By Jordan Burton (For OzarksSportsZone.com)
Dana Ford has officially been the head coach at Missouri State for less than 30 hours and he’s already reeled in his first commitment in the form of 2019 6-foot-6 Parkview G/F Tyem Freeman.
Friday morning Freeman announced via Twitter that he has committed to Missouri State.
— Ty Freeman (@TyemFreeman) March 23, 2018
“Going to Missouri State has always been a dream of mine and now I get to live that dream,” said Freeman.
“I picked Missouri State because it’s in my backyard and my parents can watch me. I just believe Coach Ford is great and an amazing coach and he’ll be great for MSU.”
As a junior he averaged 23.4 points, 6.8 rebounds and 2.2 steals, earning All-Ozark Conference and all-state honors this season for Landon Cornish’s Vikings – who advanced to the Class 5 Elite Eight.
The news came as a surprise to some. Freeman recently took a visit to Wichita State and Kansas State has been extremely active in the recruiting process.
Freeman played for MOKAN Elite last summer, leading programs like Missouri State and Bradley to offer him.
Playing for Adidas sponsored Team MO Carroll this summer will likely bring even more interest. Ford was able to head off what will like be a circus recruitment this summer with an early commitment.
Ford and Freeman spoke last night via phone. While the two haven’t met in person, Ford was obviously excited with the news of the commitment.
“He was very excited and very shocked and said when he gets into town that I would have to visit,” said Freeman.
Freeman will forever be linked as Ford’s first commitment, but could be a key in Missouri State recruiting a loaded crop of 2019 prospects across the state.
The early commitment also takes the pressure off of his shoulders of worrying about where he’ll play his college ball, but Freeman was adamant in saying that he fully plans on continuing to take care of business this summer and next winter.
Let’s get it! ????????⤴ https://t.co/vab7Ctp8i8
— Jared Ridder (@jared_ridder) March 23, 2018
Current Missouri State redshirt freshman and former Kickapoo star Jared Ridder is clearly excited about the news of his future teammate. Now, two of the biggest names to come out of SPS will have the task of helping a new coach get the hometown program back to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in decades.
That’s something that Freeman is excited about.
“I haven’t gotten the chance to talk to him (Ridder) yet but I’m sure he is happy too,” said Freeman. “For us to get Missouri State back to the tournament would be an honor and that’s what we’re going to try to do.”