By Kevin McPherson
LITTLE ROCK — Jacksonville sophomore-transfer Janaud “JD” Notae (6-2 guard, native of Covington, GA) has committed to Arkansas, marking Head Hog Eric Musselman’s fourth transfer pledge since April 20.
“First I want to thank God for giving me another opportunity to get an educaton and play basketball,” Notae said in a statement he released on Twitter on Wednesday. “I also want to thank all the coaches who give me a chance to be a part of their program. With th help of my family and friends, I’m excited to cotninue my career at the University of Arkansas.”
Minutes after his commitment, Notae talked more about his decision to call the Hogs.
“Just the opportunity to play in the SEC with an NBA level coach,” he said of the factors that weighed heavily in his UA commitment. “The relationship I had with the coaches and how I can develop my game and become a better player.”
Notae visited Arkansas on May 14-15, and he chose the Hogs over Seton Hall, Iowa State, Oklahoma State, Western Kentucky, Creighton, Buffalo, North Carolina-Greensboro, and others.
Notae said he had a “great visit” to Fayetteville, and a source confirmed it went “extremely well” and that Hogs coaches were impressed with Notae’s toughness and production in his two seasons at Jacksonville.
Notae — he’ll have two years to play two after a redshirt season in 2019-20 — entered the transfer portal in late March following the Dolphins’ 12-20 (5-11 ASUN) season. He was named second-team All ASUN in ’18-19 as a sophomore at Jacksonville, which competed against league member Stetson where Arkansas assistant coach Corey Williams was head coach from ’13-14 through ’18-19.
As a sophomore in ’18-19, Notae averaged 15.5 points, 6.2 rebounds, 3.4 assists, and 1.6 steals in 31.4 minutes while shooting 42.7% field goals (including 32.0% from 3) plus 73.0% free throws through 32 games for the Jacksonville Dolphins.
Notae went off for a career-high 40 points to go with 8 rebounds, 5 assists, 1 steal, and 1 block in Jacksonville’s 123-77 win over Florida Memorial on November 21, 2018. He also had a triple double: 15 points, 10 rebounds, and 10 assists in Jacksonville’s 90-70 win over Kennessaw State on January 9, 2019. He had nine games of 20 or more points last season.
As a freshman in ’17-18, Notae averaged 15.4 points, 4.7 rebounds, 1.9 assists, and 1.8 steals in 29.1 minutes while shooting 41.0% field goals (including 40.5% from 3) plus 69.9% free throws in 28 games for the Dolphins.
Notae becomes Arkansas’s fourth transfer addition this spring as he joins North Carolina-Wilmington grad-transfer Jeantal Cylla (6-7 forward who committed to the Hogs on April 20 during his visit to Arkansas), California-Berkeley freshman-transfer and Little Rock native Connor Vanover (7-3 stretch-5 who visited Arkansas on May 9-10 before committing to the Hogs on May 15), and Iowa grad-transfer Isaiah Moss (6-5 wing who visited Arkansas on May 10-12 before committing to the Hogs on May 15) to form a veteran 2019 class for Musselman.
Once he hits the floor for practice with the Hogs, Notae becomes the seventh backcourt player on the team’s current roster as he’ll join sophomore Isaiah Joe, sophomore Desi Sills, junior Mason Jones, junior Jalen Harris, freshman Justice Hill, and senior Isaiah Moss.
Linked is an extended highlight reel of Notae from his ’18-19 season at Jacksonville …