By Staff Report.
CLEMSON, SC – The Clemson men’s basketball program announced the addition of five prospects to national letters-of-intent Wednesday, the first day of the early signing period. Head Coach Brad Brownell and his staff added Jaron Blossomgame, a 6-foot-7 forward from Alpharetta, GA, Adonis Filer, a 6-foot-2 guard from Chicago, IL, Landry Nnoko, a 6-foot-11 center from Cameroon, Jordan Roper, a 6-foot guard from Columbia, SC, and Josh Smith, a 6-foot-8 forward from Charlotte, NC.
“Our coaching staff is very excited about the competitive attitude and history of success of the players in this recruiting class,” Brownell said. “These young men come from very successful high school programs and play for some of the best coaches in their respective states. Coupled with our first recruiting class, we believe we have laid a strong foundation for the continued success of Clemson basketball.”
Blossomgame is rated among the top prospects in the country by several recruiting services. He is the nation’s No. 74 prospect by PrepStars, No. 90 according to ESPNU, and No. 119 by Rivals.com. He is a four-star prospect according to ESPNU and Rivals.com. Blossomgame was a standout on the AAU circuit last summer, where he averaged a team-high 15.7 points per game for a talented Georgia Stars team at the Peach Jam. He was a second-team all-state selection at the AAAA level in 2010-11 after averaging 24.0 points and 8.8 rebounds per game for Chattahoochee High School.
“Jaron is an athletic wing with three-point range who should excel in our motion offense,” Brownell said. “He has the physical tools to compete right away on both ends of the floor, as well as rebound and make plays around the rim. Jaron has a true passion for the game, which was evident this summer when playing for a high-level AAU team. He was consistently the team’s most dependable performer.”
Filer is rated as high as No. 117 in the Rivals.com list of the nation’s top 150 prospects. He is the No. 24 point guard prospect by Rivals and No. 28 at his position, according to Scout.com. Last season, he led Bishop Noll Prep Academy (IN) to a 26-1 record and state runner-up finish after averaging 16 points and 4.5 rebounds per game. Filer will spend a year at Notre Dame Prep School in Fitchburg, MA before enrolling at Clemson next summer.
“Adonis is a competitive young man who always wants to win,” Brownell said. “He is a physical guard who will be able to defend different positions and break down defenses and finish in the lane with his size and speed. He has an outgoing personality, and with that we think he will be a very good leader in our program for the future.”
Nnoko (pronounced NOH-koh) originally hails from Yaounde, Cameroon, but moved to the United States and played for Montverde Academy in Florida last season as a high school junior. He is a three-star prospect according to the national recruiting services and is rated as high as the nation’s No. 19 center by ESPNU. Nnoko played AAU basketball with the Florida Rams this summer.
“Landry is a big, strong post player who has made tremendous strides in his short time playing basketball,” Brownell said. “He possesses all the physical tools necessary to be a good post player in this league. He also has a nice jump hook around the basket, and can step out to 15 feet and make a jumpshot. He has the competitive nature to defend and rebound his position. Our staff truly appreciates the sacrifice he has made to make basketball a priority in his life. We believe he will have a very successful future at Clemson.”
Roper is regarded as one of the top players in the state of South Carolina, and the nation’s No. 84 prospect according to PrepStars. Last season, he led Irmo High School to a 27-3 overall record and AAAA state championship. He averaged 20.4 points, 3.7 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 2.3 steals per game as a junior. He was the AAAA Player-of-the-Year at both the state and regional level. He was also named the AAAA Midlands Player-of-the-Year by The State and named All-Tournament at both the Chick-fil-A Classic and Upward Holiday Classic. Roper enters his senior season at Irmo with 1,219 career points.
“Jordan is clearly one of the best players in South Carolina after leading his team to a state championship last season,” Brownell said. “He is an explosive guard that can really score from different areas on the court. Our staff is excited about adding a great player from the state, and specifically from Coach Whipple’s program at Irmo High School.”
Smith will add size to the Tiger frontcourt with his 6-foot-8 frame. He averaged 10.8 points and 9.5 rebounds per game last season and shot 58 percent from the field in leading Olympic High School to a 28-2 record and state sectional championship. Smith was a MEGA 7 all-conference selection and also earned MVP honors at the North Carolina/South Carolina Battle of the Classes (class of 2012).
“Josh is a strong, physical post player who will provide us with a good inside presence,” Brownell said. “Our staff loves the fact that he is the kind of guy who embraces contact. He is a very good passer with an excellent feel for the game, and can shoot the ball well out to 15 feet. He comes from a very successful program in Charlotte and his Olympic High School team should have a good chance to win the state championship this season.”