October 25, 2010
As the November 10th beginning of the Early Signing period draws near, the Rice Owls look to be poised to sign a pair of Guards that could really boost their backcourt.
Point Guard Dylan Ennis, 6-2 175 pounds of Chicago Lake Forest Academy; and Combo Guard Julian DeBose, 6-4 190 pounds of Beltsville St. John's High School have both given Coach Ben Braun recent commits.
Ennis was originally committed to Akron, but reopened his recruitment last summer. He's from Brampton, Ontario, (the same hometown as Rice football player Tolu Akinwumi.)
Ennis will have the opportunity to step right in and run the Offense for Rice. The past two seasons Connor Frizzelle and Tamir Jackson have led the Owls at the point, and while both have done the job respectably each is better suited to play the #2 Guard spot. The Owls finally have numbers at the Point with the addition of Ennis.
He's a versatile playmaking point guard. He's got above average speed and excellent handle. He's more than capable of breaking down defenders. Dylan can create his own shot off the dribble, but can also dish with either hand. He's also got three-point range. Ennis has instinctive leadership abilities and is an emerging defender.
We spoke to Dylan over the weekend to capture his thoughts on the Rice Owl program and his future in Houston.
"I'm really excited to be a Rice Owl. I know my game can excel playing under Coach Braun. I expect Rice to surprise people in the C-USA this year, and when I'm there we will surprise the entire NCAA!"
The chance for early minutes definitely weighed into Dylan's decision.
"Yea that was big factor. I want to be an impact player all 4 years - and I strongly believe the only way a player can get better is playing, not just watching."
The 6-2 Ennis sports a wing-span of a player 6-7. Though he's got excellent floor vision with the ball, he can play above the rim too. Ennis can do both windmill and 360 dunks. He chose the Owls over Akron, College of Charleston, George Mason, Santa Clara, and TCU.
With DeBose Rice gets a bigger Guard that can both penetrate and shoot.
Julian has put on almost 25 pounds since his sophomore year and isn't done growing yet. He's got great hands and moves well without the ball to get into scoring position.
The well-rounded DeBose described his skill set for us today in better detail.
"My strengths as a player are getting to the rim and finishing strong. I also think I see the floor well and can find the open teammate. My best move is my in-and-out crossover along with my pull up jumper. I've been working on extending my range though."
Julian is very hard worker and has been polishing all his skills in anticipation of playing in the very competitive C-USA. He's an above-average defender with long arms and great anticipation. Though DeBose is quite talented, he's what many college recruiters consider a full-effort player.
He also shared his thoughts on choosing Rice over the likes of Harvard, Mount St. Mary's, Penn, Sienna, Virginia, Virginia Commonwealth, and Vermont.
"I really enjoyed my visit to Rice.They showed me a lot about where the program is headed. I was accepted by the team (on his visit) and that meant a lot. In the end I thought about the great opportunity to be successful in school and on the court, and also with the opportunities after college with a degree from Rice. I wanted to be part of a team on the rise and I see that with Coach Braun's program at Rice."
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