Over the past seven seasons at the helm of the Youngstown State Men's Basketball program, coach Jerry Slocum's recruiting classes have gotten gradually better from year to year.
This upcoming 2012 recruiting class may be his best yet.
As of today, Youngstown State has signed three talented recruits in the class: Bobby Hain from Jupiter, FL, Ryan Weber from Indianapolis, IN, and Kamren Belin from Marietta, GA. In addition, YSU recently offered a place to Ronnye Beamon from Hammond, IN, who could be that missing link in the Penguins' equation.
Bobby Hain is an outstanding forward that put up monster numbers in his senior season this past winter. Hain averaged 18.3 points and 9.2 rebounds per game and led Jupiter to the Florida District 9-8A Title. The Palm Beach Post said Hain "may be the best shooter in the area." Playing against Division 1 competition week in and week out, Hain will likely contribute right away for Youngstown State and could develop into a special player for the program.
Ryan Weber is a versatile guard that YSU was able to snag out of one of the best counties for Division 1 recruits in the country: Marion County, IN. Weber was named second-team All Marion County alongside recruits heading to Purdue, Indiana, Iowa, West Virginia and Kent State. That is quite the recognition for this mid-major recruit that chose Youngstown State over four other Division 1 programs. This past season, Weber averaged 14.8 points and 4.3 rebounds per game and led Bishop Roncalli High School to an impressive 17-4 mark on the campaign.
Kamren Belin is the most recent signing in the 2012 recruiting class. A junior college transfer from Cowley County Community College, Belin averaged 12 points, 7.7 rebounds and 1.8 blocks per game this past season. In addition, Belin averaged 78 percent at the free throw line, 46 percent from the field and 49 percent from beyond the three-point line. The 6'7" forward should compliment Damian Eargle nicely and will be projected as a starter entering this year's campaign.
Belin's consistency shooting the basketball will make him a threat for Horizon League competition over the next two years.
As solid as those three recruits are, I believe that one additional signing, Ronnye Beamon, would put this class over the top and make it great. Beamon, a guard out of Hammond, IN, is a terrific shooter that has garnered Division 1 offers from a total of 10 Division 1 programs. Beamon averaged 14.4 points and 5.2 rebounds this year and led Bishop Noll to a 19-4 record.
Beamon is a do-it-all type of recruit that is greatly needed on this team. He has a terrific shooting stroke from all over the floor, but his ability to drive the ball to the hole could get him significant playing time early with the program. In addition, Beamon's built 6'4" frame makes him a threat on the defensive side to get some steals or block some shots.
If Slocum could land Beamon in this class, I would label it as one of the best recruiting classes in over a decade for Youngstown State. Although they have yet to pick up a true No. 5 big man, this class would give YSU an opportunity to have sustained winning seasons. These are well-rounded basketball players that some 15 other Division 1 programs made offers to over the past year.
The fact that three have already chosen YSU over those other programs shows we are heading in the right direction.
UPDATE: Ronnye Beamon has verbally committed to Youngstown State University according to ScoutingIndiana and other media reports.