MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Olive Branch High’s D.J. Jeffries and East High’s Malcolm Dandridge signed National Letters of Intent Wednesday to play for the University of Memphis and coach Penny Hardaway.
Jeffries and Dandridge signed NLIs on the first day of the early signing period and become the initial members of the 2019 class.
Jeffries, a 6-foot-7 forward, was a highly sought prospect. He is ranked No. 1 overall in Mississippi and is the No. 9 power forward in the nation, according to 247Sports’ composite rankings. ESPN ranks Jeffries as a five-star recruit and Rivals and 247Sports list him as a four-star prospect.
At No. 47, he is the highest-ranked prospect to join the Memphis program since 2015.
Through the early part of his senior season, Jeffries is 15-of-21 from beyond the arc and shooting 86 percent from the free throw line.
Last season, Jeffries averaged 20.8 points per game in leading Olive Branch to the Class 5A state title. He had 20 points, five rebounds and five blocks in the state semifinals and also scored 20 in the championship game victory over Forest Hill.
After the season, he was named the Jackson Clarion-Ledger Player of the Year. Olive Branch finished with a 25-4 record.
Dandridge, a 6-foot-9 forward, played for Hardaway when he coached at East High before accepting the Memphis head coaching job in March of 2018. Dandridge and Jeffries were teammates on the grassroots basketball team Bluff City Legends.
Dandridge was the first commitment for Hardaway last spring shortly after he became UofM coach. He will join current Tigers Alex Lomax and Ryan Boyce, who also played for East.
A top 150 recruit, Dandridge is listed as a four-star prospect by ESPN and 247Sports. He started on East’s state championship teams in 2017 and 2018 and averaged 7.1 points, 6.6 rebounds and 1.3 blocks last season. He also shot 57.9 percent, the sixth-best percentage in the city.
The early signing period runs through Nov. 21.