Monarchs Sign Two Recruits

November 20, 2001
By ODU Athletics

Nov. 20, 2001

NORFOLK, VA. - - Old Dominion University head basketball coach Blaine Taylor announced the early signing of 6-3 AAU All-American guard, Isaiah Hunter (Charlotte, NC.) and 6-10, 250 pound center, Janko Mrksic (Stoney Creek, Ontario, Canada) to letters-of-intent.

"We are very pleased with the results of our fall recruiting efforts", said Taylor. "These two kids are really our guys. We had early identification, quality recruitment and a very nice fit. We wanted a rangy, competitive, and skilled guard, and Isaiah was the prototype of what we were looking for. In Janko, we were ambitious about wanting to create a more powerful presence in the paint in the future. He is an enthusiastic and physical young man. "

Hunter, an All-Southwest 4A selection at Independence High School in Charlotte, NC., averaged 18.3 points per game and led the conference in free throw percentage at .920. He was a member of the Charlotte Royal AAU 16-under team which won the National Championship in 2000. Last year, as a member of the Charlotte Royals 17-under squad, he helped lead them to third place at the AAU Nationals and was named AAU All American.

In a couple of his best games in high school last year, Hunter scored 23 points against both Richmond County and West Charlotte. In the Richmond Country game, he was seven-for-eight from the floor. "Isaiah is a hard nosed, all out player. He loves to win and I think the people of Hampton Roads will enjoy watching him, said head his high school coach Tony Huggins."

"I think Old Dominion University is an exciting place to be and the coaching staff has different levels of experience, said Hunter. "I loved the campus and am looking forward to playing in the new arena.."

Hunter is the son of Jacqueline Clarke and Irving Hunter. "We are looking forward for the opportunity for our son to play at Old Dominion and for such a high quality staff, " said Mr. Hunter.

Janko Mrksic is a senior at Bishop Ryan Catholic High School in Hamilton, Ontario. While playing for provincial team Grass Roots Canada, he helped lead them to the semi-finals at the NIKE tournament in Orlando, Fla. Mrksic scored 16 points in that semi-final game against Tallahassee. Last June, he helped lead the Canadian Junior National Team to the finals of the World Championships, losing to the USA by one point in the tournament held in France.

"I knew when I visited the campus that Old Dominion was the perfect fit for me, " said Mrksic. The new arena, the Norfolk area really impressed me. I liked the coaches who I believe not only can develop me as a player but also as a person."

"Janko is a big, strong, and tough player," says his high school coach Kevin Daly. " He is a great leader, with a good solid attitude. He has a lot of potential."

Mrksic averaged 34.4 points and 19.2 rebounds a game as a sophomore at Orchard Park. The High School dropped organized athletics last season, and he will be playing at Bishop Ryan this year. Mrksic is the son of Stan and Donna Mrksic.

" These two recruits both have the ability to contribute and have an immediate impact on next year's club," adds Taylor.


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