Basketball adds to roster

Since the end of last season, the University of Indianapolis men’s basketball team has welcomed five new players: four transfers and one recruit.

Leavon Head, the single freshman guard recruit, graduated from Mundelein High School in Mundelein, Ill. During his senior year in high school, he led the team to its best season in school history. He was named Illinois Basketball Coaches Association Honorable Mention All-State and averaged 8.3 points and 2.3 assists per game. Head also made 40 three-pointers that helped his school win 29 games before losing in the sectional finals to 4A state runner-up Warren High School. Head is a business major and hopes to earn his degree while playing ball.

“I wish to own my own business someday,” he said. “Mainly I’m here because I love basketball, and I want to do what I love.”

Junior forward Will Smith transferred from Louisburg Community College in April.

“I transferred hoping to earn a conference title,” Smith said.

He graduated from Norview High School in Norfolk, Va. During his high school career, he earned four letters playing on the basketball team. In his first year at Louisburg, Smith averaged 3.6 points and 3.6 rebounds per game. His efforts helped the Hurricanes win the District 15 championship and advance to the nationals for the first time in school history. Smith improved during his second year, averaging 7.4 points and 6.2 rebounds, 1.8 assists and 1.3 steals per game. He shot 47.4 percent from the field and 70.7 percent from the free-throw line. Smith is majoring in criminal justice.

Jordan “Reece” Cheatham, a sophomore guard from Wabash Valley College, played both basketball and baseball. He graduated from Pike High School in Indianapolis. While in high school, Cheatham was named in the Hoosier Basketball Magazine Top 100 seniors, averaging 12.9 points and 2.9 assists per game. He also played baseball in high school with a .517 batting average, and eight doubles, 12 runs and 25 RBIs as a senior. Cheatham was drafted by the White Sox in the 43rd round.

“It [playing with the White Sox] was the best time of my life,”  he said. “I had a good career and I grew up faster.”

Cheatham played professional baseball for the last four years but is now back in school studying for a degree in sports management.

Junior forward Mikel Brigham transferred from Mott Community College after playing two seasons for the Bears. He graduated from Marion High School after first starting his high school career at Danville High School in Danville Mich. He was named in the Hoosier Basketball Magazine Top 100 Seniors and Indiana Basketball Coaches Association Honorable Mention All-State. During his time at Mott, he averaged 13.6 points his freshman year and 13.4 points his sophomore year. He helped lead the Bears to a 33-3 record and No. 1 in the country in the final NJCAA poll. He also was named District 9 Tournament MVP.

“I look forward to playing with the team and starting a family here and trying to win as many games as possible,” Brigham said.

Brigham transferred to UIndy this fall and is majoring in business.

Jared Grady, a junior guard from Delaware State, played in 18 games and started three. Grady averaged 2.8 points and 1.9 rebounds per game. Before attending Delaware State, he also attended prep school at Mt. Zion Christian Academy, where he averaged 25 points, six rebounds and four assists per game.

“I came here to pursue my basketball career,” said Grady. “[UIndy] is a great school, facilities are great and the coaching staff is tremendous. Players just get a lot of love here and it’s a great place to bring my talents to.”

Grady graduated from Hillside High School in Durham, N.C.  During his senior year, he averaged 19.4 points per game and was named first team all-conference and first team all-area player. Grady is a sports management major.

Head Coach Stan Gouard said that he looks forward to this season with the new additions and that his senior players have done a great job of welcoming the new players to the team.

“I feel like all these guys that we brought in can come in and play right away, even our freshmen,” Gouard said. “[Senior guard] Adrian Moss and [senior center] Wilbur O’Neal do a great job making sure guys come in from day one and feel comfortable with what we do.”

The Greyhounds will host the first game of the season on Nov. 11.