Nov. 13, 2013
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- Purdue head coach Matt Painter and his staff announced that three prospects have signed National Letters of Intent and will begin competing for the Boilermakers in the 2014-15 season.
Ohio natives Dakota Mathias and Vince Edwards will join forces with Massachusetts resident Jacquil Taylor to comprise a class that fills the needs of the Purdue basketball program.
"It's a class that can really help us with our skill level and decision making. I like all three guys and their versatility and their ability to play different positions and fit into our system, especially when it comes to our motion offense," Painter said. "All three of these guys have a lot of the same characteristics in that they are hard-working guys, understand basketball, come from great families and I think when you have those characteristics, you are really going to fit in here at Purdue."
"I think whether you sign in-state or out-of-state guys, everything gets cyclical. You always try to recruit your backyard and neighboring states, but when you have to branch out, it means there is a need there," Painter added. "Dakota and Vince are both within a three-hour drive of Purdue and Jacquil fits our need. He really fits there in terms of how we play. All three of the guys have the makeup of what we need for success."
Purdue's 2013 Signing Class
Vince Edwards - F | 6-7 | 210 | Middletown, Ohio | Middletown High School
Dakota Mathias - G | 6-5 | 190 | Elida, Ohio | Elida High School
Jacquil Taylor - F | 6-9 | 215 | Cambridge, Mass. | Beaver Country Day School
Painter on Edwards: "We've cornered Vince for a long time and was a priority for us from day one after we saw him two years ago before his sophomore year. Vince fits our system and motion offense as a face-up four and I look at him as a big guard. His ability to rebound and cause mismatches as a face-up four will be his niche. He will be able to handle the basketball and push the basketball himself, very similar to what Robbie Hummel did for us. His ability to triple-threat, shoot threes, drive the basketball and be able to pitch and then get to the hole from that spot is really going to give us an advantage. He is one of the best rebounders that we have recruited. He really has a knack for knowing where the ball is and picking up the flight of the ball and chasing it down. We are very fortunate to get him and he will be a very productive player for us."
- Ranked as 80th-best prospect, the No. 2-ranked prospect in Ohio and a four-star recruit in America by ESPN.com; ranked as the 122nd-top prospect by Rivals.com
- Listed as a three-star prospect by Rivals and Scout
- Named first-team All-Cincinnati Enquirer selection as a junior after averaging 21.0 points, 12.3 rebounds and 4.1 assists per game
- Also named special mention All-State and first-team All-District
- Averaged 14.5 points, 11.7 rebounds and 1.3 blocks per game as a sophomore
- Greater Miami Conference (GMC) Co-Player of the Year as a junior
- Led team to the GMC Championship and district title a year ago as well as regional runners-up in 2012 and 2013
- Very athletic player with a wide range of skills on the perimeter and in the paint
- Held offers from Michigan, West Virginia, Vanderbilt and Xavier among others
- Clicked with the academic staff at Purdue and plans to study kinesiology
- Son of former player Bill Edwards, who holds the single-game (45), season (757) and career (2,303 points from 1989-93) scoring records at Wright State
- Won the National Character Award as voted on by the YMCA
- Will be coached his senior year by Mark Baker. Was coached previously by Josh Andrews, who left to become the head coach at Taylor University.
Painter of Mathias: "Dakota is a very intelligent basketball player that can dribble, pass and shoot, and simply understands the game very well. Probably the one thing that really jumps out to me after watching him is how selfless of a player he is. Normally, when you have guys that are that way, they don't have a high skill level. He has a very high skill level. He just knows what is going on at all times and has a great presence on the court. We are very excited to get him and feel he is a guy that can play immediately for us. He has so much substance and understanding of how to play the game the right way."
- Ranked 141st nationally and a three-star recruit by Rivals.com
- Ranked as a three-star recruit according to Scout.com
- As a junior, Mathias averaged 25.3 points, 9.5 rebounds and 6.4 assists while shooting 62 percent from the field and making 63-of-169 three-point attempts
- Was selected to play on the Ohio Rising All-Stars Team, was the Lima News 2013 Dream Team Player of the Year and an Associated Press Division II All-Ohio First Team honoree
- Also honored as the Associated Press District Co-Player of the Year and the District 8 and Western Buckeye League (WBL) Player of the Year
- Surpassed 1,000 career points on Jan. 25, 2013 against Kenton High School
- As a sophomore, Mathias averaged 13.1 points, 4.4 rebounds and 4.4 assists per game while making 39-of-114 three-point attempts and 88 percent of his free throw attempts
- Named first-team All-WBL, second-team All-District 8 and third team Associated Press All-District as well as to the Lima News Dream Team in 2012
- Started as a freshman where he averaged 10.3 points, 5.4 rebounds and 4.0 assists and was named honorable mention All-WBL
- Led team to 2012 and 2013 WBL Championships as well as an Ohio State Runner-Up finish
- Has made 138 career three-pointers during his time at Elida High School
- Has good size for a shooting guard
- Very versatile player with a high basketball IQ
- Also an outstanding student as he is a member of the National Honor Society, was the PSI Academic Student of the Year, the Lima News Scholar-Athlete of the Year and an Ohio Basketball Coaches Association Silver Scholar-Athlete
- Is good friends with fellow recruit Vince Edwards
- Chose Purdue because of the academic reputation and the "at home" feeling Purdue provides
- Coached by Denny Thompson and his high school teammate, Reggie McAdams, currently plays at Akron
Painter on Taylor: "Jacquil is a guy that we started recruiting at the end of the process and his story is something you were always doing before AAU Basketball came into play. Some kids wouldn't play AAU and get on the circuit and would be under the radar. He was different in that he was under the radar because of his injury. He had a lot of people on him before his injury and in this business, when you get out of sight, you get out of mind. Our assistant, Jack Owens, did a great job of finding him and doing background on him and we feel we got a diamond in the rough. He reminds me of former Purdue player Gary McQuay. He is left handed, he is long and active and can step out and shoot the basketball. He has a chance, especially as he physically matures, to be a really good player. We feel very fortunate to get someone like him. He is a good kid who comes from a great family and he is really a hard worker. He has a skill level that can cause some matchup problems. He is just another guy that really fits our system."
- Three-star recruit according to ESPN.com and ranked as the No. 6 prospect in the state of Massachusetts
- Three-star recruit according to Rivals
- Named eighth-best player in New England by the New England Recruiting Report
- Earned first-team All-NEPSAC Class B accolades as a sophomore, leading Beaver Country Day to an undefeated regular season and the NEPSAC Class B title, typically one of the toughest conferences in America
- Averaged 15.1 points, 8.3 rebounds and 3.2 blocks a game as a sophomore, being named the EIL Co-MVP. Was also named to the Boston Globe All-Scholastics Team
- Was mentioned as one of the top five players in New England before his injury
- Most-highly touted big man to come out of Cambridge, Mass., since New York Knicks Hall of Famer Patrick Ewing
- Very underrated prospect with tremendous upside as a foot injury caused him to miss most of his junior year as well as the summer AAU circuit
- Brother, Maurice, plays basketball at North Carolina A&T.
- Chose Purdue over offers from Providence, Saint Joseph's and North Carolina A&T and was receiving interest from Maryland, Pittsburgh, Boston College and others before his injury
- Coached by Juan Figueroa