Tulsa basketball coach Frank Haith announced today the signing of 6-5 wing DaQuan Jeffries and 6-3 combo guard Elijah Joiner during the November signing period.
Jeffries is a native of Edmond and graduate of Santa Fe High School, who is attending Western Texas Community College. Joiner is a senior at Curie Metropolitan High School in Chicago, Ill.
“This is a great day for the future of our program,” Haith said. “We added two quality young men from terrific families that fit our culture here at Tulsa. Both DaQuan and Elijah fit areas of need for our team. They also add toughness, athleticism and a winning pedigree. I am exciting to welcome DaQuan Jeffries and Elijah Joiner to our family.”
Jeffries spent one year at Oral Roberts, prior to transferring to Western Texas College, and will have two seasons of eligibility at Tulsa.
Through four games at Western Texas, he has averaged 19.9 points, 6 rebounds and 2.3 steals per game. As a freshman at ORU last year, he averaged 6.7 points and 4.4 rebounds, and shot 57 percent from the field. Jeffries earned 2015 Oklahoma Class 6A all-state honors and was named the Defensive Player of the Year in the Central Oklahoma Athletic Conference, leading Santa Fe to the Class 6A state championship finals.
“DaQuan has a great toughness and ruggedness to his game,” said Haith. “He is 6-foot-5, but has a 7-foot wingspan. He is built to be a defensive game changer. He is also a fantastic athlete. With the way we like to play, getting out in transition and putting pressure on our opponents, DaQuan will have the opportunity to show his natural abilities on the basketball court.”
Jeffries averaged 15.8 points and 7.8 rebounds, while shooting 62 percent from the field as a senior at Santa Fe, where he played for three years with current TU guard Curran Scott.
Following his high school senior season, he won dunk contests at the 50th Annual Faith 7 Bowl All-Star Game and the Big All-City Dunk Contest. He played for current Western Texas College coach Andre Owens in AAU as a member of the Oklahoma Impact.
“The sky is the limit with DaQuan,” Owens said. “He has a lot of potential to be a really good player. He’s very humble, and really wants to be good. Defensively, his length and athleticism give the offense nightmares, blocking shots and getting in the passing lanes. Offensively, he uses his athleticism and his will to get offensive rebounds, and he can shoot the ball. He’s a great teammate. I am really trying to push him to be a more vocal leader, but he does it by example every day. He’s the one that comes in first and leaves last, working on his game.”
Joiner led Curie High School to the Illinois Class 4A State Championship last season. Rated a three-star prospect by Rivals.com, Scout.com and 247Sports, he is ranked as the No. 18 combo guard in the country by 247Sports. He is also ranked as the No. 8 overall player and No. 3 shooting guard in state of Illinois by PrepHoops.com. He averaged 11.1 points, 3.5 rebounds and 3.2 assists as a junior last season in leading the Condors to the state title.
“Elijah is a winner,” Haith said. “He won a state title in Illinois’ largest class as a junior and is trying to repeat again as a senior. Much like DaQuan, Elijah’s toughness really jumps out at you. He is a physical guard that has the size to overpower smaller defenders, but also loves to play in transition and set his teammates up for success. His shooting ability also impressed our staff. He has made himself a very good shooter because of his work ethic. Elijah will be a very versatile guard for us over the next four seasons.”
Joiner earned the 2016 Teen of the Year Award by the YMCA of Metro Chicago for his efforts in peacemaking, leadership, sportsmanship and service with the Chicago-area YMCA. A three-year starter at Curie High School with the ability to play at point guard or shooting guard, he averaged nine points, four rebounds and three assists as a sophomore, leading the Condors to the Illinois Class 4A sectional semifinals. He also received offers from Iowa State, Missouri and Texas A&M.
“Tulsa is getting a hard-nosed player who will work hard every day, has a good family background, and loves to win,” said Curie High School head coach Mike Oliver. “He is a stat-stuffer. He doesn’t do one single thing great, but he does a lot of things well. He’s someone who will sacrifice his offense to make other people better. He gets the same enjoyment out of making an assist as he does making a basket. He’s a great rebounder, a good defender, and he’s just a winner. He is a great team player, very vocal, and a good leader.”