Men's basketball: Forward commits to UNT

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Colin Voss spent a year refining his skills at Northern Oklahoma-Tonkawa.

That was enough time to make the idea of moving to Denton and playing for North Texas sound awfully appealing.

UNT was in desperate need of frontcourt players with college experience heading into the 2013-14 season after Tony Mitchell declared for the NBA draft this spring.

Voss, a 6-foot-7-inch forward who began his career at Central Michigan, thought he would be a perfect fit, and was more than open to the idea of moving to the Dallas-Fort Worth area after spending a year in Tonkawa, a town with a population of just more than 3,000 a few miles from the Kansas border.

Voss committed to UNT late Tuesday after a weekend visit to the school. He passed on offers from Murray State, Lamar, South Dakota and Detroit Mercy to play for the Mean Green.

“It was the right fit,” Voss said. “It was one of those gut feelings. Sometimes you have to go with that instead of overthinking it.”

Voss went through the pros and cons and decided UNT had a lot to offer as he looked to continue his career following one solid year in junior college.

Voss averaged 11.6 points and 7.7 rebounds per game while leading his team to a 22-4 record. He earned second-team NJCAA All-America honors as a sophomore.

That performance caught the attention of the coaches at UNT, which will make the move to Conference USA next season. Voss will have two years of eligibility remaining with the Mean Green.

“The people and the coaches were part of it,” Voss said of his reasons for choosing UNT. “I liked Denton and the league. Conference USA was intriguing. I played in the MAC, and C-USA is a step up. It’s a challenge that will bring out the best in me.”

UNT will be the third college Voss has played for since starting his career at CMU.

Voss was a top basketball and football prospect at East Grand Rapids (Mich.). He signed with the Chippewas and averaged 1.1 points and 1.3 rebounds as a freshman before redshirting his sophomore year due to a broken wrist.

Voss decided to transfer after Ernie Zeigler, his original head coach at CMU, was fired.

Voss said he believes he finally has found the right fit at UNT.

“I feel like I can really help the team out,” Voss said. “My game is different from the guys they have now. I feel like I can help them win.”

Voss said that he can score in the paint but also has a mid-range game that allows him to be an effective scorer away from the basket.

The Mean Green lost both of its starting forwards last season in Mitchell and Roger Franklin, who graduated.

UNT returns just one player over 6-6 in backup center Keith Coleman and has been preparing to reload since the fall. Head coach Tony Benford added high school forwards Greg Wesley and Josh Friar and center Tony Nunn during the early signing period. UNT then added Central Wyoming forward Armani Flannigan.

UNT officially announced Wednesday that Flannigan had signed a letter of intent.

“He fills an immediate need with our team,” Benford said of Flannigan. “He has the athleticism of a player like Tony Mitchell, which means he can run the floor, rebound and score the basketball. I think he’s the kind of player that can average a double-double each night for this team.”

BRETT VITO can be reached at 940-566-6870 or via Twitter at @brettvito.

 


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