NORMAN — The future looks pretty good for the Oklahoma men's basketball team.
On signing day last week, the Sooners signed three players, including a pair in the Rivals150 ranking of the nation's top recruits.
It's not the best recruiting class in the Big 12, or even in the state, but the Sooners addressed their needs with the class.
Even next season, barring unforeseen circumstances, the Sooners will have plenty of returning talent at guard. Buddy Hield, Isaiah Cousins and Je'lon Hornbeak will be juniors, and Jordan Woodard and Frank Booker sophomores.
They lose only Cameron Clark and Tyler Neal off this year's team, which sits 3-0 entering Friday's Coaches vs. Cancer Classic in Brooklyn, and they will be young again next season with just two seniors.
So OU appeared to address its biggest needs by beefing up its frontcourt with this year's class, adding 6-foot-7 swingman Dante Buford, 6-9 forward Khadeem Lattin and 6-9 center Jamuni McNeace.
“All three are really quality people who want to be Sooners,” Sooners coach Lon Kruger said in a statement last week. “They want to be here, they're good students, rangy athletes and good teammates. They're all similar with their qualities, and they fit perfectly in terms of what we're looking for.”
It all came together in a little more than a month, with the Sooners not receiving their first commitment until McNeace committed in early October.
McNeace is the one not ranked in the Rivals150.
His high school coach, Jeff McCullough, is plenty familiar with the Sooners, especially Clark. He coached Clark in high school and coached in Norman before taking the job in Allen, Texas.
“I would put him in a similar athletic category as Cameron Clark with a little more size and about a seven-foot wingspan,” McCullough said in a release. “He really blossomed late last season and in the spring and summer.”
McNeace has been a quick developer, playing really only two years of basketball after growing nearly a foot since his freshman year.
“He's still learning the game and making some changes on how he approaches it mentally and with some basketball I.Q. things,” McCullough said.
While Lattin's game has a lot of similarities with current Sooners' forward D.J. Bennett, Kruger sees plenty of room for enhancement.
“Because of his attitude and work ethic, he's got a tremendous upside in terms of where he's going to go as a player,” Kruger said. “Right now, he's thought of more of a shot-blocker and a defensive guys, but I think he has a ton of potential offensively.”