Arkansas-Pine Bluff men’s basketball coach George Ivory has spent the offseason concentrating on adding more big men to his 2013-14 lineup.
His latest signee fits the big man bill.
Sean Tingle, a 6-foot, 8 ½-inch, 240-pound power forward from Vance, Ala., has become the fifth player this offseason to sign a national letter of intent with the Golden Lions. Tingle spent the last two seasons at Shelton State Community College in Alabama, leading that team to an Alabama Community College Conference championship and appearance in the NJCAA tournament.
“He’s a big guy who can run the floor well,” Ivory said Thursday. “He has soft hands. He’s very athletic. He went to the national junior college tournament, so he’s used to winning. He brings great size and athletic ability.”
Tingle’s statistics from the past season weren’t immediately available. He comes from the same junior college that produced graduating UAPB shooting guard Lazabian Jackson.
Tingle is the fourth frontcourt player in Ivory’s signing class, joining Pine Bluff High alumnus and former Seminole (Okla.) State College standout JoVaughn Love, David Tillman of Fort Bend Travis High in Texas and Sterling Smoak of Motlow State Community College in Tennessee.
“We wanted to solidify stuff inside,” Ivory said. “With Daniel (Broughton) coming back and you have Davon (Haynes) — we want (Haynes) to step out a little more — we came up with bigger bodies.”
Five of UAPB’s 2012-13 players were seniors, including center Terrell Kennedy and swingman Mitchell Anderson. So Ivory has filled all of his voids.
“We think we filled some needs, some spots that we lost,” Ivory said. “This is the first time that we’ve had as many big kids.”
The 2012-13 roster was loaded with guards and included only four frontcourt players. Forwards Trent Whiting and Haynes are expected to return for 2013-14, giving UAPB six frontcourt players.
Center Austin Allen, could return to action next season to make it seven. He sat out all of this season for academic reasons, and Ivory said he was waiting to see how much progress Allen has made before determining whether he would be eligible.