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April 16, 2003BATON ROUGE -- The LSU Fighting Tigers basketball team completed what will be one of the nation's top signing classes on Wednesday when national letter-of-intent papers arrived from Capitol High School (Baton Rouge) forward Brandon Bass.
The 6-8, 245 pound Bass averaged 19 points and 14 rebounds in his senior season after averaging 18 points and 13 rebounds as a junior. His Capitol High team was coach by Alvin Stewart.
Bass earned national recognition by being named to the second team of the prestigious Parade Magazine All-American team to go with two straight years of being named first team of the Louisiana Sports Writers Association's All-State Class 4A team. He was also named All-Metro by The Advocate and was the Gatorade Circle of Champions Player of the Year for the state.
Bass has also earned national recognition by playing well in two national all-star games. He was named to the McDonald's All-Star team and scored 14 points and grabbed three rebounds in that game last month in Cleveland. He also played in the EA Sports Roundball Classic in Chicago, getting 16 points, nine rebounds and three assists.
"With the signing of Brandon Bass, it brings to a close an outstanding season for our basketball program, both on and off the floor," said LSU Coach John Brady. "At the same time, it begins a new era by allowing us to have one of the top recruiting classes in the country and ensures the continued growth and progress of our program. Brandon choosing to stay home and play at LSU is a significant accomplishment for us and his impact on our team will be felt immediately. He is a multitalented player, a versatile player and one that will fit in and compliment our returnees along with our group of outstanding recruits. Everyone associated with and that cares about LSU basketball should be excited and begin to look forward to our season next year."
Bass will join fall signees Tack Minor of Booker T. Washington High School of Houston, Ross Neltner of Highlands High in Ft. Thomas, Ky., Darnell Lazare of Woodlawn High in Baton Rouge; and, Regis Koundjia of Laurinburg Institute (North Carolina) via the Central African Republic.
Koundjia, who was also voted a Parade All-American (third team) played in the Roundball Classic with Bass, scoring 12 points and grabbing four rebounds.
Minor will be in action Thursday night in national all-star play in the Jordan Capital Classic taking place for the 30th time at the MCI Center in Washington, D. C. The assistant coach for the Silver team that Minor will play on is Joel Hawkins of Southern Lab High School in Baton Rouge.
Neltner was a first-team all-state selection on the Coaches All-State team and is one of the expected finalists for the prestigious Mr. Basketball Award in Kentucky which will be announced Friday in Lexington.