LAWRENCE, KS (KUAthletics.com) – Guard Malik Newman has signed to play men's basketball at the University of Kansas, head coach Bill Self announced Friday. Newman (6-foot-3, 190 pounds) is a transfer from Mississippi State and will be a sophomore for the 2017-18 season. The Jackson, Mississippi, native will join the KU team this month and, due to transfer rules, will use a redshirt for the 2016-17 season.
In one season at MSU, Newman appeared in all 29 games with 21 starts. He averaged 11.3 points per game with 16 games of 10-plus points, including two 20-point efforts. He was named the SEC Freshman of the Week (12/23) following his 20-point performance against Northern Colorado. He scored a career-high 25 points against Ole Miss (1/23), including seven 3-point field goals made, which was one shy of the MSU school record. Newman made 61 3-pointers for the season.
After the 2015-16 season, Newman declared for the 2016 NBA Draft and following the NBA combine decided to return to school and transfer from Mississippi State.
"We recruited Malik extremely hard out of high school," Self said of the Callaway High School guard. "When he entered the draft and decided to pull his name out and transfer, we convinced him to come to campus. We feel very fortunate that we were able to influence him and his family that this is the best place for him to try to realize his goals both on and off the basketball court."
Newman was a 2014-15 McDonald's All-American and tabbed the No. 2 overall recruit by Scout.com. He was ranked No. 8 by Rivals.com and 247Sports.com and No. 10 by ESPN100. Newman led Callaway to four Class 5A state championships and was twice named Mr. Basketball in the state of Mississippi.
"In our opinion, Malik was a top-five player coming out of high school," Self said. "He's a combo guard that has good size, can really shoot the ball and stretch it. There are things he needs to get better at, but the year off will allow him to address things that the NBA people wanted to see more of out of him. Even though it didn't happen the first time for us, we were excited to know we are getting a fabulous talent – just a year later than what we originally planned."
Newman averaged 29.7 points, 5.7 rebounds and 4.2 assists his senior season at Callaway in leading the Chargers to a 31-3 record in 2014-15. He was the Most Valuable Player of the 2015 state championship game where he scored 25 points and pulled down six rebounds in winning his fourth state title. In addition to the McDonald's game, Newman also participated in the Nike Guard Skills Academy and the LeBron James Skills Academy following his senior season. For his career, Newman tallied 3,108 points, 651 rebounds, 301 assists and 195 steals and his No. 14 jersey was retired at Callaway.
Newman also brings a lot of USA Basketball experience to Kansas. He was a member of the 2014 FIBA U17 gold medal team where he collected MVP honors after averaging 14.9 points and 3.0 assists for the USA. He also won a gold medal at the 2013 FIBU U16 Championship where he earned MVP honors after averaging 16.2 points and collecting 16 steals in five games.
Though he will sit out next season, Newman joins a top-ranked recruiting class for KU that includes guard Josh Jackson, center Udoka Azubuike, forward Mitch Lightfoot and center Evan Maxwell, who will also sit out next season due to transfer rules.
Story idea or news tip? Email us at News@WLBT.COM or call 601-960-4426.
715 South Jefferson Street
Jackson, MS 39201