Iowa Men's Basketball

Iowa men's basketball recruiting: Fran McCaffery discusses his 2020 class

Iowa coach gets a center, 2 forwards and 2 guards

Cedar Rapids Prairie's Keegan Murray (center) goes up to block a shot by North Scott's Tavi Seales (left) during a state Class 4A substate game at Liberty High School in North Liberty on 2.26.18. Murray's brother, Kris, is behind Seales. Keegan and Kris are part of Iowa's 2020 men's basketball recruiting class. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)
Cedar Rapids Prairie's Keegan Murray (center) goes up to block a shot by North Scott's Tavi Seales (left) during a state Class 4A substate game at Liberty High School in North Liberty on 2.26.18. Murray's brother, Kris, is behind Seales. Keegan and Kris are part of Iowa's 2020 men's basketball recruiting class. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)

The University of Iowa has signed a new men’s basketball team.

Well, not technically. But Coach Fran McCaffery recently got signed national letters of intent from a point guard, a shooting guard, two forwards and a post player in his 2020 recruiting class.

Here is something about each player, including what McCaffery said about them Monday afternoon:

Keegan Murray

6-foot-8 forward, Cedar Rapids Prairie/DME Sports Academy

Former Hawkeye forward Kenyon Murray’s twin sons are spending post graduate seasons at DME Sports Academy in Daytona Beach, Fla. In his senior season at Prairie, he averaged 20.3 points, 7.2 points and 3.1 assists.

Kris Murray

6-7 forward, Cedar Rapids Prairie/DME Sports Academy

Averaged 18.4 points, 6.3 rebounds and 2.5 blocks for Prairie a season ago.

McCaffery said: “I don’t know that you necessarily have to differentiate between them because they both do everything well. That’s the beauty of it. They both can dribble, they both can pass, they both can rebound.

“They have a real good feel for the game. ... If you’re pressing in the backcourt and throw it to them, they’re going to take it and make a play. If you’re running a motion game, they have a feel (for it). If you’re running sets, you can set them up to make shots because they can score inside and out.

“They’ve both been kind of wing players, and now they can play in today’s world as post players, they can play as guards, and they can play as wings.

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“They’re both so long, so they can defend, and they rebound their positions. ... They’re both the kind of player who at the end of the game is going to have numbers, going to have points, rebounds, assists. They’re not mistake guys.”

Josh Ogundele

6-10 center, Worcester (Mass.) Academy

Ogundele moved to Worcester from England two years ago. More major-college programs, Cincinnati included, vied for Ogundele than any other Iowa signee in the last few years. He averaged 7.3 points last season Worcester. He was signed days after Oskaloosa big man Xavier Foster chose Iowa State over Iowa.

McCaffery said: “He’s got toughness and competitive instincts. I just think he’s going to get better and better. He can rebound. He’s a big, wide-bodied kid, but he can run, and he fits perfectly into what we’re trying to do.”

Tony Perkins

6-4 shooting guard, Indianapolis

Averaged 15.9 points, 4.8 rebounds and 3 assists as a junior at Lawrence North High School. His other offers included Ball State, Bradley and Toledo.

McCaffery said: “He has tremendous athletic power. A really good feel, but he’s also an intense competitor.

“He can play 1-2-3 (point guard, shooting guard, small forward).”

Ahron Ulis

6-2 point guard, Chicago Heights, Ill.

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Ulis helped Marian Catholic High to its first state-tournament appearance when he was a sophomore and 53 wins over the last two seasons. He averaged 18 points and 5 assists last season. He had offers from DePaul, Northern Illinois and Tulane.

He is the brother of Tyler Ulis, who chose Kentucky over Iowa and who has played in 133 NBA games.

McCaffery said: “Ahron is a gamer and he’s a competitor. He plays the game at a whole another level in terms of mental approach, yet he also has the physical skills necessary to compete at this level.

“Ahron can defend multiple positions. He can play point, he can guard, he can make plays off the dribble, he can make shots.”

Comments: (319) 368-8840; mike.hlas@thegazette.com

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