Radford University men’s basketball head coach Mike Jones announced Thursday morning that a trio of newcomers have completed the 2017 class and will be ready to play for the upcoming season.
Orlando, Fla. | St. Petersburg CC
Forward | 6-5 | 195
Owens played two seasons at St. Petersburg College and helped the Titans become state champions as a sophomore. He was named First Team All-FCSAA in the same season and saw action in 34 games. The Orlando, Fla., native averaged 11.1 points per game, 3.3 rebounds per game and 1.9 assists per game in his final season with the Titans. He shot an impressive 40.8 percent behind the arc. Off the court, Owens was recognized as the Hal Chasey Scholar Athlete award winner as the top scholar athlete in Region VIII. Prior to St. Petersburg College, he played four years at University High School and averaged 14.4 points per game, 5.3 rebounds per game, 3.7 assists per game and totaled 346 points as a senior.
Jones’ Thoughts on Tristan Owens: “Tristan brings the kind of skill set and versatility to our team that we love. First, he is a high character young man who values a good education and an opportunity to contribute to a winning culture. He also is an extremely hard worker, who has gotten better, and who will continue to develop during his time with us. Like several of our players, he has helped lead his team to heights never before reached, and we are confident he will help us be successful.”
Leroy Butts IV
Washington, D.C. | Elev8 Sports Institute
Forward | 6-7 | 210
Butts started his high school career playing two seasons at Bishop O’Connell High School, before transferring to Clinton Christian Academy in Marlboro, Md., and ended his career at Elev8 Sports Institute in Delray Beach, Fla. He led Bishop O’Connell to a championship in 2012-13 and was named all-metro second team. In 2014-15 with Clinton Christian he averaged 15 points and 12 rebounds per game and averaged just over 15 points per game and eight boards at Elev8 Sports Institute leading them to a 29-3 record as a senior. The Washington, D.C., native was rated a three-star performer by ESPN, Rivals and 247Sports in the class of 2016 and was ranked among 247sports.com’s top 150 players nationally.
Jones’ Thoughts on Leroy Butts IV: “Leroy brings us the versatility we look for in our forwards with his ability to score facing up and with his back to the basket, along with his ability to defend and rebound playing multiple positions. His story is, in some ways, unbelievable, and we are very fortunate to have found him so late in the process. You root for guys like him because of his perseverance through adversity. He has a bright future ahead of him in a Radford uniform.”
Travis Fields, Jr.
Portsmouth| Old Dominion | Highlights
Guard | 5-10 | 150
Fields, Jr. played one season at Old Dominion and appeared in 28 games, averaging 5.6 minutes per contest. In high school, Fields, Jr. led I.C. Norcom High School to three straight state titles – the most consecutive championships in school history – and a combined 99-19 record during his career. The Portsmouth, Va., native averaged 17.7 points, 5.5 assists and 2.6 steals as a senior, leading the team to an impressive 29-1 record.
Jones’ thoughts on Travis Fields, Jr.: “Travis provides us with a point guard that is a penetrator, who is a pass-first guy and someone capable of pressuring the other team’s point guard 94 feet. He is a fearless competitor who will bring an enhanced level of aggressiveness to practice every day. He fits with our blue-collar, workman like approach because of how he competes every day, regardless of the opponent.”
The trio of newcomers will join a team that returns all five starters as well as four key contributors off the bench. Additionally, redshirt freshman Carlik Jones will see his first action as a Highlander in 2017-18.
Along with the three scholarship players are the additions of John Caldwell and Anias Saunders. Caldwell transfers to Radford after playing two seasons at Roanoke College. Last season, Caldwell averaged 16.2 points per game and 5.8 rebounds per game. He saw action in 25 games and had a 46.8 field goal percentage and a 42.6 three-point percentage and earned Second Team All-ODAC.
Saunders is an incoming freshman that played four seasons at Eastern View High School in Culpeper, Va. He averaged 19 points, eight rebounds, six assists and two steals per game as a senior. He is the only 1,000 point scorer at Culpeper and led his team to a 21-4 record in his final season.