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Chicago point guard signs with Mizzou

April 11, 2018 GMT

COLUMBIA, MO. • Missouri has officially made a much-needed addition to its backcourt. Chicago point guard Xavier Pinson, committed to the Tigers since February, signed his national letter of intent on Wednesday, the first day of the NCAA’s spring signing period.

The three-star point guard from Simeon Career Academy in Chicago gives Mizzou four additions for the 2018 recruiting class. Back in November, the Tigers signed three players, two with area ties: Whitfield School guard Torrence Watson and former Belleville East guard Javon Pickett. Mizzou also signed forward K.J. Santos, who played at Illinois-Chicago in 2016-17.

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Pinson, rated the nation’s No. 34 point guard by Rivals.com, committed to Kent State in October then dropped his pledge within a week. While he began to draw more interest from high-major conference programs, Pinson picked up a Mizzou offer from Cuonzo Martin’s staff in late January. Pinson took an official recruiting visit to Columbia in February and attended the Tigers’ victory over Kentucky. He chose MU over Georgetown and Wisconsin.

Last summer, Pinson transferred from Chicago’s St. Patrick High School to Simeon, the national powerhouse program that’s produced former Illinois stars Nick Anderson and Deon Thomas and more recently NBA players Derrick Rose and Jabari Parker.

As of Wednesday, Rivals.com ranked Mizzou’s class No. 42 nationally.

The Tigers have only one returning point guard on the roster, Jordan Geist, who became Martin’s primary ball-handler this past season. Mizzou has six scholarship players set to return next season, plus the four signed newcomers, leaving Martin three more available scholarships. Jontay Porter has declared for the NBA draft but hasn’t hired an agent, meaning he could return for his sophomore season if he doesn’t like his draft feedback from NBA teams. Should he return, Martin would have two more scholarships available.

Mizzou continues to pursue Webster Groves senior point guard Courtney Ramey, who last week announced a list of his top 10 schools: Mizzou, Illinois, Louisville, Minnesota, Ohio State, Oklahoma State, Oregon, SMU, South Carolina and Texas. New Louisville coach Chris Mack has since told reporters that he’s not recruiting the four-star Ramey. Illinois is not expected to heavily recruit Ramey after landing a commitment from Andres Feliz, the nation’s top-rated junior college point guard.

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