Men's Basketball Signs Canada's Top Big Man

April 25, 2001

PULLMAN, Wash. - Shaminder Gill, a native of Mission, British Columbia, has signed a national letter of intent to play men's basketball for Washington State, WSU Head Coach Paul Graham announced Wednesday.

Tabbed as the number one senior big man in Canada by Hoops Canada, Gill averaged 24 points and 14 rebounds at Philip Pocock High School in Toronto, Ontario, last season after a junior year in which he averaged 26 points and 18 rebounds for Mission Secondary School in Mission, British Columbia.

The 6-foot-8, 225-pound forward is the first Canadian to join the Cougar program since Brent Watson played for WSU in the 1963-64 season. He will pursue a pre-medicine degree.

'We are excited to have `Shami' as part of the Cougar family,' Graham said. 'He will help us on the inside and complement returning players Milton Riley, J Locklier and Framecio Little. At 6-8, 225, he is a skilled player offensively that was heavily recruited by several good schools.'

Gill chose Washington State over Arizona State, Mississippi, Oregon State, Seton Hall and Xavier.

He scored 19 points and grabbed 20 rebounds in the Born To Run All-Star game in Pittsburgh, Pa., earlier this month and earned the game's most valuable player award.

Gill accolades include first team All-Canadian, first team all-province (Ontario) and first team all-city (Toronto). He was also named a starter on the Dorito's All-Canadian all-star team and was selected as a member of the Canadian national junior team.

Gill joins Thomas Kelati, who signed with the Cougars last fall out of Walla Walla High School, in this year's recruiting class.

'We look forward to having Shami step in and contribute immediately,' Graham said. 'We expect to sign one or two more players in the next couple of weeks.'

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