August 7, 2014

Down under helps Baylor stand tall

Melbourne, Australia is thousands of miles away from Waco, Texas. At this rate for Baylor's basketball program, it might as be right next to Waco.
But 7-0 center Joseph Acuil had a fondness from afar. Before he ever came to the United States, Acuil grew to like Baylor because of its style and how big men could float in Scott Drew's system.

Then reality came about. Acuil blew up at the Nike 100 in St. Louis. That caught Baylor's attention to where the Bears offered, he visited last week and committed on Thursday. Acuil picked Baylor over LSU. Acuil visited LSU on Tuesday.

"I think I surprised a lot of people with the way I played,'' Acuil said. "I just played basketball. But I've always liked Baylor because of their style. I've always liked the freedom they've had. It really was an easy decision.
"When they offered me after St. Louis, it was crazy because it was like everything was coming together.''

Neosho is the second addition to the 2015 class and will sign in November. He will have two years left at Baylor.

At 7-0, 215, Neosho represents the track record of long and lanky big men to come through the program. He can face the basket and probably play the power forward position. For Neosho in his first year, he started 14 of 32 games and averaged 11.8 points and 9.3 rebounds. He also blocked 88 other shots.

Plus, he has been reunited with fellow Melbourne resident Deng Deng who signed with Baylor in May.

"I knew him very well before we came over the United States,'' Acuil said. "It's going to be fun playing with him. Whatever the coach wants me to do, I'll do it. I can block shots, rebound and play with great intelligence. I'm ready to go to Baylor.''



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