basketball Edit

Wake Forest lands impact forward Jaylen Hoard

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Jaylen Hoard (Jon Lopez/Nike @NikeEYB)

A major focus for Danny Manning and his staff at Wake Forest for the 2018 class has been landing frontcourt difference makers. They landed their first one on Saturday with the addition of Jaylen Hoard.

Born and raised in France, the 6-foot-8 forward moved to North Carolina as a junior and announced on Saturday that he'll play his college ball for Manning at Wake. An unofficial visit on Thursday sealed the deal after he got more time with Manning and assistant coach Randolph Childress.

"Me and my family had talked about it and I told them I felt like I was ready to make a decision before my season because I wanted to focus on school," Hoard told Rivals.com. "I kind of had the idea that I wanted to go to Wake Forest and I just wanted my dad to see campus. once we got over there and saw they had everything in place I was ready to make my decision

"I like how coach Manning has turned the program around since he's been at Wake Forest. I liked the success he had recently with John Collins and the players he had at Kansas that went on to become pros. I felt like he would be the best to prepare and teach me.

Hoard is a big time athlete and smooth operator who fits the role of the hybrid combo forward that is so coveted in today's game.

He runs the floor, can play above the rim in traffic and is very dangerous attacking other forwards off the dribble. He's also an excellent passer and does a very nice job of cleaning the glass and defending multiple positions.

"They told me i could come in and play multiple positions. I'm versatile and I can play the three or the four and I'm a good basketball player. If I do what I'm supposed to do and come in ready I can make an instant

Hoard is the highest ranked player to commit to Manning and his staff at Wake Forest and second player to make an early call for them in 2018. He joins three-star combo guard Sharone Wright Jr. Other major targets for the Deacons include five-star point guard Ayo Dosunmu and four-star prospects Nate Laszewski and Michael DeVoe among others.

"I'm going to do what I can to help them out on the recruiting front. I am fairly close with Ayo (Dosunmu), I played on the same team at the Nike Basketball Academy and that was a good experience."