College notes: MSU hoops has two Gatorade POYs, including Detroit star; UM has one

Tony Paul
The Detroit News
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Michigan State men's basketball has claimed two Gatorade national players of the year as part of its 2021 recruiting class, and Michigan has one.

The Gatorade boys basketball player of the year for the state of Michigan is Pierre Brooks II, a wing at Frederick Douglass Academy in Detroit, it was announced Friday. Brooks has committed to Michigan State, as has Max Christie, a guard who is the Gatorade player of the year for the state of Illinois.

Pierre Brooks II of Detroit Douglass was named Michigan Mr. Basketball.

Forward Caleb Houston, a Michigan commitment, was named the player of the year for the state of Florida.

Brooks, a 6-foot-6, 218-pounder, averaged 33.1 points, 10.7 rebounds, 9.2 steals, 4.5 assists and 1.4 blocks for Douglass, leading his team to a state championship. He was named Michigan's Mr. Basketball, and was first-team all-city all four years. For his career, he scored 1,973 points.

Brooks is the headliner of Michigan State's recruiting class, which is ranked 10th in the nation by 247Sports.

Also in that class is 6-7, 190-pound Christie, who this past season averaged 24 points, 10.1 rebounds, 3.9 rebounds, 3.1 steals and 2.0 blocks for Rolling Meadows High in Illinois. He finished his high-school career with 2,132 points.

Michigan's class, meanwhile, is ranked No. 1 by 247Sports, led by Houston of Montverde Academy. At 6-8, 210 pounds, he averaged 13.2 points, 4.6 rebounds, 1.7 assists and 1.2 steals in leading his team to a No. 1 national ranking and the national championships. Like Christie, he also was named a McDonald's All-American.

The Gatorade awards are presented annually, and factor in athletic accomplishments as well as academics and extracurriculars.

This & that

►Some moving and shaking on the Central Michigan women's basketball staff. Michele Savage, the former head coach at Davidson, has joined Heather Oesterle's staff as an assistant, replacing legendary coach Gail Goestenkors, who spent a season in Mt. Pleasant before taking a job with Kentucky.

Also joining the staff is Central Michigan playing legend Presley Hudson, who is director of player personnel. She spent last season on staff at rival Western Michigan.

►Eastern Michigan's men's basketball roster is coming together under new coach Stan Heath, who has signed Delta College transfer and Grand Blanc native Kevin-David Rice (guard; 25.3 points per game), Siena College transfer and Detroit native Colin Golson Jr. (forward; 5.2 points, 3.1 rebounds) and Macedonia freshman point guard Luka Savikjevikj. Heath also has his coaching staff in place, including EMU alum Bob Simon, Shawn Trice and Drew Denisco, who had been Michigan State's video coordinator.

►Likewise, Central Michigan men's basketball coach has its coaching staff under new head coach Tony Barbee, including Marlon Williamson, a Detroit Cass Tech alum who has worked for years with the Detroit-base Family AAU team. Also joining the staff: Shane Heirman and Chris McMillian.

►Donnie Marsh, a long-time confidant of Detroit Mercy head men's basketball coach Mike Davis, has joined the Titans coaching staff. He replaces Mark Montgomery, who joined the staff in the middle of last season after being fired by Northern Illinois.

►Oakland women's basketball added guard Aaliyah McQueen, a transfer from Illinois and Flint native. She averaged 9.6 minutes last season, scoring a career-high eight points against Michigan State.

►Nebraska's Spencer Schwellenbach, of Saginaw, was named Big Ten baseball player of the year. A reliever/shortstop, he had eight saves and 35 RBIs.

►Former NFL defensive lineman Ian Scott has been named the defensive line coach at Central Michigan.

►Western Michigan men's basketball signed guard Cameron Kimble from Las Vegas.

►The Mid-American Conference will be back at Ford Field on July 20 for football media days, after going virtual in 2020.

►Grand Valley State won the Division II men's outdoor track and field national championship, while the school's women's team finished runner-up.

►Coming off its first NCAA Tournament appearance in 25 years, Lake Superior State signed head coach Damon Whitten to a six-year extension through 2027-28.

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Twitter: @tonypaul1984

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