OXFORD, Ohio—Miami University’s men’s basketball team signed three players to national letters of intent, head coach Charlie Coles announced today (Nov. 8). Set to join the RedHawk program in the 2007-08 season are guard Kenny Hayes (Dayton, Ohio/Northmont/Cincinnati State), forward Dwight McCombs (Chicago, Ill./Whiney Young) and forward Nick Winbush (Shaker Heights, Ohio/Shaker Heights).
Hayes , a 6-foot-2, 170-pound guard, averaged 19.1 points, 5.0 assists and 4.0 rebounds per game at Northmont High School while shooting 46.0 percent from 3-point range and 85.0 percent from the free-throw line. He was tabbed the 2005 GWOC Player of the Year and earned third-team all-state honors as a senior. Hayes was a first-team all-league selection and earned Fanfile Magazine first-team all-area accolades as well as being named the player of the game at the District 9 All-Star Game. Last season, he averaged 17.0 ppg 3.0 apg, 3.0 rpg and shot 49.0 percent from 3-point range and 89.0 percent from the free-throw line en route to second-team all-league honors at St. Catherine Junior College. He is attending Cincinnati State this year.
“I think Kenny Hayes is going to be a very good player for us,” said Coles. “He gives us another guard who can handle the ball, can really pass and can score. He also can beat his opponents off the dribble. When Kenny teams up with the guards we have now, it will be the first time in a long time we’ve had this many guards who are capable of being very good players. We are anxiously awaiting his arrival, and we believe he will make a big difference in our team.”
McCombs , a 6-foot-7, 215-pound forward, averaged 12.4 ppg, 8.7 rpg, 4.0 bpg and 3.0 apg as a junior for Whitney M. Young High School. He is a three-year letterwinner for the Dolphins, serving as team captain as a junior and senior. Last season, McCombs earned all-conference honors. McCombs is touted as one of the top power forwards in the state of Illinois.
“Of the three guys, Dwight McCombs is the one who is has the most potential right now,” said Coles. ”Kenny and Nick are nearing where they should be in terms of potential. Dwight is a very young high school senior, and he is a guy who is capable of being an outstanding player. One of the things that I think he is going to be able to do well immediately is run the floor, and that’s a real bonus for a big man.”
Winbush , a 6-foot-7, 197-pound forward, averaged 17.0 ppg and 8.0 rpg as a junior at Shaker Heights High School. He was an all-state honorable mention selection last season and also earned all-league and all-district honors. He is a two year letterwinner for the Raiders and serves as team captain this season.
“Nick Winbush is probably the best ball-handler I’ve ever recruited at that height,” said Coles. “To me, he’s a forward who really gives us another guard on the floor in terms of skill. Whatever the guards can do ball-handling-wise, he can equal in skill. That’s an added dimension. He’s a guy who can really run the court. Most people that I’ve talked to think that Nick is going to be an outstanding player. He has a very high ceiling in terms of potential.
“This is probably the best group of players that I’ve ever been a part of signing,” continued Coles. “They are all going to make their mark at Miami University, and I am extremely excited they are joining our program.