SAGU grabs Red Oak hoopster
Coach Bostwick signs 6'8 forward
Luke Eubanks is a promising dual threat
WAXAHACHIE, Texas -- The search for big men in basketball is always at a premium, especially when they can shoot.
Southwestern Assemblies of God University signed a local talent in Luke Eubanks, a 6-foot-8 forward from Red Oak, Texas. He is known for latching onto rebounds as well as his knack for knocking down the three-ball.
"Luke had a very good senior season,” quipped SAGU Head Coach Donnie Bostwick. “He grew late and has an incredible upside. We are thrilled and excited about his future in our program."
Eubanks played at Red Oak High School, just north of Waxahachie, a Class 4A school who competes in one of the state’s toughest districts. The maroon-clad Hawks have produced a 56-31 overall record over the past three seasons, including 25-15 in district action. (see standings below from past two years)
The Hawks, under veteran Head Coach Stephen Preston Foster, went 17-10 overall and finished fourth in Region II / District 15 last winter.
Eubanks (YEW-banks) scored 9.1 points per game and nearly as many rebounds (8.1). Coupled with his ability to swat shots like the Hulk did the Chitauri in the Avengers (totaling 70 blocked shots), Eubanks was a difference maker for the Hawks.
He also collected 2.3 steals and 1.3 assists per contest.
“Luke is a great young man,” praised Coach Foster. “He is a hard worker with a bright future ahead of him. He is just now starting to realize some of his potential.”
With a big surge in height during his junior season, the 'long' Eubanks has latent capabilities, according to Coach Bostwick. “He’s still developing and could become a real impact player for us.”
His prep coach concurs.
“He has gone through a tremendous growth spurt over the last couple of years,” Foster pointed out. “He’s also played through a lot of growing pains this year.”
An added element that makes Eubanks a great fit for Bostwick’s new system at SAGU is his shooting skills.
“He has good range on his shot, especially from three-point range,” says Foster. “Luke has a very soft touch. He plays best away from the basket, facing up because he has a good shot. He can also handle the ball well.” He was a guard who ran the floor easily before sprouting.
“Inside, he is a natural at blocking shots and keeping the ball alive on offense,” Foster added.
|The 2012 SAGU Recruiting Class Now Includes:|
|Emmanuel Adoyi, 6'5 forward (Parkview HS, Little Rock, AR)|
|Caleb Gentry, 6'0 combo guard (Oklahoma Wesleyan University / Hondo HS, Hondo, TX)|
|Luke Eubanks, 6'8 forward (Red Oak HS, Red Oak, TX)|
Additional signings are expected over the next two weeks.
About SAGU Basketball
A year after going *10-22, SAGU went 27-11 in the first season under Bostwick. It is believed to be the largest turnaround in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).
The team finished fourth in the 15-member Red River Athletic Conference. During post-season play the Lions finished third in the nation in the National Christian College Athletic Association tournament in Indiana.
The Lions were #3 in the nation in three-pointers made per game at 9.8, which were enabled by their success at board-crashing. Pulling down 15.6 rebounds per game was the 6th best in the NAIA.
Without a line-up blessed with big men, the Lions largest area of improvement came on defense. They reduced scoring by opponents from 86.6 in 2011 to 71.9 in 2012, moving up from #118 to #62 in a field of 120 Division I teams.
Two significant areas the squad upgraded dealt with turnovers.
The team made 16.9 turnovers per game in 2012, compared to 19.4 the previous campaign. Defensively, the Lions forced 20.3 after squeezing opponents into 16.9 miscues in 2011.
The +3.4 ratio this past season ranked #12 nationally. A year earlier their -2.4 ratio was #96 in the NAIA.
The translated progress of +5 in one season, coupled with the added possessions gained by offensive rebounds often spelled victory rather than defeat.
The 27 wins not only equaled the most ever in school history, the team accomplished their first winning record since joining the NAIA over ten years ago.
The SAGU Sports Network broadcasts all home basketball games (starting in January) in HD. Fans can access the livestream, likely the finest in the NAIA, as well as a separate digital play-by-play called LiveStats, both at no expense.
Texas Class 4A / Region II / District 15 Standings
Records according to Max Preps.