While the coronavirus pandemic has kept college athletes off the playing fields this spring, it hasn't stopped UNI basketball coach Ben Jacobson from preparing for the future.

The Panthers have added two new players to their program, signing Iowa prep star Drew Daniel and George Mason transfer Goanar Mar during the 2020 spring signing period. Daniel and Mar join a recruiting class that includes three other prep standouts who signed with UNI in November.

“We are excited to add Goanar and Drew to our recruiting class,” Jacobson said in a press release announcing the signings. “They have demonstrated a great work ethic in the classroom, on the court and have proven themselves as teammates and winners."

Mar is a talented 6'7" forward, who played three years at George Mason. He started every game for the Patriots as a freshman, averaging 10.9 PPG and 4.4 RPG while shooting 35 percent from beyond the arc. Mar played in 19 games during an injury-plagued sophomore season, then competed in 31 games as a junior.

Source: UNI Athletics

A Minnesota native, Mar played prep basketball for DeLaSalle High School in Minneapolis. There, he helped lead the Islanders to four-consecutive Class 3A state titles and was one of five finalists for the 2017 Minnesota Mr. Basketball Award.

"We have known Goanar for a number years and have always been impressed with his mentality and approach." Jacobson said. "He is a tremendous defender and brings a wealth of experience that will immediately impact our program."

Daniel is a 6'6" forward from Dowling Catholic High School in West Des Moines. He helped led the Maroons to consecutive state tournament appearances in 2019 and 2020. This past season, Daniel was named to the All-Central Iowa Metro League second team after averaging 8.7 PPG and 5.8 RPG while shooting 37-percent from beyond the three-point arc.

"We like his size, his length and his ability to make threes," Jacobson said. "We know Drew loves the gym and look forward to his development.”

UNI inked Iowa high school stars Bowen Born and Trytan Anderson in November, along with Nate Heise of Lake City, Minn.

Born was selected as Iowa's 2020 Mr. Basketball and named the state's 2019-20 Gatorade Player of the Year after leading Norwalk to the school's first state championship. He averaged 37.4 points, 4.7 rebounds, 4.1 assists and 2.2 steals through 25 games. Born scored 983 his senior season and finished his remarkable prep career with 2,494 points, the sixth high-total in state history.

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