Athletics

Men's Basketball

2014-15 Season Outlook

Northeast has high hopes with new recruits. Northeast Community College is playing with the big dogs now in the Iowa Community College Conference.

Coach Dan Anderson says he just signed the recruiting class he needs to compete with Iowa Western, Indian Hills, Marshalltown and Southeastern, all strong Division I junior college programs. The Hawks finished 15-16 last year and were 13-4 before starting league play.

“I think we can be right there in the mix of it all,” Anderson said. “The real worry is, our big kids are young and have to grow up real quick.”

Ten players have signed with the Hawks, including UNO transfer Jalen Bradley and Omaha Westside guard Kevin Metoyer. He’s also added 6’8, 6’9 and 6’10 post players to give Northeast some needed height.

Anderson said this class has the potential to be the best ever at the Norfolk school, which switched to the Iowa league three years ago to cut down on travel.

“We’re really happy with this group,” ‘ he said. “We’re strong at all positions.”

That could mean eventual Division I opportunities for many of them.

He said that could happen for Metoyer, who averaged 15.6 points, 6.8 assists and 3.3 rebounds a game last year for the Warriors, the Class A state runners-up.

Anderson said Metoyer was overshadowed some by Khyri Thomas of Omaha Benson, the captain of the World-Herald’s All-Nebraska squad. Recruiters also are usually looking for 6’3 guards, and Metoyer is 5’9.

The coach said if Metoyer can get his teammates involved and put up good numbers, the offers will be there. He thinks he’s one of the best guards in the state.

“He has to prove he can play well in our league,” Anderson said. “We play in the most difficult league in the nation. If he does well in our ballgames, he will be seen.”

Bradley, who is from Norfolk, played 13 games for UNO last season before he was sidelined by injuries. Anderson said he just needs some playing time in the one year he’ll play for the Hawks.

If Metoyer can get Bradley the ball, the coach said, there’s a great chance he’s going to score. Bradley finished with 1,638 points in high school.

“He’s an excellent shooter,” Anderson said. “I just think he’s going to have a really good career.”

Other names in the class are 6’3 forward Peirre Conwell, St. Paul, Minnesota; 5’11 guard Shawn Lipscomb, Durham, North Carolina; 6’0 guard Trevon Moody, Sioux Falls, South Dakota; 6’11 post Boris Rajovic, Dahilovgraol, Montenegro; 6’9 post Torrell Sutton, Hamilton, Ohio; 6’5 forward Dishawn Thompson, Brampton, Ontario; 6’8 post Omar Venable, Lithonia, Georgia; and 6’4 guard L.J. Westbrook, Salem, Oregon.

Thompson is the brother of Cleveland Cavaliers forward Tristan Thompson. The older Thompson is a big fan of his brother and is likely to attend some games. Anderson said it would be cool if he’d bring his teammate, LeBron James.

“That would be neat, wouldn’t it?” Anderson said, laughing.

Northeast has three players returning: Chima Moneke, Canberra, Australia; Dionte Smith, Nassau, Bahamas; and Omaha South graduate Buay Tuach, a 6’6 wing player.

Tuach averaged about eight points and six rebounds last winter. “He’ll be a key player,” Anderson said, “because he’s hard to guard, and he’s a lockdown defender.”

“He played in a couple of different exposure camps and was well liked at those places,” Anderson said. “He has to make sure he gets his degree, and he’ll be off to a D-1 place.”

Anderson said Lyle Hexom, who also played at South, has decided to move on to another school.