Men's Basketball Adds Depth To Backcourt; Welcome Three More To 2012-13 Roster

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HAMDEN, Conn. – Quinnipiac University Men's Basketball Head Coach Tom Moore has announced three additional signings that will join the Bobcats' roster for the 2012-13 campaign. Guards Tariq Carey (Union, N.J.), Shaquille Shannon (Philadelphia, Pa.) and James Ford (Hopewell, Va.) will join the Bobcats' quest for their first trip to the NCAA Tournament next season.

Tariq Carey, a 6-foot-2 point guard from Union, N.J., comes to Quinnipiac after wrapping up a stellar high school career at Newark Eastside and perennial powerhouse St. Anthony's. Carey spent his first three seasons with the Red Raiders, where he averaged over 11 points per game through three seasons. He then transferred over to St. Anthony's and enjoyed an outstanding senior season with the Friars. Carey led the team to a perfect 32-0 record, finishing the season as the #1 ranked team in the country. He averaged 9.8 points and 4.5 rebounds along the way.

"I am thrilled to welcome Tariq Carey to our Quinnipiac Basketball family," said Coach Moore. "He is a very good offensive player who has good strength and a college-ready body. We plan to use him as both a point guard and a shooting guard. He brings great shooting range, a tight handle, and an ability to get in the lane and create offense off the dribble."

Carey was regarded as one of the Top 10 players for the state of New Jersey, according to the NBE in 2011. His ability to attack the lane, finish and distribute makes him a viable candidate for playing time next year. In the 2012 NJSIAA Tournament of Champions, Carey proved his offensive capabilities with an 18-point performance in the championship game. Defensively, he is very aggressive and is adept at racking up steals and initiating fast breaks.

"Myself and every member of East Side High School would like to say how proud we are that Tariq is attending Quinnipiac University," said ESHS Men's Basketball Head Coach Troy Long. "Tariq is a personable young man that we watched grow up from the 7th grade. Quinnipiac is getting a combo guard who can score in bunches when you ask him to, play lock down defense, or run your team. He learned so much from a Hall of Fame coach and now I'm excited to see him play at the collegiate level. Quinnipiac just got a lot of fans from Newark!"

Shaquille Shannon, a 6-foot-2 guard from Philadelphia, Pa., will arrive on campus this summer with two years of eligibility for the Bobcats. Shannon was enrolled at Connors State Junior College in Warner, Oklahoma, where he played for two seasons. Most recently, he led the Cowboys to a 22-8 record and a trip to the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Region II Tournament Quarterfinals. The Cowboys led the nation in field goal shooting percentage (54 percent) for the season, ranked #4 in three-point shooting (40 percent) and #8 in the nation in free-throw shooting (70 percent). Shannon played a large role in the offensive prowess, leading the team in three-point field goal percentage (56 percent), and ranked second in field goal percentage (52 percent) and free-throw percentage (75 percent). He averaged 12.6 points and 5.3 rebounds per game.

"Shaquille Shannon is a great addition to our program," said Coach Moore. "He is another combo guard who brings two years of experience at the highest level of junior college basketball. Shaq is a terrific three-point shooter and a great rebounder from the backcourt position. I expect his toughness and junior college experience to really help our backcourt."

Prior to Connors State Junior College, Shannon attended Communications Technology High School for four years. Shannon led the Blue and Gold to a strong finish in 2010, while picking up several individual achievements as well. He was named to the Daily News All-City Team and the Daily News All-Public Third Team in his senior season.

"Shaq is a great person that works extremely hard in the classroom and on the court," said Connors State Men's Basketball Head Coach Bill Muse. "He will be successful at everything he does. The fans will love to watch him play because he plays extremely hard."

James Ford, a 6-foot-3 guard from Hopewell, Va., joins Quinnipiac after completing a prolific career at Quality Education Academy (QEA) in Winston-Salem, N.C. Ford led the Pharoahs to a 23-6 record, including a 9-1 mark in Greater Carolina High School Athletic Association (GCHSAA) competition. As the #1 seed in the GCHSAA Tournament, QEA went on to hoist the trophy after outlasting the Body of Christ Christian in the championship game. Ford averaged a team-best 18.5 points, six rebounds and five assists per game in his senior campaign.

"James Ford has a chance to be one of the best shooters that we've had here at Quinnipiac," said Coach Moore. "His size, length, and touch from long range should help us right away. He was one of the best deep shooters that we saw in the scholastic ranks this season. He can also handle the ball, pass well, and has the potential to be a very good defender. I am very excited to add him to our perimeter rotation."

Due in large part to Ford's offensive success, the Quality Education Academy's men's basketball team was ranked seventh in the state of North Carolina at the end of the year. Ford is a tremendous shooter, especially from long distance, and adds length on both ends of the court. Combined with athleticism, Ford soars above the rim with ease, evidenced by his six rebounds per game last season.

"James has been from the day he came to QEA a model citizen, excellent student, and a hard working basketball player," said Quality Education Academy Men's Basketball Head Coach Isaac F. Pitts Jr.  "James is what I call shooters delight; his jump shot is a thing of beauty and picture perfect. He's an extremely loyal kid that will represent your university very well."

The Bobcats will open the 2012-13 campaign with the Paradise Jam in the United States Virgin Islands. For all the latest news, scores and highlights pertaining to the men's basketball program, visit www.QuinnipiacBobcats.com.

Contact: Tony Distasio; ardistasio@quinnipiac.edu