Thursday, November 15, 2001
Enquirer news services
A leading candidate for Kentucky's Mr. Basketball honor, one of Canada's finest and the MVP of the 2001 National Junior College Championship team have signed national letters of intent to play college basketball at Kentucky.
Glasgow (Ky.) High's Brandon Stockton and Canadian Bernard Cote, along with Antwain Barbour of Wabash Valley Community College in Mt. Carmel, Ill., all officially signed Wednesday.
Barbour, who led Elizabethtown High School to the Kentucky state championship in 2000, guided Wabash to the National Junior College Athletic Association Championship in 2001. The 6-5, 180-pound swingman was named the Most Valuable Player of both tournaments. Last summer, he was the only junior college player to participate on the USA World University Games Team, helping the Americans capture the bronze medal in China.
In Antwain (pronounced AN-twon), we're getting a young man who has had remarkable success the past two years, a proven performer, UK coach Tubby Smith said. He continues the tradition of having great players from within the state of Kentucky play basketball for the Wildcats.
Barbour was a 5-foot-8 freshman as an E-town freshman, but grew to 6-5 by his senior season when he lead the team to a 30-5 record while averaging 21.9 points and 7.8 rebounds per game. He shot 54% from the field and 46% from 3-point range. But it was in the 2000 Sweet 16 Tournament when he burst on the college basketball radar screen. In four games at Rupp Arena, he averaged 26 points per game, including a 42-point, 17-rebound performance in the semifinal win over Russell on Saturday morning, and 31 points and eight boards that night in the state title victory over Lexington Catholic. He went on to earn All-State recognition by the Lexington Herald-Leader and the Louisville Courier-Journal.
Last year at Wabash, he averaged 16.0 points, 6.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists for the 36-1 Warriors. In the NJCAA title game against Allegany, he hit five-of-six 3-point shots and totaled 21 points in the victory to finish the tournament averaging 23.0 ppg. In China with USA Basketball, he saw action in all eight games, averaging 5.8 points and 3.4 rebounds per game.
Stockton is already the leading scorer in Glasgow history with 1,871 points, a career 20.5 average. The 5-11, 165-pound point guard also holds the school record for assists with 433. He led the Scotties to the 2001 All A Classic state title where he was named MVP.
His maturity level is exemplary, a model student-athlete, Smith said. He fits the mold of the type of young men we're recruiting here at Kentucky. He'll be a dynamic point guard who brings scoring ability as well as leadership to our team.
Last spring, he was the top vote getter on the Associated Press all-state team and also earned first-team all-state honors by the Herald-Leader and Courier-Journal. The Scotties finished the 2001 season with a 26-6 record while Stockton averaged 29.5 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game. He shot 47.8 percent from the field, 38 percent from 3-point range and 77 percent from the foul line. He has lettered the last three seasons at Glasgow, leading the squad to a 74-17 record overall.
Cote (pronounced Coe-TAY), a 6-9, 225-pound power forward, is entering his final season with Champlain-St. Lambert in Quebec. Last season, he averaged 13 points and nine rebounds while playing less than 24 minutes per game. He led his team to a 10-6 record, a runner-up finish in the conference and a fifth-place showing in the Canadian Nationals. His performance earned him All-Canada team honors.
We've had success recruiting Canadian players and with Bernard, we think we've found another young man who'll bring a level of maturity to our team since he'll be a 20-year-old freshman next season, Smith said. He's got excellent size, his body has physically matured and he possesses very good mobility for a power forward. He should fit into our style of play very well and be an important addition to our team as we try to replace All-American Tayshaun Prince along the front line next season.
In 2000, his first season at Champlain, he averaged 10 points and six boards as the squad finished third in the nine-team province with an 11-5 record. Cote, who is fluent in French and English, is the second Canadian to play for Kentucky. Jamaal Magloire, who lettered for the Cats from 1997-00, was a Toronto native who now plays for the NBA's Charlotte Hornets.
Athletic directors should fax (768-8550) or e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) to the Enquirer the names of athletes signing national letters-of-intent this week.
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