(FREDERICTON, NB) The UNB REDS men’s basketball team is naming heralded 6’7” shooting guard Malik Grant to their recruiting class of 2022.
The 19-year-old, from Toronto, has signed a U SPORTS Letter of Intent and will join the REDS ahead of the 2022-2023 Atlantic University Sport season.
“Malik was the most versatile prospect we saw all spring,” said REDS head coach Joe Salerno. “He has a great skill set with the size and length to go along with it. His ability to not only score, but also create for others is something that will help our team immensely this season.”
“It's rare that you find a player who, as a coach, you’re confident could play four different positions on the floor and be effective in all of them,” said Coach Salerno.
Grant is coming off two seasons at Kilgore College, in Kilgore, Texas, where he helped the Rangers to consecutive conference championships and back-to-back berths in the national junior college championship tournament.
“The strengths I bring to the table are my ability to shoot from the three-point line, a high basketball IQ, passing skills, my defence and my ability to make plays,” said Grant. “I’ll help hold my teammates accountable. I’m selfless. I’ll look to get the best shot for the team and I’ll do my best to make others better. I’ll be focused on winning.”
Along with his junior college experience, Grant spent time in a couple of the top development programs in Canada, attending the Athlete Institute and participating in the Nike Bounce program.
“Adding Malik is huge for us,” said Coach Salerno. “He’s played in some prestigious programs, at the Institute and Kilgore, and with Nike Bounce. He’s competed at very high levels and his game shows it.
“Not only does he succeed on the court, but he’s a tremendous student as well. His maturity and leadership qualities are also something that our program will benefit from. Malik will be a key part to our team's success this coming season."
Last season, at Kilgore College, Grant was named a member of the conference All-Academic team.
Grant, who considered other options elsewhere in U SPORTS and in the NCAA, says UNB stood out.
“The expertise of the coaching staff and the facilities really caught my attention,” he said. “The interest the coaches showed in me, right from the beginning, was a factor.”
Grant says his short-term goal will be to help the REDS improve their record over last season’s. Longer term, he has his sights set on winning, earning All-Canadian status and playing professionally.
Grant will pursue a Bachelor of Recreation and Sport Studies while attending UNB.
PHOTOS: UNB Athletics/Kilgore College