The men’s basketball program wasted no time in signing three big-time guards for the 2021-2022 season on early signing day last week, adding Daeshun Ruffin, James White and Grant Slatten to the roster on Nov. 11.
The pandemic forced coaches to find different ways of approaching recruiting this year since recruits could not physically visit any schools. Turns out, UM men’s basketball head coach Kermit Davis is a pretty good salesman.
“It’s an outstanding day for Ole Miss Basketball with the signing of three very talented players,” said Davis on early signing day. “They are terrific offensive players with the ability to score the ball at all levels. All three young men come from unbelievable families and support systems, and we can’t wait to get them to Oxford this summer. Our fan base will have a fun time following all of these guys during their senior years.”
Ruffin, a native of the magnolia state, is the highest-rated recruit to come out of Mississippi this year. Ruffin is also the highest-rated recruit in program history. ESPN listed him as the No. 21 prospect in the nation as well as a four-star athlete. Ruffin helped lead the Callaway High School Chargers to a state championship in 2020, earning him Mississippi Gatorade Player of the Year.
“Getting the very best player in the state of Mississippi is always a priority for us,” Davis said. “Daeshun is a dynamic guard that scores at all three levels. He’s a proven winner, leading Callaway to a state championship in 2020. Daeshun plays for one of the very best coaches in our state, David Sanders, and comes from a fantastic family.”
James White, a 6’5” guard out of Conyers, Ga., continues to add depth at the guard position. White had an impressive junior season with over 700 points and is heading into his senior season as the No. 9 player in the state.
“James White has a great skill level as a long, athletic guard that is one of the very best scorers in the state of Georgia,” said Davis. “He loves ball, enjoys being in the gym and is set for a fantastic senior year. James has an unbelievable support system around him.”
The Rebel coaching staff has shown optimism and excitement about the No. 7 rated player out of Sparta, Tenn. Slatten is another 6’5” addition who has no problem putting up impressive numbers with an average of 26.8 points per game. Slatten was named to the 3AAA All-Region and 6AAA All-District tournament in his high school career, obtaining the awards three times apiece.
This recruiting class will be huge additions to the already growing program that Davis is building. While these recruits will not be in the Pavilion this year, fans will still be able to watch the 2020-2021 team compete starting Nov. 25 -27 for the Justin Reed Ole Miss Classic.