The University of Montana announced the signing of three high school prep starts today. The three players were the players who we expected them to sign, 6-2 guard Vaughn Autry, 6-9 center / forward Billy Reader and 6-7 forward Michael Weisner. At the end of the press release it state Tinkle may wait until this spring to sign his remaining two scholarships. Here is the press release:
Grizzlies ink three prep standouts
by: Dave Guffey of UM Sports Information
Thursday, 11/12/2009 Updated: 11/12/2009 1:00 PM
The University of Montana has signed three prep standouts to National Letters of Intent announced fourth year Grizzly Head Coach Wayne Tinkle.
The new additions are Vaughn Autry from Junipero Serra High School (Gardena, Calif.), Billy Reader of Lake Oswego High School (Ore.), and Michael Weisner from Walla Walla High School (Wash.).
Autry, a 6-2, 189-pound combo guard from Inglewood, averaged 16.7 points, 6.1 assists, and 3.0 steals a game as a junior at Junipero Serra High School. Last year he was named first team All-CIF I-AA and second team all-area by the Wave and Daily Breeze (newspapers). His high school coach is Dwan Hurt.
Last year Autry’s team was 24-4 and runner-up for the CIF championship. He was voted the offensive MVP of his league and his team and chosen “Most Improved” on his squad. He set a league record with nine steals in a game.
His parents are Dionne and Stephen Autry (who played basketball at Santa Barbara) of Inglewood. He plans to major in business. Birth date: April 4, 1992.
“I chose Montana because of the coaches, the environment, and the players,” Autry said via a phone interview today. “I feel like it is a winning program, and that is what I am all about – winning.”
“Vaughn has a lot of potential,” Tinkle said. “He can score the ball, and he really has great court vision and sets up his teammates with his passing ability. He plays with a lot of heart. He is right along the lines of the guards who we’ve been bringing in, and we are excited about adding him to our team next year.”
A 6-9, 220-pound center-forward, Reader averaged 10.0 points and 6.0 rebounds per game last year and shot 63% from the field. His head coach at Lake Oswego High School was Mark Shoff.
Reader, from Hillsboro, Ore., turns 18 next June, he is projected to grow to 6-10 or 6-11. Current Minnesota Timberwolves player and UCLA star Kevin Love prepped at Lake Oswego High School.
Last season Reader’s team placed fourth in the state, going 21-4. He was a second team all-league pick a year ago and will serve as a team captain this season.
His parents are LeAnn and Dennis Reader of Martinville, Ill. He is undecided on a major. His birth date is June 3, 1992.
“When I went here on my visit I just had a gut feeling that Montana was the place I wanted to go,” Reader said in a phone interview. “Everything just felt right to me.”
“Billy comes from an outstanding program,” TInkle said. “He has improved over the last seven months more than any post player that we recruited in this class. We really like his game. He is a big, physical post player who plays extremely hard with a lot of energy. He is a very developed post player for his age. He’s young, and we think he can be a threat for us in the post.”
A Columbia Basin Big Nine League first team pick, Weisner is a 6-7 combo forward who averaged 16.7 points and 7.1 rebounds and shot 49% from the field and 44% from three-point range last season. His high school basketball coach is John Golden.
Weisner, originally from Spokane, Wash., was the starting quarterback for the Walla Walla football team, which went 6-4 this season and lost in the second round of the 2009 playoffs. He earned three letters in football and basketball and was a team captain in both sports.
His parents are Holly and Darcy Weisner of Walla Walla. He will major in business at UM. His birth date is August 8, 1991.
“The coaches were the main thing for me in coming to Montana,” Weisner said in a phone interview. “I really like Coach Tinkle. I also really liked the community and the great fan support. It just seemed like the best place for me to go.”
“Mike is a very skilled basketball player with a high IQ,” Tinkle said. “He can really shoot the ball, and he brings a solid set of skills to our program. He was a high-caliber quarterback, and we really feel like when he focuses on one sport, he’s going to take his game to a new level.”
“I think with these three young men we’ve addressed a lot of needs, both on the perimeter and in the post,” Tinkle said. “They are high-character players who are extremely dedicated student-athletes.”
Coach Tinkle said UM has two more scholarships available and that he would more-than-likely save them until the spring to fill them.