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Drew Ellis covers Oakland University basketball for The Oakland Press. His news and notes keep you up to date with Golden Grizzlies men's basketball.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

OU lands another guard for 2011-12, AA Huron's Dante Williams



Oakland got its second verbal commitment for 2011-12, as Ann Arbor Huron guard Dante Williams has chosen the Golden Grizzlies over Duquesne.
The Grizzlies got the word from Hartland guard Matt Poches late last season.
Williams, a capable defender at nearly every position on the floor, according to his coach, Waleed Samaha, led the River Rats to the Class A state finals last season.
Samaha said the Grizzlies showed strong interest in Williams, whose stock began to rise later in his career.
“At 6-6, he can play on the wing, he just gives you so many options defensively. He can guard four of the five positions. He's really athletic. He gets off his feet really well. He's quick and smart. He's a versatile athlete. He's steadily improving, he's just cracking the iceburg, so to speak, in terms of his ability. He has tremendous upside," Samaha said.
Williams had interest from schools in the Big East, Mid-American Conference, Atlantic 10 and PAC 10, but he narrowed his choices to the final two early in the recruiting process.
“He took the option to play at home. His family can get to the games. That was important to him and his family," Samaha said. Coach Greg Kampe's aggressive nature toward scheduling Oakland's non-conference season against some of the nation's top-tier programs paid dividends last season, as the Golden Grizzlies routed the Summit League on their way to the NCAA tournament. It's also proving positive on the recruiting trail.
“They play a very aggressive style and they schedule aggressively," Samaha said. "They'll compete against anyone, anywhere, anytime. That's one of the things that drew Dante's interest more than anything. They compete against some of the best teams in the country and they have a chance to go to the NCAA tournament every year."
The big guard will have to add some weight to his 170-pound frame. Samaha says Williams should be around 190 pounds when he enters Oakland, where he expects his guard to be ready to play immediately.
For now, Williams and Huron have high expectations to meet on the high school hardwood this winter, a reputation they earned last season.
“We've been knocking on the door for years. We've won our share of districts and played in regionals. We've been knocked out by some very good teams," Samaha said.

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