Bucs sign junior-college All-American guard

Joe Avento • Updated Apr 26, 2018 at 8:47 PM

East Tennessee State basketball coach Steve Forbes continued the reloading process Thursday when he announced the signing of junior-college All-American Isaiah Tisdale.

Tisdale, a 6-1 guard from Lexington, Kentucky, had drawn interest from several schools, including Indiana. He was the nation’s 15th-rated junior college player last season while playing for Vincennes University in Indiana.

“There was a lot of interest from all over the board, from high majors to really good mids like us,” Forbes said. “We were the last one standing and we’re happy and really proud to be. He’s a good kid.”

Tisdale averaged 17.4 points, 4.6 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game last year while Vincennes went 34-3 and advanced to the junior college Final Four.

“Isaiah is a two-time All-American and a flat-out winner,” Forbes said. “When I first spoke to Vincennes head coach Todd Franklin about him, he told me Isaiah was one of the best all-around guys he’d ever coached and he expressed to me how much he loved him as a person and as a player. That’s high praise coming from a NJCAA Hall of Fame coach and I took that to heart.”

While Tisdale was joining the program, another ETSU player was leaving. Sophomore point guard Jason Williams is going to transfer to another school, Forbes said. The 5-foot-11 point guard from Detroit averaged 2.4 points per game in two seasons with the Bucs.

“I wish Jason nothing but the best in his future endeavors,” Forbes said. “He is an outstanding young man who represented ETSU in a first-class manner.”

Williams’ departure means Forbes has two scholarships left to fill his next recruiting class. He is looking to sign one inside player and a big wing.

Tisdale joins fellow junior college transfers D’Andre Bernard and Tray Boyd, as well as high school recruits Carlos Curtis and Daivien Williamson in the 2018-19 recruiting class. In addition, Patrick Good will become eligible after sitting out a year because of the NCAA transfer rule.

“I really like Coach Forbes and the ETSU program,” Tisdale said. “The entire coaching staff is great. They believe in my abilities both on and off the court and they believe I can help keep the winning tradition going. Coach Forbes loves to win and I love to win.”


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