Vaughn announced Tuesday night on the CBS Sports Network that he is verbally committed to the Rebels. Vaughn will join Baltimore forward Dwayne Morgan and Massachusetts center Goodluck Okonoboh in one of the nation's top recruiting classes.
The 6-foot-5 Vaughn is ranked seventh nationally by recruiting publication Rivals.com, and 13th by Scout.com.
Vaughn played his first three seasons of prep ball at Robbinsdale Cooper High near Minneapolis. He transferred to Findlay Prep in Las Vegas for his senior year and is averaging 20 points per game.
Iowa State was thought to be UNLV's main competition for Vaughn, along with North Carolina, Kentucky and Kansas.
Vaughn's commitment is a big boost to the Rebels (16-8, 7-4 MWC), who began Tuesday tied for third in the Mountain West and will likely need to get on a run to earn consideration for the upcoming NCAA tournament.
UNLV coach Dave Rice has led the Rebels to back-to-back NCAA tournament appearances—and the addition of Vaughn will certainly ramp up expectations for the 2014-15 season.
"Me and Coach Rice, we kicked off a relationship from the jump, and I just liked everything he was talking about. I liked the blueprint that he set out for me," Vaughn said. "The recruiting class they've got coming in with me, I feel we can do something special next year."
Vaughn would have been the highest-ranked recruit Iowa State had landed under fourth-year coach Fred Hoiberg.
The Cyclones now have just one prospect lined up for next season in Kansas City-area point guard Clayton Custer. But the spot that Iowa State left open for Vaughn will presumably be used on either another high school prospect or a Division I transfer in the offseason.
Iowa State has proven to be as good as anyone in the country at integrating transfers, with senior star DeAndre Kane the latest example of the program's success in that area.