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Stephen F. Austin Basketball Recruiting

Pair of 2018 commitments headline productive day for SFA hoops

July 6, 2017
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Have you heard of Mitchell Seraille or Jock Hughes?

If you follow Stephen F. Austin basketball, there's a good chance they'll be quite familiar names in short order.

On a particularly productive July 6th, the Lumberjacks landed their first two 2018 verbal commitments in a long summer recruiting season that has seen 27 visits over the past two months. The duo  - who also happen be high school teammates - together fill two of the three projected open spots on a Lumberjacks roster that has been essentially rebuilt in a year since head coach Kyle Keller took the reigns of the program.

A couple big gets, we should add.

Mitchell Seraille, a 6-foot-7 consensus four-star prospect, is listed by 247Sports as the 41st best power forward in his class nationally. Among all prospects in Texas, he is ranked 17th. Some who have watched him play feel those numbers may actually do an injustice to his potential as a collegiate basketball player. Seraille, who also saw interest from the University of Texas, UTSA, Old Dominion, La Salle, and fellow Southland Conference teams in New Orleans and Incarnate Word, played alongside 2017 signee Cameron Mack in the AAU ranks for the Houston Defenders.

In fact, the whole Mack to Seraille thing is probably worth getting used to:

"Cam is like a big brother to me," Seraille told The Sawmill. "We had a great relationship when we played together." At SFA, that relationship now looks to continue. An athlete who can elevate and shoot, Mitchell can be a scorer and prolific shot blocker. He's not the only Yates High School product who can play basketball, though.

A few short hours after Seraille announced his intention to commit on Twitter, his high school teammate, point guard Jock Hughes joined in the fun:
Hughes is an interesting story because folks around the SFA program believe they may have pulled off the steal of the year in his commitment. "The single most underrated player in the state of Texas," one coach told us.

Confidence certainly does not escape Hughes. "I feel like me and Mitch can dominate in the Southland and make an immediate impact as freshmen," he told The Sawmill after his Twitter announcement on Thursday.

As a junior at Yates, the 6-foot-1 Hughes scored 52 points in one game. He largely flew under the radar in recruiting circles, something SFA is probably quite thankful for, but there is a belief that he could be a huge asset for the Lumberjacks. "A very high-level player," says an SFA basketball source who has studied his play.

The pair of commitments come as SFA prepares to open a season with 2017 freshmen Cameron Mack, Stefon Fisher, and transfers John Comeaux and Shannon Bogues joining a team that finished second place in the Southland Conference in 2016-17. The season ended a run of three-straight NCAA Tournament appearances for the Lumberjacks which included wins over VCU and West Virginia in the Round of 64.

The winning culture has not escaped the walls of William R. Johnson Coliseum. Even without considering the pedigree of Keller's staff, the source of SFA's brilliant recruiting run is not hard to trace. Just ask the athletes.

"My favorite thing is just the culture and the way the fans love basketball in Nacogdoches," Hughes tells us. "It's a great basketball program," echos Seraille. "I'm comfortable with the environment and people. The coaches' loyalty is different. They're more like family."

The general mood around the league is that the 2017-18 title, again, might be SFA's to lose. By adding pieces like this duo from Houston, that could well be the preseason story every year - at least for awhile.

Pair of 2018 commitments headline productive day for SFA hoops

40,187 Views | 104 Replies | Last: 4 yr ago by Gazette1
sfa17
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great day to be a lumberjack fan. two really good Texas players. Cant wait to see what this duo can do their senior year at Yates.
SFA Jack Fanatic
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Two of our three open 2018 scholarships are now taken. This may make someone else grab the remaining one pretty fast while they can. I'm thinking that we'd better buckle up for one more "Shot of Jacks" (sorry Isaac) soon!
nacluth
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My calendar seems to be filled up way in advance now. Maybe I won't be so sad to see this summer end...or the next!
Ryan
Kinnaird Guitars
corleycl
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March article from the Houston Chronicle when Yates fell to Silsbee. Both Jock Hughes and Mitchell Seraille are mentioned as being standouts for Yates: http://www.chron.com/sports/highschool/article/Silsbee-advances-to-second-straight-state-10977697.php
No-look
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Silsbee's depth won that game. They had about twelve that could start on most any high school team. Some have already received D1 offers. The Yates/Silsbee game this year will most likely determine the regional champion.
sfa17
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Gazette1
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Shouldn't Nathan Bain get a medical redshirt year. He should be listed as a soph with three years of eligibility left.
SFA Jack Fanatic
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Gazette1 said:

Shouldn't Nathan Bain get a medical redshirt year. He should be listed as a soph with three years of eligibility left.
He did.
Gazette1
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Is the entire team in camp yet? who will be the next to commit?
CottonValleyJack
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Great adds! Kudos to Keller and his staff!
Gazette1
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Isn't it time for the whole team to be on campus?
No-look
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Gazette1 said:

Isn't it time for the whole team to be on campus?
Was wondering that myself?
Gazette1
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They have posted the new roster on the basketball web page. They must have done that today. I see no surprises. They must all be on campus. They list Comeau as a sophomore.
SFA Jack Fanatic
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Gazette1 said:

They have posted the new roster on the basketball web page. They must have done that today. I see no surprises. They must all be on campus. They list Comeau as a sophomore.

Comeaux is a soph. He played one year at Lamar College - Pt. Arthur.
SFAXE93
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What happened to Derrick Jones, no longer on coaching staff?
"History has no rubbish heap." Louis Blake Duff
Gazette1
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I think that is who Desmond Haymon replaced. I never saw any announcement about him leaving though.

updatehttp://www.theadvocate.com/baton_rouge/sports/high_schools/article_6b2166aa-7590-11e7-a714-ab3b46b29c88.html
PurpleOut
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Staff
Yeah that's interesting, not sure how that went so unnoticed.
Jon
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Whole team doesn't have to be on-campus just yet. When Fall semester starts they do. Not sure about Isaac on MBB schedule, but I should be receiving Fall WBB practice schedule soon. That will tell us when they need to be here if nothing else.
- Jon Godeaux
Gazette1
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They must be all here because they don't usually put them on the roster until they are enrolled. The roster they have up on the site is for 2017-18.
Gazette1
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verbal commits
Recent Activity
  • 8/13/2017 - 2017 PG Cameron Mack (6-3, 170, 2) has enrolled in school and been added to the official team roster.
  • 8/13/2017 - 2017 PF Stefon Fisher (6-8, 230, 2) has enrolled in school and been added to the official team roster.
  • 8/13/2017 - JUCO PG John Comeaux (6-0, -, 2) has enrolled in school and been added to the official team roster.
  • 8/13/2017 - JUCO PG Shannon Bogues (6-3, -, 2) has enrolled in school and been added to the official team roster.
Gazette1
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Likele committed to Fresno State.
Gazette1
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Can't help but notice that Leon Gilmores name has been removed from the basketball roster and that he is not in the team picture.
nacluth
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Isaac has addressed it, and said he'll report on it when he has the freedom to tell us what happened.
Ryan
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Gazette1
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Keller seems to have problems getting his ducks in a row. It's always easy to second guess but I saw this one coming and felt like that Keller should have dismissed him at the end of last year and used his scholarship. I went to several practices last year and was worried about Leon's attitude. I also thought that he should have had Ty go ahead and get the surgery early last year and get a medical redshirt. It takes a good eight months to recover from that surgery. We would have had him all of this year and then again next year. I mentioned it to Keller early last year but he disagreed. I am seeing Keller as indecisive and a bit unorganized. Same deal with Nathan Bain. He waited too long to get the surgery.
BigJack85
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When you listen to his press conferences you get the same impression. The jury is still out for sure. Definitely a concerning sign.
Axe 'Em Jacks - Class of 85'
INiedrauer
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Staff
I'm not sure it's fair to say there was indecision on this. Obviously there were new developments that made this Gilmore move neccesary and that doesn't include attitude in practice. I don't blame the staff for wanting to give one of their best players every last chance to get it right. Unfortunately, chances just ran out.
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Isaac Niedrauer
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nacluth
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Yeah, and on the Charles front from last year. It would have been an extremely hard decision to say last year, "I'm going to shut down my best returning player for the year" - especially when everyone (including us) we're expecting/demanding a 5th conference title. Bringing back Charles during conference play almost got us that title too. We didn't have the team consistency to do it last year, but it sure sounds like good hindsight to say he should have been redshirted last year for the surgery. I just don't see any way a first year coach with this level of expectation seeing a player rehab decently makes the decision to shut down his supposed best player for a nebulous better shot the next year.

This doesn't even put into context that he essentially did the same for Bain and ended CJ's career at that point. It seems like Keller does have the balls to make big decisions, and sometimes has the balls to roll with some that don't pan out. I'm still waiting to see how it goes this year, but I'm not ready to say he's indecisive.
Ryan
Kinnaird Guitars
SFA Jack Fanatic
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nacluth said:

Yeah, and on the Charles front from last year. It would have been an extremely hard decision to say last year, "I'm going to shut down my best returning player for the year" - especially when everyone (including us) we're expecting/demanding a 5th conference title. Bringing back Charles during conference play almost got us that title too. We didn't have the team consistency to do it last year, but it sure sounds like good hindsight to say he should have been redshirted last year for the surgery. I just don't see any way a first year coach with this level of expectation seeing a player rehab decently makes the decision to shut down his supposed best player for a nebulous better shot the next year.

This doesn't even put into context that he essentially did the same for Bain and ended CJ's career at that point. It seems like Keller does have the balls to make big decisions, and sometimes has the balls to roll with some that don't pan out. I'm still waiting to see how it goes this year, but I'm not ready to say he's indecisive.
I agree. To make this situation a negative on Coach K simply would not be fair. We don't know what Gilmore did to deserve this, but it certainly wasn't from playing hopscotch in the WRJ parking lot.
Gazette1
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I didn't say that I have given up but, I heard constant complaints about how slow we were coming out of the gate in games last year. The intensity level was just not there offensively or defensively. By the time we figured it out it was just too late but I disagree with you about TY. He was not able to practice for so long and was obviously in much pain when he did play. When he was finally allowed to practice he was protected. It was a wasted year of play for him and a bad experience. Having only five players most of the summer was another big concern. I will with hold my judgement for another season but I hope to see more intensity from start to finish. He also was a scholarship player short last season. I felt like he should have pulled Deshaun's scholarship and signed someone else. I also feel like that he should have given up on Grujic already. I hope Grujic proves me wrong. I saw problems with Leon very early last year. They couldn't run plays with him in the lineup because he always went rogue. He would make a good play and then turn around and do something that would really hurt the team.He was out of control. He had great potential but it just wasn't working. there were some good players that we could have used that scholarship on. I hope that I will be giving Keller praise after this season. We will see, but I remember hearing lots of excuses last year. You never heard that out of Brad.
INiedrauer
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Staff
Gazette1 said:

I didn't say that I have given up but, I heard constant complaints about how slow we were coming out of the gate in games last year. The intensity level was just not there offensively or defensively. By the time we figured it out it was just too late but I disagree with you about TY. He was not able to practice for so long and was obviously in much pain when he did play. When he was finally allowed to practice he was protected. It was a wasted year of play for him and a bad experience. Having only five players most of the summer was another big concern. I will with hold my judgement for another season but I hope to see more intensity from start to finish. He also was a scholarship player short last season. I felt like he should have pulled Deshaun's scholarship and signed someone else. I also feel like that he should have given up on Grujic already. I hope Grujic proves me wrong.
I don't disagree with everything you said...but...intensity on defense was never a problem last year unless we just watched two completely different teams. They tried hard. They were just hopeless offensively and a lot of that was point guard play. Coaching can be blamed for that too, but effort really shouldn't be.

Ty was the only chance they had to win a conference title last year, in the mind of the coaching staff. Personally, I agree. It's no coincidence that SFA's comeback bid against A&M-CC in the conference tournament game was stunted when Ty fouled out. They felt like they had to have him (even at 60%) if they were going to get back to the tournament. They were clearly a better team with him and were maybe one of the 30 worst teams in the entire country during the non-conference without him.
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Isaac Niedrauer
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sfa17
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Yeah let's see how this season goes. How we look back at Keller's first year will be heavily dependent on this year. If we have a great season, then everyone will say that last season was the learning curve. I just want a consistent team em. That means we beat the teams that we are clearly better than and any big wins along the way is a plus.

Unlike last season, I will try to not overreact to the result of a single game." One game we are back , next game we suck." I will try to judge the team more based on a group of games

I hope that the Gilmore departure was a last resort kind of situation
nacluth
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Oh I'm completely ambivalent on the question of coaching when it comes to play calling and schemes at this point. I think we had a lot of talent that in some ways made us seem better than we were last year. We played some atrocious games. This year with arguably substantially better talent will reveal much.

I wasn't at the practices to see Ty limp through, but I just don't see a first year coach pull the one thing they think they can use to get a title, and essentially tank the first season, on an unknown future. I would have done the same probably. But here's to greater success this year.
Ryan
Kinnaird Guitars
INiedrauer
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Staff
Worth noting this: if what I've been told from the horses mouth is correct, SFA's offensive scheme will look nothing like it did a year ago. Totally redesigned with the new personnel.
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Isaac Niedrauer
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Gazette1
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I didn't see that defensive intensity that you are referring to. Our defensive stats were not that good. Our rebounding effort seems to have been lacking as well. I can't find any reason to sugar coat it. Ty just wasn't Ty. Our guards didn't put enough pressure on the ball as well..Losing to Northwestern State really hurt at home. Our offense at the end of that game was non-existent. I guess we can agree to disagree but we'll see what happens this season. Maybe Keller learned a few things himself. You know, he didn't have a very good record when he was a head J.C. coach. I think that he has always been mostly a recruiter rather than a coaching guru.
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