Prep Basketball

Mount Vernon's Keaton Kutcher commits to play college basketball at South Dakota

Credits relationship with assistant coach, Iowa native Casey Kasperbauer for winning him over

Mount Vernon's Keaton Kutcher (22) works toward the hoop during the fourth quarter of their Class 3A substate final at t
Mount Vernon’s Keaton Kutcher (22) works toward the hoop during the fourth quarter of their Class 3A substate final at the U.S. Cellular Center in Cedar Rapids on Monday, March 2, 2020. (Andy Abeyta/The Gazette)

CEDAR RAPIDS — Casey Kasperbauer was promoted to full-fledged assistant coach for the South Dakota men’s basketball program last month.

The Iowa native already has successfully snagged his first recruit.

Mount Vernon senior Keaton Kutcher announced Tuesday he has verbally committed to the Coyotes. The all-state guard chalked up his relationship with Kasperbauer as a big reason he eventually will be headed northwest.

“They have been talking to me for a couple of months, and I have always heard great stuff about their facilities, and knew their team was,” Kutcher said. “But when their brand new assistant, Casey Kasperbauer, started talking with me about how I would fit in there, I knew it was the right fit for me.”

Kutcher averaged 20 points per game as Mount Vernon made the Class 3A state tournament this past season. A shooter deluxe, he hit 75 3-pointers in 23 games, making 39 percent from beyond the arc.

His only other Division I offer to this point was from Western Illinois, with several D-II schools showing serious interest.

Kasperbauer is a Carroll Kuemper graduate who had a stellar playing career for South Dakota. He was director of basketball operations for head coach Todd Lee until officially moving up the ladder, so to speak, in July.

“Casey is a 6-foot-2 kid from Iowa who could really shoot,” Kutcher said. “And he scored 1,000 points there and had an amazing career. When he was talking to me about going there, it was the first time I really visualized myself in a college situation where I could really thrive.

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“And as time kept going, I met more of their coaches and got really comfortable with their staff and knew I would fit in there, have lots of success, be in a good environment, get a great education, and win lots of basketball games. Sounds like the perfect scenario to me.”

Comments: (319) 398-8259; jeff.johnson@thegazette.com

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