Gillette, Wyo.--The Gillette College Pronghorns mens basketball team will have a first in team history next season- two brothers playing together.
Renard Suggs made that possible by becoming the latest recruit to sign with Gillette College. His brother Rickey, who graduated from high school a year earlier, red shirted with the Pronghorns last season, joining the squad after the winter break. Both, who are from Woodbury, Minn., will be freshmen this upcoming season.
Renard averaged 20 points and 4.5 rebounds a game. He scored over 1,000 points in his prep career and was named on all-state and all-conference teams, in addition to numerous other awards. He played with his brother during the younger Suggs' 9th, 10th and 11th grade seasons in high school, but have always been playing since kindergarten. The brothers' father was also successful in his playing days and coached them in their early years.
In a media conference call with Renard, he sounded confident, but was not afraid to admit areas that he would like to improve on while playing for the Pronghorns.
“My defense, it can improve a lot. I feel it's come a long way, but I can always get better in that”
When asked what he will be bringing to the table, Renard stated “[My] ability to score right away, ability to talk, bring confidence on the floor with my team mates and just always play hard.”
Renard and Rickey's mother, Starr, was very excited about her boys playing together at the college level.
““I'm really excited and now we can see both of them play, instead of going different places and watching them,” Mrs. Suggs said on the conference call in Minnesota. There is also some family in Arizona that may make the trek to a couple games as well.
Renard is looking forward to a change in scenery.
“Actually, I'm pretty excited of getting away from home. I've been here a long time- just ready to see the world now.”
Head Coach Shawn Neary is looking forward to have Renard on the team.
“He's a good player. I mean, 20 points a game, over 1,000 points for his career. He shoots it, he drives it- he's really athletic. We've never really signed a guard like him before.
So what about Renard's brother, Rickey?
Neary says that they are different players with different body types and play different positions. Rickey will be a threat around the perimeter. Neary labeled him as an “athletic wing” that is great at getting rebounds.
Another player that joined the Pronghorns after the winter break last season was Ben Glover out of Minneapolis, Minn. Neary mentioned that Glover is a talented point guard that can score and pass on offense. Defensively, he has good instincts.
So far this off season, the Pronghorns have six players that are signed for the 2013-14 campaign. In addition to the Suggs brothers and Glover, Neary brought on Dylan Haddix out of the college's backyard. Haddix is from Campbell County High School in Gillette. The two returning starters from last year are Dwight Anderson and Jayden Walsh.