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Recruiting: Top prospects sign on with Missouri Valley squads

Drake, Loyola-Chicago, and Illinois State benefit from early signing period.

NCAA Basketball: NCAA Tournament-Second Round-UNI vs Texas A&M Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

The Missouri Valley Conference continued to fight for its title as a top-tier mid-major conference on Wednesday, signing several key recruits. Here are some of the highlights:

Teyvion Kirk (Joliet West, IL), Guard, Drake

Kirk is the No. 13 overall guard and No. 5 guard in Illinois, according to Prep Hoops Illinois. He is versatile, can pass, create assists, and even shoot. Drake is known for its guard play, and Kirk should be a factor immediately when he steps on campus.

Christian Negron (Larkin, IL), Power Forward, Loyola-Chicago

This is a huge get for Porter Moser and his squad, considering Negron picked Loyola over Iowa and Illinois. He’s rated as a three-star power forward by 247Sports and is the seventh-best player in Illinois. Negron’s ability to also play the win will be helpful for Loyola, given that he is a bit undersized. His range and athleticism will help give Moser depth in the front court.

Cameron Krutwig (Jacobs, IL), Center, Loyola-Chicago

Centers in recent years have been difficult to come by, but Moser gets another good athlete in Krutwig. He’s the eighth-best player in Illinois and will be an asset next year. He can score, move in the post, and given his size, will consistently need to be guarded.

William Tinsley (Lake Land College, IL), Guard, Illinois State

Illinois State adds to its depth in the backcourt with JuCo guard William Tinsley, a guy who averaged 15.5. points and 5.4 rebounds per game last season at Lake Land. Tinsley’s development there has been important and he will benefit Illinois State because he’ll be ready to go immediately when he arrives on campus.

Austin Phyfe (Waverly Shell-Rock HS, IA), Forward, Northern Iowa

Phyfe is a local product out of Iowa, but the No. 2 recruit in the state. He’ll join the frontcourt of a Panthers team that will look to continue its posteason runs in the coming years. He averaged 14.5 ppg and 8.4 rebounds per game as a junior in high school. If he continues to take a leap this year in his senior season, he’ll be a great asset to UNI.