SOUTH ORANGE – Seton Hall men’s basketball head coach Bobby Gonzalez announced today that Jesse Morgan (Philadelphia, Pa.) has signed a national letter of intent to attend the university and play basketball for the Pirates beginning in the 2010-11 season.
Morgan’s signing is the second for the Pirates during the fall period. Paterson Catholic small forward Fuquan Edwin signed on to play for Seton Hall on Nov. 13.
The 6-foot-5, 175-pound, shooting guard is highly regarded as an extremely versatile wing player who can shoot the ball well and score in bunches. He and Edwin will fill the roster spots left vacant by the graduation of seniors John Garcia and Eugene Harvey.
“We couldn’t be more thrilled to add Jesse Morgan to the program,” Gonzalez said. “He’s a versatile player that can play any one of the three guard positions. We feel he’s one of the most underrated players in the country and that he’s destined to be a future star at Seton Hall. His long-term potential is incredible, and in the short-term, he’ll provide quality insurance for Jeremy Hazell. He’s a big guard, who can play the point if necessary, and it’s good for us to add a kid from Philadelphia to our roster as well.”
Prior to a brief stint at South Kent Prep in Connecticut, Morgan was a First Team All-City selection at Olney High School in his native Philadelphia. He averaged 28 points per game, the third-best total among city-league players, and led the Trojans to a 19-3 record.
Women’s Basketball Signings
Seton Hall head women’s basketball coach Phyllis Mangina has signed two of the top high school student-athletes in the country to national letters of intent. Elaine Swaby (Paterson, N.J.) of John F. Kennedy High School and Ka-Deidre Simmons (Newark, N.J.) of Malcolm X. Shabazz High School are both ranked in the top 60 of the ESPNU HoopGurlz 100.
Swaby is rated 43rd overall and sixth among power forwards by ESPNU HoopGurlz. As a junior, she was named First Team All-League and All-County while bringing her career scoring and rebounding totals over 900 each. In her sophomore season, she garnered First Team All-League and Second Team All-County honors while helping Kennedy to the 2008 Passaic County championship and the Group 4 North Jersey championship.
An honorable mention All-American, the 6-1 Swaby is a member of the N.Y. Gauchos AAU program. She ranks 13th in her high school class academically. Simmons is ranked 53rd overall and 16th among point guards in the ESPNU HoopGurlz 100. The 5-8 playmaker averaged 12.9 points, 5.6 assists and 2.4 steals as a junior while earning First Team All-State honors in addition to Watchung Conference and Essex County Player of the Year awards.
Simmons led Shabazz to the NJSIAA Group 3 championship, picking up Most Valuable Player recognition for her efforts. She earned numerous MVP awards throughout the year at various tournaments. Heading into this season, Shabazz is ranked fifth in the country by HoopGurlz.
The Pirates have also inked Tiffani Blackman (Toledo, Ohio) of Toledo Central Catholic, the 80th ranked shooting guard in the class of 2010 by ESPNU HoopGurlz. The 5-11 Blackman averaged six points and six rebounds in a shortened junior season after transferring from Bowsher High School.
As a sophomore at Bowsher, she posted 12 points and 12 rebounds per game, up from eight points and 10 rebounds as a freshman. Blackman was a Second Team All-City and All-District player as a freshman and sophomore, as well as Second Team All-City and Special Team All-District as a junior. She is also a standout academically.
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