PREVIEW: WKU Fall Signing Period

PREVIEW: WKU Fall Signing Period

Western Kentucky could sign up to three recruits during the Nov. 13-20 fall signing period. Read our exclusive breakdown and prediction on WKU's full signing class inside.

The NCAA's fall signing period for senior high school basketball prospects begins on Nov. 13 and ends on Nov. 20.

Up to three recruits could ink National Letters of Intent (NLI's) to Western Kentucky during the signing period, creating a binding financial aid agreement between them and WKU.

Perry Country Central's Justin Johnson and ELEV|8 Prep Academy's Derrick Clayton are already verbally committed to the Toppers, plus preferred walk-on Rob Marberry--but the third and final scholarship spot is still to be determined.

Here's what WKU fans need to know as the start of the signing period approaches.


Justin Johnson

HT: 6-foot-7. / WT: 235

Projected position: Power forward

Rated as a three-star prospect, Johnson averaged 11.6 points and 6.2 rebounds per game in the elite Nike Peach Jam tournament over the summer, shooting 59 percent from the field for the Kentucky Travelers.

On the EYBL tour over the summer AAU circuit, Johnson helped lead the Travelers' to wins over forward Stanley Johnson and the Oakland Soldiers (79-76), forward Abdul-Malik Abu and Expressions Elite (68-59), and several other major victories.

In a 72-61 win over a Mac Irvin Fire squad with a starting frontcourt of Jahlil Okafor and Cliff Alexander, Johnson played 25 minutes, contributing 10 points, 6 rebounds, and a blocked shot.

Scout national analyst Evan Daniels has seen Johnson play a handful of times.

"Johnson is a hard playing power forward that can help WKU on the interior," Daniels said. "Although he's undersized, he's energetic, plays with toughness, and is a high level rebounder.

"Offensively, Johnson has some skill. He scores it well through contact and is always a threat for put backs. On top of that, he's capable of making mid-range jump shots as well."

The Perry County Central star will sign his NLI in a ceremony at his high school on Wednesday at 10 a.m. ET.

WKUInsider.com will be on-site at the ceremony to video the announcement, and footage will be posted later that evening for site subscribers.


Derrick Clayton

HT: 6-foot-5. / WT: 180

Projected position: Shooting guard/small forward.

A largely under-the-radar recruit, Clayton transferred to ELEV|8 Prep Academy from Castro Valley in California.

Stats aren't available for Clayton from his junior season, but Scout analyst Rob Harrington watched the senior perform at the NTF Workout, an annual recruiting event held in Florida.

"Clayton is a great pickup for WKU," Harrington said. "I loved his shooting stroke at the NTF Workout, and think he will step right in and hit shots. He strikes me as the kind of guy who was under recruited due to his crosscountry transfer.

"I think he's a top 200-type guy nationally. Maybe top 150 if we went that far."

While Clayton is clearly talented, Scout analysts haven't observed him enough to determine a rating, thus his NR (not rated) on his profile.

But as a projected top 200 recruit, he'll be a three-star at the lowest, once Scout has more opportunities to see him play.

The wing prospect didn't return a text message from WKUInsider on Sunday night, but said when he committed on Oct. 27 that he plans to sign during the fall period.


Avery Patterson

HT: 6-foot-1. / WT: 175

Projected position: Point guard.

After visiting WKU over the Nov. 2 weekend, this three-star point guard was supposed to take an official visit to Tulane over the Nov. 9 weekend before making a commitment decision.

But after Tulane received a commitment from another point guard, Keith Pinckney, the trip to see the Green Wave's program up-close was cancelled.

Patterson told WKUInsider on Sunday night that he doesn't have an exact time set for his announcement yet, but said his decision will be made public in a ceremony at his high school on Wednesday, Nov. 13 (UPDATE: WKUInsider spoke with Patterson on Nov. 11, who said he moved his decision announcement to Thursday, Nov. 14.)

If the Wheeler HS standout commits to the Toppers, he should be the third and final piece in WKU's 2013 fall signing class.

During his college recruitment, Patterson held offers from several major programs, including Kansas State, Butler, Boston College, Tulane, Central Florida and more.

"My style of play is very aggressive, but very relaxed at the same time," Patterson said in a Nov. 2 interview with WKUInsider. "I love winning, I'll do anything to win.

"I think my strengths are shooting and pushing the ball up the court, running the team on the court the way the coach wants. My weakness, I'd say I need to be more consistent. Just night in, night out type of stuff."


Rob Marberry.

HT: 6-foot-8. / WT: 225

Projected position: Power forward.

A close friend of Justin Johnson's, Marberry will walk-on at WKU his freshman season before going on scholarship starting with the 2015-16' academic year.

He played AAU alongside Johnson for the Travelers, averaging 7.5 points and 4.6 rebounds per game while shooting 53 percent from the field.

In a 79-72 regular season win over 2015 Malik Newman and the Jackson Tigers, Marberry contributed 10 points and 9 rebounds off the bench in 22 minutes of play, finishing 5-for-10 overall from the field.

The Franklin Road Academy senior picked WKU over offers from Middle Tennessee, Belmont, Toledo and several others.

Stay tuned with WKUInsider.com for the latest in WKU recruiting and team news.

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Western Kentucky landed a nice pledge on Monday night when Avery Patterson made his decision.

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