Liberty basketball picked up commitments from Brody Peebles and Joseph Venzant nearly one year ago, as they pledged to McKay and the Flames last December. On Wednesday, the first day the pair could make it official, both signed their National Letters of Intent with Liberty.
Peebles and Venzant are both three-star rated prospects according to 247Sports and ranked by PrepHoops as top 250 prospects in the class of 2021. Peebles checked in at No. 193 on that listing while Venzant was ranked No. 226.
“I really think we have two individuals that have a chance to play right away, with an already deep back court,” McKay said of his signing class. “I also think we have young men that could play at really any level of college basketball.”
The 6’3″, 170 pound Peebles is more of a natural point guard, but he could play off the ball as well. Ranked as the No. 4 prospect in the state of Alabama and the No. 73 shooting guard in the country by 247Sports, Peebles averaged 29.1 points, 2.6 rebounds, 2.1 steals, and 1.7 assists during his junior year of high school as he led Hartselle High School in Harselle, Alabama to a 27-7 record. Peebles shot 56% from the floor, 44% from three, and 84% from the free throw line last season. He begins his senior campaign this weekend.
“Brody, he doesn’t look the part,” McKay said. “When you go in the gym, you might think he’s the coach’s son or maybe even a manager, but when he walks between those lines he is a basketball savant. He really understands the game, he is a three level scorer. I liken him a little to what I saw in Ty Jerome when I watched Ty in high school, as well as a kid from BYU named Tyler Haws who is just an outstanding scorer. Brody’s got a bright future. I think when it’s all said and done, he will be one of Liberty men’s basketball’s finest.”
Peebles signed with Liberty over offers from Alabama-Birmingham, Lipscomb, North Alabama, Belmont, Samford, UNC Wilmington, and Wofford. He was the only non-senior to be named ASWA Class 6A first-team all-state last season as he helped lead the Tigers to an Elite Eight finish in the Alabama state tournament. He signed around 9 a.m. Eastern Wednesday morning in a signing ceremony with his team, friends, and family.
“It’s been a long time coming,” Peebles told ASOR following his signing. “Being committed since around December, I’m just really excited to put it on paper and make it official. I’m super excited to get up to Liberty and get going, but it’s definitely a huge step in where I want to be. I’m super excited. It’s a great day.”
The 6’3″, 185 pound Venzant comes to Liberty by way of Midland Christian in Midland, Texas. He committed to the Flames just days after Peebles did last December over offers from Cal State Fullerton, Tulsa, UTEP, UTSA, and Wake Forest. He is ranked a three-star prospect by both Rivals and 247Sports. Rivals has him ranked as the No. 43 shooting guard prospect in the class of 2021.
He helped lead Midland Christian to a Final Four appearance in the state tournament before falling to the eventual TAPPS 6A State Champs John Paul II. Venzant averaged 21 points, 6.3 rebounds, and 3.2 assists per game this past season as a junior and was named MVP of District I for a third consecutive season. He was also named first-team all-state TAPPS 6A for a second consecutive season and was named to the TAPPS Final Four all-tournament team.
“Having had the Virginia experience I did, Tony Bennett loved big guards,” said McKay. “Joseph has this frame, physicality, long arms, length, athleticism that reminds me of a (Malcolm) Brogdon type that we had at UVA or KT Harrell.”