Wednesday was National Signing Day and it was a successful haul for the men’s and women’s programs at both Mizzou and Missouri State when it came to keeping home grown talent in the state at the D-I level. Here’s a look at signees for the Tigers and Bears.
Mizzou’s Cuonzo Martin signed five players including Springfield Kickapoo teammates Anton Brookshire and Trevon Brazile and 6’9 center Yaya Kieta from DeSmet, who according to Fox 2’s Charlie Marlow has a torn ACL and will miss his senior season.
Anton Brookshire – Guard – Springfield, Missouri – Kickapoo High School
Brookshire is a 6-foot playmaking point guard from Springfield, Missouri. The Kickapoo High School star is ranked No. 90 in ESPN’s 2021 Top 100 national rankings and tabbed the No. 3 player in the Show-Me state. Brookshire is a dynamic scorer, averaging 20.5 points, 4.0 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game as a junior, captaining his team to the Missouri Class 5 state tournament semifinals before it was canceled due to COVID-19.
Brookshire was named Missouri second-team all-state after a stellar junior campaign. In January, he shined at the high-profile Bass Pro Tournament of Champions, averaging 23.6 points, 5.7 boards and 3.3 assists and shooting 44.4 percent over three games against elite national competition. Brookshire lit up Oak Hill Academy to the tune of 33 points, draining 7-of-12 from beyond the arc, and encored with a 20-point outburst the following day vs. Christ the King.
Brookshire grew up in Milwaukee before moving to Springfield in sixth grade, where he lives with his uncle, former Missouri State standout Rob Yanders.
“Anton is a special player who can shoot the lights out from deep and beat you off the bounce,” Martin said. “He’s a scoring lead guard that will make his teammates around him better.”
Trevon Brazile – Forward – Springfield, Missouri – Kickapoo High School
Brazile is a 6-foot-8 athletic small forward with a 7-foot wingspan from Springfield. The homegrown standout is a ferocious dunker with a versatile offensive repertoire who excels at slashing the paint and finishing at the rim. Brazile’s athleticism allows him to alter shots defensively, protect the paint and guard multiple positions as a stretch-four.
Brazile averaged 11.2 points and 5.1 rebounds per game at Parkview High School as a junior before transferring to Kickapoo for his senior campaign. Brazile exploded on the travel circuit following his junior campaign and committed to the Tigers the day he received an offer, calling Mizzou “the place he always wanted to be.”
“Trevon is an explosive athlete who has the potential to be a really good player on both ends of the floor because he’s multi-dimensional,” Martin said. “His quickness at his size and length is very difficult to defend.”
Kaleb Brown – Guard – Huntsville, Alabama – Lee High School
Brown, the brother of current Tiger standout Kobe Brown, joins the Mizzou family, choosing Martin’s program over Minnesota and West Virginia, among others. Kaleb is a 6-foot-6 combo guard with the ability to bring the ball up the floor or slash from the wing, causing mismatch problems with size paired with speed and ballhandling.
Kaleb and Kobe reunite after leading Lee High School to more than 20 wins in 2018-19 and an area championship. Kaleb is a student of the game, who played for his father, Greg, in high school and has grown up around basketball since birth.
“Kaleb is the type of high-character guy you want in a program who studies the game all the time,” Martin said. “He embodies everything we talk about when we say Big Guard U at Mizzou, combining tremendous ballhandling skills with strength in the paint and the ability to finish at the rim through contact.”
Sean Durugordon – Forward – Queens, New York – Putnam Science Academy (CT)
Durugordon is a 6-foot-7, 215-pound combo forward ranked as the No. 38 small forward nationally by Rivals. The 3-star New York native chose Mizzou over Arizona State, Auburn and Seton Hall, among others, and plans to enroll early at Mizzou, joining the squad in January of 2021.
As a junior at Canterbury, Durugordon averaged 23 points and 11.5 rebounds per game while shooting 44 percent from 3-point range and leading his team to a 21-2 overall record.
Durugordon is the first Queens native to join the program since Mizzou’s all-time leading scorer Derrick Chievous put together one of the best careers in program history from 1984-88.
“Sean is a physical player with a high basketball IQ who brings his hard hat on both ends of the floor,” Martin said. “He attacks the glass relentlessly and can guard every position. He’s a tough-minded guy who empties the tank every time he steps on the floor.”
Yaya Keita – Center – St. Louis, Missouri – De Smet Jesuit High School
Keita is a 6-foot-9 center ranked in Rivals’ Top 150 nationally at No. 145. He’s been tabbed the nation’s No. 24-ranked center, choosing Mizzou over Iowa, Iowa State and West Virginia, among others.
Keita plays for Kent Williams at De Smet, who served as an assistant coach and hit the recruiting trail under Martin at both Tennessee and Missouri State. Keita shot 51.2 percent from the field as a junior, averaging 8.0 points and 9.2 rebounds. The 225-pound center is a force defensively, cleaning up the glass and altering shots in the paint. Keita notably snagged 26 rebounds in a single game as a sophomore.
Keita moved to the United States from Mali before high school, growing up a soccer player before switching to hoops, and his game has blossomed every year since.
“Yaya is dominant defensively, and fits everything we expect in our program,” Martin said. “He plays hard, he plays tough, and he rebounds and defends with the best of them. We’re excited to keep developing his game when he arrives on campus.”
Mizzou’s 2020-21 campaign begins Nov. 25 vs. Oral Roberts at Mizzou Arena.
Brookshire and Brazile’s Kickapoo teammate Isaac Haney has signed with Missouri State.
Haney is a 6-foot-2, 160-pound senior guard, currently enrolled at Kickapoo High School in Springfield. He spent his first three high school seasons at nearby Dora High School where he was named Missouri’s Class 1 Player of the Year each of the past two seasons.
“We are really excited to add a quality person like Isaac to our program,” said Ford. “He is a high-caliber student from a great family, and we are really looking forward to him becoming a Bear.”
In 2019-20, Haney helped lead Dora to a Class 1 state title and 32-2 overall record after averaging 31.0 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game for coach Rick Luna. He also knocked down 114 3-pointers at a 37-percent clip, made 82 percent of his free throws and shot 53 percent overall from the field.
Powered by his 1,055 points as a junior, Haney became Dora’s career scoring leader as a junior while wrapping up all-conference, all-district and all-state accolades for the third straight season.
Coach Mox and the 24th ranked Lady Bears signed two in-state stars. Lindsey Byers for Helias Catholic in Jeff City and Isabelle Delarue from Francis Howell North, both are guards.
Lindsey Byers • 5-9 • G • Jefferson City, Mo. • Helias Catholic High
A second-generation Missouri State student-athlete whose father Steve played baseball for the Bears in the early 1980s, Byers averaged 14.5 points, 6.0 rebounds, 3.6 assists and 3.1 steals per game as a junior, leading the Lady Crusaders to their first district title in six years. The left-hander has also earned multiple all-tournament and tournament MVP honors thus far in her prep career.
Coach Mox on Byers:
“Lindsey is a very underrated combo guard with a high basketball IQ. She is a great facilitator who understands when a big shot needs to be taken. She is not scared of the moment and can stretch the floor with her 3-point shot or rip and drive and finish through contact. She has great length which allows her to play angles well on the defensive end. I am thrilled to have her as she is a high character student-athlete who definitely has a bright future here and will excel in our FAB culture!”
Isabelle Delarue • 5-11 • G • St. Charles, Mo. • Francis Howell North High
Entering her fourth year as starter for Francis Howell North High, Delarue surpassed 1,000 career points during her junior campaign, averaging 20.8 points 8.5 rebounds and 3.0 steals per game and shooting 75 percent from the foul line on the way to her second consecutive first-team all-district and all-conference nods. She set a school single-game record with 37 points against Troy during her junior year, and posted averages of 14.8 points, 6.5 boards and 2.0 steals while shooting 77 percent from the free throw stripe as a sophomore. Delarue was a second-team all-conference and all-district selection after averaging 9.6 points and 6.5 rebounds her freshman season.
Coach Mox on Delarue:
“Izzy is a prolific scorer! She is a lethal threat behind the arc, as she can shoot the ball in a multitude of ways. She will ultimately help open up a lot for our post players because of the attention she attracts at the 3-point line. She is a big guard who knows how to use her body and get in the paint as well. She’s very crafty finisher at the rim who can also rebound and defend. Izzy flourishes in transition, whether she is pulling up for the 3 or getting run-out layups! She is another high character kid who I am extremely excited to coach. It will be a seamless merge for her into our family and our style of play.”
Taylor Woodhouse • 5-7 • G • Southaven, Miss. • Southaven High
One of the top players in Mississippi, Woodhouse is in her fourth season as a starting point guard and averaged six assists per game each of her first three prep seasons. Woodhouse averaged 20 points per contest and eclipsed 1,000 career points as a junior, earning first-team all-region and all-district honors while playing for Bartlett (Tenn.) High. Woodhouse is back at Southaven (Miss.) High as a senior after playing for the Chargers as a sophomore and freshman. She averaged 23 points during her sophomore season and scored 16 per game as a freshman, when she was ranked as the No. 1 freshman in Mississippi. Woodhouse was named to the Clarion-Ledger’s Dandy Dozen squad entering this season, a list representing the best prep players in the state.
Coach Mox on Woodhouse:
“Taylor is a hard-working, determined, high IQ point guard, who will impact our program in numerous ways. Her character, work ethic, and resilience make her unique! Her ability to stretch the floor from the point guard spot is key. She can shoot the 3 from deep and/or off the bounce. She has a very good handle and can get to the paint and create. All in all, she is a dynamic scorer and passer. I’m excited to coach her as she fits our family on and off the court!”
Robin Pingeton at Mizzou signed two top 100 prospects and another Linthacum. Sarah who plays for Jefferson City will join her sister Micah who is a redshirt freshman but a long line of Linthacum’s who have played for the Tigers, including their dad, their grandfather and their great grandfather. Kiya Dorroh, Isabella Higginbottom, Sarah Linthacum and Da’Necia Trusty each signed National Letters of Intent.
Dorroh, a 6-1 forward from Tuscon, Ariz., is the No. 47 overall recruit in the Class of 2021, according to ESPNW, and the top-ranked player from the state of Arizona. As a junior at Sabino High School, Dorroh led her team to the Class 3A State Championship after averaging 15.9 points, 5.7 rebounds and 4.3 steals per game. She was named the Prep Girls Hoops Arizona Player of the Year and the Class 3A South Offensive Player of the Year following her junior campaign and received first team honors for Max Preps Arizona All-State and Arizona 3A All-Region. For her senior season, Dorroh will follow the path of Arizona’s best players and play at the AZ Compass Prep School in Chandler, Ariz. A top-10 ranked wing player nationally, Dorroh chose Mizzou over North Carolina, Nebraska, Vanderbilt and Texas. Outside of basketball, Dorroh is a three-time academic honor roll recipient and has participated in the African American Career Fair for High Achievers multiple times.
“I chose Mizzou because of the amazing family atmosphere that the coaches and players made me feel the very first time I stepped on campus,” said Dorroh. “I’m excited to play and practice against the best, and I look forward to growing as a basketball player and as a woman.”
Higginbottom, a 5-7 point guard from Batesville, Ark., will make the trip north to Columbia for her collegiate career. The No. 20-ranked point guard by ESPNW and the No. 97 overall recruit by Prospect Nation, Higginbottom led Batesville High School to the 2019 Class 4A State championship and a state semifinals appearance in 2020. She was named the tournament MVP during her team’s state title run, and is a two-time Arkansas all-state selection, earning the honor as a sophomore (2018-19) and a junior (2019-20). Entering her senior campaign at Batesville, the three-year starter has recorded 1,755 points, 226 assists and 265 steals while shooting 86.4 percent from the free throw line. Outside of basketball, Higginbottom has maintained a 4.0 GPA, has twice been named Student of the Month, and is active in the FCA and Special Olympics.
“I chose Mizzou because I felt it would be the best education and athletic program to raise my human potential,” said Higginbottom. “Because I want to continually grow as a student and an athlete, I felt Mizzou would be the best school to push me to reach my goals. I am looking forward to learning, growing, meeting new people, and competing as a student-athlete over the next four years.”
Linthacum, a 6-0 forward from Jefferson City, Mo., will follow her sister, Micah, and three generations before her when she suits up in the Black & Gold for the Tigers. Linthacum earned 2019-20 MBCA Class 5 All-State honors as a junior after averaging 11.0 points and 8.0 rebounds per game for the Jefferson City Jays. Her sister Micah, is currently a redshirt freshman for Coach Pingeton’s squad, while their dad, Larry, their grandfather and great grandfather all played football for Mizzou. Linthacum played for Missouri Phenom on the AAU circuit.
Mizzou has always been my dream school,” said Linthacum. “Growing up, I always knew this was where I wanted to be and I’m so excited to make it official.”
Trusty, a 6-3 forward from Houston, Texas, will add size to the frontcourt for Mizzou. In her junior season (2019-20) at Alief Hastings High School, Trusty averaged 16.7 points, 12.1 rebounds and 7.6 blocks per game while earning first-team all-district honors. An incredibly talented rebounder and shot-blocker, at one point, Trusty led the nation in blocks during her junior campaign (8.3 bpg), as well as a rebounding average that was among the nation’s best. Outside of basketball, Trusty also lettered in volleyball and track & field, and received academic achievement honors.
“I’m so glad the day is finally here that I can officially say I have a second family,” said Trusty. “Since I became a prospect for Mizzou, I immediately clicked with the coaching staff and knew this would be the place for me. Mizzou is a school full of love, joy, and new beginnings and I’m eager to be a part of the basketball program as well as further my education in the medical field.”