Kent State men's basketball head coach Rob Senderoff announced the signing of Marquiez Lawrence to a National Letter of Intent on Wednesday. A 6'8", 190-pound forward, Lawrence will join the Golden Flashes' program out of Marion-Franklin High School.
"Marquiez is a really athletic player and a great defender," said Senderoff. "His defense is probably ahead of his offense at this time, but we believe he will continue to develop his skills because of his work ethic. He plays really hard and competes really hard. He does a lot of the dirty work that helps a team and also brings a lot of energy when he is on the floor. He brings the ability to do a lot of different things that will help us win games."
This past season, Lawrence led the Red Devils to their first district championship since 1993. He averaged 12 points and eight rebounds during his final prep season under head coach Scott Williams.
"In the late signing period, we wanted to add frontcourt depth, knowing that we will be graduating three big guys after the upcoming season," Senderoff said. "Marquiez is a kid that we followed all year and last summer and are very happy that he was still available to sign at this point."
Lawrence spent time playing for both the King James Shooting Stars and Ohio Varsity AAU programs. As a senior, Lawrence garnered All-City League South Division and honorable mention All-Central District accolades.
"We are really happy about signing him today," said Senderoff. "Coach Williams did a great job of helping Marquiez's development so that he is ready to come in and compete at the college level."
Lawrence becomes the third member of the Golden Flashes' incoming class, joining spring signees Derek Jackson (junior, G) and Devin Carter (sophomore, G/F). Sophomore guard K.K. Simmons, a transfer from UNC-Wilmington, also becomes eligible after sitting out 2012-13 season due to NCAA transfer rules.
2013-14 Kent State Newcomers/Transfers
K.K. Simmons* So. G 6'4" 190 Marietta, Ga. / Wheeler H.S. (UNC-Wilmington)
Derek Jackson Jr. G 6'2" 171 Cleveland / Benedictine H.S. (Central Michigan)
Devin Carter So. G/F 6'4" 175 Champaign, Ill. / Centennial H.S. (Lake Land College)
Marquiez Lawrence Fr. F 6'8" 190 Columbus, Ohio / Marion-Franklin H.S.