|Three sign with men's basketball|
MOSCOW, Idaho - University of Idaho men's basketball coach Don Verlin announced the signings of one high school senior and two junior college players for the early signing period on Wednesday.
Forward Xavier Bazile of Mt. Tahoma High School (Tacoma, Wash.) joins JC signees Wendell Faines, a forward from Saddleback JC (Lincoln, Neb.), and Anthony Jones, a guard from Paris JC (Memphis, Tenn.).
"We are very excited to add Anthony Jones, Wendell Faines and Xavier Bazile to the Vandal basketball family," Verlin said.
Bazile will be a senior at Mt. Tahoma this year. The 6-4, 190-pound forward averaged 19.6 points and 8.0 rebounds as a junior last year in earning first-team all-Narrows League Bay Division honors. He was a second-team honoree as a sophomore.
He is a three-year starter on the basketball court for the Thunderbirds, and was also a first-team all-Narrows League honoree on the football field. He received NCAA Division I recruiting interest in both sports.
"Xavier is a talented wing who played multiple sports in high school, and we're happy he chose basketball at the University of Idaho," Verlin said. "He continues our string of bringing in some of the best Northwest talent we can attract here. He is a good shooter, a very good athlete and defends the ball very well.
"Xavier is a high-character young man and we look forward to his contributions during his four-year career here at Idaho."
Faines helped lead Saddleback JC to a 26-5 overall record and California state title in 2009-10. He started 26 of 31 games and averaged 7.2 points, 4.9 rebounds and a team-leading 1.8 blocks per game. He also shot 51.4 percent from the field, which was the best on the team.
"We are excited to see Wendell become a Vandal," Verlin said. "He brings not only size and athleticism to our program, but also a hunger and a work ethic that any program can use. He'll be a great addition to our already strong front line."
He will be a sophomore at Saddleback this season as the Gauchos enter 2010-11 as the preseason favorite to repeat as state champions.
"Wendell is a great person and, coming from a very good JC program coached by Andy Ground, he's been coached well and that puts him ahead of the game coming here," Verlin said.
Jones is a 6-4, 200-pound guard who will be a sophomore at Paris JC this season. As a freshman last year at Holmes College (Miss.), Jones averaged 15 points, five rebounds and five assists. He earned second-team all-state honors from the Mississippi Association of Community and Junior Colleges.
"Anthony can play multiple positions in the backcourt," Verlin said. "He hails from the talent-rich city of Memphis, where he led his high school team to the state championship game as a senior."
As a senior at Raleigh-Egypt High School in Memphis, Tenn., Jones led the Pharaohs to a state runner-up finish and a Class AAA Region 7 title in 2008-09.
"He can shoot it, drive it, rebound and defends his position well, and he has good size for guard at 6-4, 200," Verlin said. "He'll be a great addition to next year's backcourt, and will help ease the loss of the graduating seniors from this year's team."
Bazile, Faines and Jones will join Idaho for the 2011-12 season. Idaho opens its 2010-11 regular season this weekend with a home game against Eastern Oregon.