Florida Tech Panthers Add Size, Mobility, Sign 6-foot-10 Big Man Richard ‘RJ’ Coil
By Florida Tech Sports // May 12, 2016
R.J. Coil originally signed with NCAA Division I Marist out of high school
BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FLORIDA – Head coach Billy Mims added the first piece to his 2016 puzzle on Wednesday, as the Florida Tech men’s basketball program announced the signing of Richard “R.J.” Coil for the upcoming season.
At 6-foot-10, 245 pounds, Mims is excited to add a mobile big man like Coil that he feels can help make an immediate impact.
“The very first time I watched him play I thought he’d be a great fit for Florida Tech,” Mims said.
“He fills a void in our roster make-up right now. I think he’ll be somebody that will score the ball for us both inside and out. I think he will rebound well, and defensively around the basket, I think he utilizes his size and length very well. I also think he’s a very smart player, a cerebral player. I think he’ll pick up our system very quickly. R.J. has the talent to help our program night in and night out.”
Originally from Toledo, Ohio, Coil is no stranger to transition. As a senior at Ottawa Hills High School, the fleet-footed center received first team all-league and all-district honors after averaging 15 points, nine rebounds, and three blocks per game.
The soon-to-be 20-year old then opted to sign with NCAA Division I Marist, where he redshirted for one season, before ultimately deciding it was best to make another jump to Schoolcraft College in Dearborn, Michigan.
In his lone season with the Ocelots in 2015-16, Coil registered 6.1 points per game on 48.6% shooting to go along with 5.6 rebounds and 1.5 blocks per contest, helping lead the program to its second straight trip to the NJCAA DII National Tournament. Coil’s immediate contributions even earned praise from his former coach.
“R.J. is an exceptional person and a very well-rounded player who continually works hard in the weight room and on the floor to improve all aspects of his game,” said Abe Mashour, who also coached current Florida Tech assistant DeMario Robinson while at Henry Ford Community College.
“He is the consummate team player who can help you win with his shooting, rebounding, post presence or with the way he protects the rim.”
Once Mims heard words like that from Mashour, he admits Coil was too difficult to pass up.
“We’ve had a lot of Abe’s players in recent years come from that area and have done well for us at Florida Tech,” he said.
“When Abe tells me he has a good player, it’s always worth taking a look.”
Coil has three years of eligibility remaining and will enroll with his AA degree from Schoolcraft. He will pursue his bachelor’s in Business Administration.
“I chose Florida Tech because I have a lot of respect for Coach Mims and his staff, and my coaches at Schoolcraft had only good things to say,” said Coil.
“I loved the campus the second I stepped on it and thought I meshed really well with the guys when I went down for my official visit. It’s definitely a place I can see myself for the next three years.”
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