Dedric Lawson to Memphis: Tigers Land 2016 5-Star PF Prospect

Joseph ZuckerFeatured ColumnistJuly 20, 2014

Credit: 247Sports

Four days after his father, Keelon, became an assistant coach at Memphis, Dedric Lawson chose to stay at home and commit to the Tigers, per's Gary Parrish.

The player confirmed the decision on Sunday.    

"With [my father] being on staff, there's no other college I would rather go to," Lawson told reporters.

However, Jeff Goodman of ESPN reported that Lawson won't officially seal the deal until Tuesday:

Parrish wrote that bringing on Keelon Lawson was likely the deciding factor in securing Dedric Lawson's commitment:

(Memphis head coach Josh) Pastner's hiring of Keelon Lawson has been viewed in college basketball circles as smart and mostly essential considering multiple sources have told that if Memphis didn't make the hire then some other Division I program would've. Keelon Lawson told in May that he had spoken with at least one other program about possibly joining its staff. But the former college player who won a state championship in 2009 while coaching Hamilton High in Memphis always made it clear that his preference was to take a job at Memphis and keep his family in its hometown, and that became a reality last week.

Adam Zagoria of called it a "brilliant move" on Pastner's part regarding the hiring of of Keelon Lawson:

Of course, it was a bit of a gamble. Parrish wonders what would have happened to Lawson if his son would have chosen somewhere else instead of Memphis:

It will truly be a family affair at the FedExForum, with class of 2015 signee K.J. Lawson also on his way to Memphis, per Alex Kline of The Recruit Scoop:

According to 247Sports' composite ranking, Lawson is the best power forward in the class of 2016 and seventh-best prospect overall in the country. Although it's still early, the Tigers have moved into second place—behind Pittsburgh—on 247Sports' composite team rankings for the 2016 class.

Listed at 6'8" and 195 pounds on 247Sports, Lawson is a much better ball-handler than most would expect for somebody of his size and possesses the vision to find the open man when the opportunity presents itself.

The Hamilton High School standout is also a fantastic shooter. Opposing defenses will have a ton of trouble handling him because he can spot up from the perimeter just as easily as he can get inside and score in the post.

Lawson will have very little transition necessary when he hits the college level.

Pastner has done well to follow such a successful coach like John Calipari, but he has so far been unable to get Memphis to reach the same highs it experienced under Calipari. Adding Lawson can help the Tigers reach that next level once again when he arrives in two years.

If Lawson can continue to develop his skills and fill out his frame in the coming years, he should be a dominant force by the time he takes the court for Memphis.