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Oklahoma State basketball gets Marcus Smart

OKLAHOMA STATE BASKETBALL — OSU basketball coach Travis Ford signs another strong recruiting class, led by Flower Mound, Texas, guard Marcus Smart.
By JOHN HELSLEY, Staff Writer, jhelsley@opubco.com Modified: November 9, 2011 at 5:12 pm •  Published: November 9, 2011
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Travis Ford remains committed to returning the rowdy to Gallagher-Iba Arena.

On the recruiting trail, the analysts say Ford is doing his part.

For the second straight year, the Oklahoma State coach signed an elite national recruit, landing five-star guard Marcus Smart as the centerpiece of a three-player class. ESPN.com ranks Smart, a 6-foot-4 combo guard from Flower Mound Marcus in Texas, as the No. 11 overall prospect and ranks OSU's 2012 class at No. 23 nationally.

Last year, the Cowboys signed Le'Bryan Nash, a consensus top-10 prospect ranked as high as No. 4 by some recruiting services.

Along with Smart, OSU also signed two three-star prospects: Smart's Marcus High teammate, 5-11 guard Phil Forte; and 6-8 power forward Kamari Murphy, a Brooklyn native playing at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla.

“We're very excited about all three,” Ford said. “They all really have distinctive individual skills, but they all have one thing in common: they're all high-character guys who love winning and are used to winning. And love to play the game.

“All three of them are gym rats who live in the gym. All three of these guys fit my personality.”

Smart draws high marks with analysts not only for his skills, but his demeanor.

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