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Top-50 senior Riley Kugel decommits from Mississippi State

Joe Tipton03/22/22
Article written by:On3 imageJoe Tipton


Riley Kugel / Player submitted photo

Riley Kugel, the No. 43 overall prospect in the 2022 class, has received his release from Mississippi State and will reopen his recruitment, following the Bulldogs’ recent coaching staff change.

Last week, Mississippi State fired head coach Ben Howland after seven seasons. Howland finished with a 134-97 overall record at the helm in Starkville. On Sunday, Mississippi State hired former New Mexico State head coach, Chris Jans as the Bulldogs’ next head coach. With the Aggies, Jans finished with an overall record of 122-32 in five seasons, including four regular-season WAC championships and three NCAA tournament appearances.

“After recent changes with the coaching staff, I have decided that I will be decommitting from Mississippi State University and will re-open my recruitment. Although they have granted my release, Mississippi State will still be an option. Thank you to coach Ben Howland, the fans, and the rest of the coaching staff,” Kugel said in a statement to On3.

Kugel will have no shortage of options after a tremendous senior season

Kugel is one of the biggest stock risers we’ve seen this high school season. Prior to On3’s class of 2022 update in February, Kugel was ranked No. 207 in the Consensus rankings. The Florida native jumped nearly 150 spots as he’s now the No. 67 overall prospect according to the Consensus. On3’s evaluators are on him even higher, ranking him as the 43rd best overall prospect in the class, higher than any other recruiting media company.

On3’s Jamie Shaw recently saw Kugel at the Montverde Academy Invitational Tournament and gave the elite guard some high praise:

“This season has been different. This type of dominating performance has become one we expect from Kugel each game. Even in the games where he faced off against the nationally ranked players, Kugel has routinely been the best on the floor.”

Riley Kugel’s inner beast has started to show through

Prior to choosing the Bulldogs, the 6-foot-5 shooting guard out of Orlando Dr. Phillips considered a final group of Auburn, Houston, Miami, Florida Gulf Coast, and the Overtime Elite League. Expect Kugel to once again have his fair share of high-major options this go around.

Currently still committed to Mississippi State in the 2022 class is four-star Kimani Hamilton (No. 120 overall), Martavious Russell (unranked), and JUCO transfer Jaykwon Walton.

Scouting Report on Riley Kugel

“At 6-5, Kugel has long arms and a physically developed frame. He is comfortable on the ball, showcasing great vision to set up his teammates and his jump shot extends well beyond the arc. His explosion has become a weapon as he gets past his man and is a threat to get on the rim when he touches the paint. Plays with a competitive fire. Good in the passing lanes. Three-level scorer.” – Jamie Shaw, On3’s National Recruiting Analyst