“We’re very excited to welcome Elijah to our program,” Texas coach Shaka Smart said. “He brings winning experience, shot-making ability and has a high basketball IQ. Elijah has a tremendous work ethic and is an extreme competitor.
“Jamion Christian (Mount St. Mary’s head coach) and his staff deserve a great deal of credit for their role in Elijah’s development over the last two seasons,” Smart continued. “Elijah was extremely under-recruited coming out of high school and developed into a first-team all-conference player in their league who is a really good all-around guard.”Pittsburgh, George Washington and Ohio State were also involved for Long, the younger brother of Iowa State’s Naz Mitrou-Long. “He chose them because he loved coach [Shaka] Smart’s style,” CIA Bounce director Tony McIntyre told ZAGSBLOG. “He felt like the expectations were realistic and that he could embrace the style of play and be successful in it immediately. He loved the vision and was comfortable with the staff.” “First of all they know I can take a team to the [March] Madness,” Long said of Texas on Tuesday by phone from Canada. “They said they want me to be able to score the ball on different levels and also lead the team on the court and off the court, bring a lot of energy, compete every day and just basically play my game.” Texas in 2017 also adds point guard Matt Coleman, shooting guard Jase Febres and power forwards Jericho Simms and Royce Hamm. The Longhorns remain in the mix for small forward Brian Bowen and center Mohamed Bamba, who have yet to announce. Bowen said Friday he’s still evaluating his options, while Bamba said he will announce by the NBA Draft on June 22.