East Lansing — The wait has ended for the Rocket to land at Michigan State.
Mark “Rocket” Watts, the first commitment to Tom Izzo’s 2019 class, signed his national letter of intent on Wednesday, the first day of the spring signing period. The four-star Detroit native posted the news on his Twitter and Instagram accounts.
The 6-foot-3 shooting guard who played his senior season at Spire Academy in Geneva, Ohio, originally committed to Michigan State in September but did not sign during the early period in mid-November. That led some to believe Watts was reconsidering his commitment; however, he maintained throughout his final high school season that he intended to become a Spartan.
“He’s had an incredible year playing at his prep school this year, but he’s a guy who gives us a 6-3, solid, strong, very athletic body that can play multiple positions, some one, some two, some three and we think he’s got a chance defensively to be very good,” Izzo said in a statement. “He has had great coaching with Craig Covington at Old Redford and Jermaine Jackson, who played at this level and has played in the NBA.
“We think he serves us because his strength, his athleticism, his size and his shooting ability are a rare combination that few people have. He’s a very competitive kid, a tough kid, an athletic kid who can shoot it from long, long range. He’s a very exciting sign for us this year.”
Ranked the No. 32 player overall in the nation by 247Sports.com and the No. 5 combo guard, Watts was a Detroit News Class B all-state selection as a junior at Old Redford Academy before spending his senior season at Spire. His season was highlighted by a 64-point outburst that included 15 3-pointers in a win over St. Edward (Ohio).
As a junior at Old Redford, Watts averaged 26.8 points, six assists, 5.5 rebounds and 2.4 steals per game in leading his team to the regional championship game
Watts joins 6-7 forward Malik Hall, who signed in November. Also in the class is 6-8 forward Julius Marble, who is expected to sign sometime next week to complete the three-player class.