNC Wilmington and Hofstra. He was also getting interest from Texas, Maryland, Georgia and Marquette. McManus averaged 19.3 points, 8.8 rebounds and shot 38 percent from behind the 3-point line.
“He is extremely talented and adds a unique dimension to our program,” Grant said. “His combination of length, athleticism and skill will allow him to be very successful at the College of Charleston and in the CAA.”
During his senior year, Smart averaged 14.5 points and 13.2 rebounds per game at New Garden Friends School in Greensboro, N.C. From a small village in his native Nigeria, he lettered and served as team captain in soccer and basketball — a sport he has only played for three years since coming to the U.S. in August of 2013.
“Osi will bring a great physical presence to our team,” Grant said. “He is a great rebounder and rim protector. He also does a great job of running the floor and carving out space for post position. He will be a great addition to our program.”
Marting and Sarki, both junior college players, round out a six-member recruiting class for Charleston Southern.
Martin, a 6-6 forward from Toronto, played for Navarro College the last two years. Sarki, a 6-9 forward/center, played at Daytona State College. Martin averaged 15 points and 6.5 rebounds per game last year at Navarro. Sarki averaged 3.5 points and 5.0 rebounds a game.
“We are excited to add Abdul and Jamar to our basketball family,” said Charleston Southern head coach Barclay Radebaugh said. “Their signings give us a terrific 2016 recruiting class. We set out in the fall to add size, strength and energy to our roster, and have met every goal.”