The Wolfpacker

January 2018

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

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Page 93 of 107

94 ■ THE WOLFPACKER BY JACEY ZEMBAL R ranks NC State signee Saddiq Bey as the No. 102 overall player in the country in the class of 2018, due in part to his versatile inside-outside game. The Washington (D.C.) Sidwell Friends small forward also had a flair for keeping people guessing in his recruitment this past fall. The 6-7, 200-pounder had unofficially vis- ited NCSU June 30 and then took his official visit Oct. 5-7, nearly a month before he made his decision. His relationship with NC State head coach Kevin Keatts and assistant coach A.W. Ham- ilton continued to develop, and he eventually selected NC State over Xavier, Pittsburgh, Miami and others Nov. 2. "I was going through the process and just wanted to see where I could see myself," Bey said. "I just loved the energy Coach Keatts and the staff had, and the plans they had for me. I liked how they play. "They checked the all the boxes, and I felt it in my gut that it was the best fit. I got the full support [of his mom and step-father]. They are on board." The Wolfpack coaches first noticed Bey during the April evaluation period, while he was playing for D.C. Premier in the Under Armour Association. recruiting analyst Dan McDonald was at some of those same events and came away impressed. "I love him," Mc- Donald said. "He's a great athlete and a shot-maker. He is a good ball handler and creates for others. He is a really good de- fender with even more potential at that end. "He just strikes me as the kind of kid you want in your program for four years. He seems like a low-maintenance kid with a low-maintenance game." NC State expects Bey to play small for- ward, but his inside-outside game could lend him to play shooting guard and perhaps small-ball power forward. "Saddiq is an extremely talented player, who fits our system perfectly with his ability to play and guard multiple positions," Keatts said. "Saddiq's freshman year at Sidwell Friends School he was a 6-1 point guard and has since grown to 6-7, while still having those same guard skills." recruiting analyst Corey Evans also likes Bey's potential on the defensive end. "It all starts and ends with his versatility," Evans said. "He can do so many things on both sides of the floor. Defensively is where his calling card might be. He can defend the two, three and small-ball four." Bey said Fayetteville (N.C.) Northwood Temple Academy senior center commit Im- manuel Bates ('s No. 111 overall player in the country) had been working on him. Bates and his prep teammate Ian Steere (No. 105 overall prospect in the nation) were the first two NC State commits in the 2018 class, and St. Louis Chaminade Prep senior forward Jericole Hellems (No. 100) joined the pair Oct. 20. ranks all four players between No. 100 and No. 111 in the class of 2018, and junior college power forward transfer Derek Funderburk of Northwest Florida State College was previously ranked No. 77 in the class of 2016. Bey rose from a relative unknown to an ACC-level prospect with 18 scholarship of- fers. He credits a change in his mental ap- proach for the dramatic improvement. Bey's performance during the spring helped make him a hot commodity and moved him into the national rankings. He averaged 12.9 points and 5.6 rebounds over 16 games in the Under Armour Association, and he shot 50.0 percent from the field and an impressive 44.8 percent on three-pointers. As a junior at Sidwell Friends, Bey aver- aged 14.2 points per game, helped lead his team to a conference title and was named honorable mention All-Met by The Wash- ington Post. Bey averaged 4.0 points and 2.7 re- bounds per game and shot 33.3 percent from the field (12 of 36) at the NBPA Camp June 14-17 at the Univer- sity of Virginia. UNC Wilmington junior shooting guard C.J. Bryce and Utah sophomore small for- ward Devon Daniels are redshirting this season as transfers and will join the four freshmen and Funderburk, who arrives as a redshirt sophomore, in the fall of 2018. The seven players will lay the foundation of future Wolfpack teams. ■ VERSATILE PERFORMER Signee Saddiq Bey Can Be Used All Over The Court By The Wolfpack ■ BASKETBALL RECRUITING "Saddiq is an extremely talented player, who fits our system perfectly with his ability to play and guard multiple positions." ■ Head coach Kevin Keatts Bey averaged 14.2 points per game as a junior and was named honorable mention All-Met by The Washington Post. PHOTO BY RON BAILEY/SPECIAL TO THE WOLFPACKER

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