Posted On: 11/8/17 1:33 PM
November 8th marks the first day in a week long stretch — through Nov. 15th — when 2018 Division I and Division II commits can sign their Nation Letters of Intent (NLI), and it was a busy day around Iowa for the top guys in the class. Below we’ll break down the signings.
Joe Wieskamp, 6’6 G/F, Iowa (Muscatine)
Not just the state’s best player, but one of the nation’s best, Wieskamp will come into a Hawkeyes program that’s already trending upwards, and make an immediate impact. He’s a big and rangy wing who will slash adeptly and is capable of filling it up from deep. He’ll rebound and defend well from the wing to boot. Get excited Hawk fans; Wieskamp should be an All Big Ten performer before too long.
It’s official. Joe Wieskamp is a Hawkeye. pic.twitter.com/AoCMgUUc1m
— Evan Riggs (@EvanRRiggs) November 8, 2017
AJ Green, 6’2 PG, Northern Iowa (Cedar Falls)
What a tremendous get for the Panthers, and it’s one that ultimately came as no shocker. Yes, Green had high-major offers from Iowa State, Clemson, Nebraska, Virginia and Minnesota, but there was always a catch: his dad is an assistant coach at Northern Iowa. And it’s not like the Panthers are any slouch, they’ve been one of the best mid-major programs since they helped pioneer the mid-major takeover in the mid-2000s. Green should make an immediate impact with his slick and crafty playmaking ability. He’s one of the best shooters off the dribble we’ve ever seen (maybe the best at the high school level). Like his Iowa Barnstormers teammate, Wieskamp, Green should be an all-conference performer before too long.
— UNI Basketball (@UNImbb) November 8, 2017
Jal Bijiek (2017), 6’7 G/F, North Dakota (Des Moines North)
This one comes as a bit of a surprise, being that Bijiek — a 2017 graduate of Des Moines North who spent his last several months at Creating Young Minds Academy — had a host of high-major offers, including Oklahoma, Texas Tech, LSU and Wichita State. North Dakota was the first school to offer Bijiek, during his 16U season with Kingdom Hoops, and he had that offer and one from Southeast Missouri State at the conclusion of his high school career. The rangy and bouncy wing then bolted to Irving, TX to play with Creative Young Minds Academy and promptly received a slew of additional offers. In the end, it was North Dakota, a school that has done very well nabbing Iowa talent the past several years, that landed the electric, high-flying wing.
— Handle University (@handleUcrew) November 8, 2017
Blake Brinkmeyer, 6’8 PF, Indiana State (Valley)
Iowa’s 3rd-ranked 2018, Brinkmeyer enjoyed a meteoric rise in our prospects rankings when it was finally discovered that the length and bouncy big-man was capable of dominating a game on both sides of the ball. We say finally because in a Valley program that has had more talent than any other program in the state the past three seasons, Brinkmeyer has had to wait his turn to showcase himself. But with Kingdom Hoops, and summer ball with Valley, he made it clear time and again that he was a guy who can control the glass, and will provide electrifying jams, many of the putback variety, as well as an ability to step out and can a 12-footer. He’ll get a chance to lead his high school team this season in a possible state title march, then he’ll head to Terre Haute, Indiana — where Larry Bird played his college ball — and continue to develop as an impact power forward.
— Kingdom Hoops (@hoops_kingdom) November 8, 2017
Matt Mims, 5’11 PG, South Dakota State (Cedar Rapids Xaiver)
The Jackrabbits pulled in Iowa’s 9th-ranked 2018, and they are getting a bonafide winner. Mims’ Saints have won back-to-back state titles, and he’s been the starting point guard on both. And there’s a decent chance that Mims will lead his team to a third straight title this winter. There’s just something about the ultra-quick lead guard that oozes leadership; and his high basketball IQ paired with a varied skill-set makes him one of Iowa’s most dangerous threats on the floor. It may take some time for Mims to get acclimated to the D1 game, but we wouldn’t be surprised if he worked his way into a starting point guard role before his career is done with TJ Otzleberger and South Dakota State.
— JackrabbitBasketball (@GoJacksMBB) November 8, 2017
Tommy Donovan, 6’2 G, Black Hills State (Carlisle)
This is a kid who knew what he wanted and went for it. Donovan will study political science at Black Hills State, a D2 school in Spearfish, SD; it’s a part of the country that he always liked. He went to a camp there over the summer, and performed well, shortly after, he was committed to play for the D2 program. Donovan is a kid who’s always been solid for Carlisle and Kingdom Hoops, and has gotten exponentially better over the past year-and-a-half. He averaged 10.7 points on 53 percent shooting last season as a junior, and also led his team in assist and steals. He’ll have a big-time senior season at Carlisle.
Congrats to Tommy Donovan on making it official today. Headed to Black Hills State to play hoops! 🏀 They're getting a great young man. pic.twitter.com/gdPMvFTCWP
— Carlisle Wildcats (@chswildcatpride) November 8, 2017