Article Written by UNCG Sports Information Department, Video and Pictures from WFMY News 2 Sports:
GREENSBORO, N.C. - UNCG men's basketball head coach Wes Miller announced the signings of two high school standouts in guard Diante Baldwin (High Point, N.C./High Point Christian Academy) and center/forward Jordy Kuiper (Groningen, Netherlands/Canaries Basketball Academy) to national letters of intent Thursday during the spring signing period.
Baldwin and Kuiper join the Spartans' signing class that already includes Clay Byrd (Connelly Springs, N.C./East Burke), Tevon Saddler (Baltimore, Md./St. Frances) and Tyrone Outlaw (Roxboro, N.C./Person County), who signed in the fall signing period. All five high school standouts will join the Spartans in the fall and are first full recruiting class under Miller's tenure.
"The versatility and overall depth of this class bodes well for the future of UNCG basketball," Miller said. "The most impressive thing about all of these young men is that they come from winning programs and were catalysts to their teams' success. We feel that this is translates to the next level and we are excited about all of them joining the UNCG family."
Baldwin, a 6-0 point guard, was a standout at High Point Christian Academy for head coach Brandon Clifford and helped the Cougars to a 55-9-0 record the last two years. He is rated the No. 6 point guard in the state of North Carolina in the 2013 class by Basketball Elite and is the 24th rated overall played in the state by ESPN. He participated in Dave Telep's Carolina Challenge and was named one of the top playmakers at the event.
"Diante is someone that has been a big-time winner with his high school program at High Point Christian and with CP3, a local AAU powerhouse," Miller said. "He is a tremendous competitor and athlete that possesses a winning mentality and elite athleticism that we feel will impact our program."
As a senior, Baldwin averaged 10.2 points, 5.2 assists, 4.1 rebounds and 2.3 steals per game leading High Point Christian to a 25-7 record. He scored in double figures 17 times this year, including posting five double-doubles in points and assists.
Baldwin is a two-time All-NCISAA Piedmont selection and was named to the NCISAA All-State team his junior year when he led the Cougars to the conference championship with a 7-1 league record. He averaged 9.9 points, 5.3 assists, 4.5 rebounds and 2.1 steals per game as a junior while also posting 10 double-doubles in points and assists. He played AAU Basketball for the CP3 All-Stars.
Kuiper, a 6-9 forward, is a native of Groningen, Netherlands and played this past year at the prestigious Canarias Basketball Academy in Spain. The left-handed post player averaged a team-high 16.0 points and 9.0 rebounds per game at the CBA and is a very physical defender. He was rated the ninth best international player at the National Prep School Invitational in Rhode Island this February. Kuiper played high school basketball at N.H. Werkman College in Groningen, Netherlands prior to his final year at Canarias Basketball Academy.
"Jordy is a young man that has been extremely productive against high level international competition and comes from an excellent program in the Canarias Basketball Academy," Miller said. "He possesses an advanced skill set, has a high basketball IQ and plays with a great toughness and energy."
Kuiper is an ambassador for the Bas van de Goor Foundation, whose mission is to enhance the quality of life for people with diabetes through exercise and sport. He uses his own experiences of being a basketball player with diabetes to show people that having diabetes does not have to mean you can't chase and live your dreams.
UNCG/ WFMY News 2 Sports