Justin Reed Makes Finalists Roster For The World University Games Team

June 3, 2001

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Justin Reed, a rising sophomore on the Ole Miss men's basketball team, is one of 16 finalists for the 2001 USA World University Games Team, the USA Basketball 10-member Men's Collegiate Committee announced Sunday. Sixteen finalists were also announced for the 2001 USA Basketball World Championship For Young Men Team, following four training sessions at the USA Basketball Men's Trials June 1-3.

Both squads will be trimmed down to 12-man rosters during their respective training camps. The World University Games Team camp will be held Aug. 10-17 in Denver, Colo., at the Denver Nuggets practice facility, before the squad heads to competition in Beijing, China, Aug. 22-Sept. 1.

"I'm very excited about the finalists who we have coming to training camp in Denver in August," said USA World University Games head coach Jerry Dunn, who also heads the Penn State program. "It's a very diverse group of guys, we have some interchangeable personnel who can do a lot of different things. One of the things I'm most impressed with is the personalities, in terms of being winners and guys who will be able to gel as a team."

The Southeastern Conference Freshman and Newcomer of the Year, Reed finished the 2000-01 campaign second on the Rebel squad in both scoring (11.0 ppg) and rebounding (5.9 rpg). His 11.0 scoring average led all SEC freshmen and his 5.9 rebounding average was third among the league's freshmen. The lone unanimous choice for the SEC All-Freshman Team, Reed also earned All-SEC third team, SEC All- Tournament Team and All-Star Sports Freshman All-America third team accolades. He posted three double-doubles and recorded a career-high 21 points on two occasions during the season.

"I got off to a little bit of a rough start the first day because I had some problems breathing (as a result of the high altitude)," said Reed. "I thought I missed my chance of making either one of these teams. But once I got it together, I got my wind back and started making some shots, then I thought I still had a chance of making one of the teams.

"When I come back to Denver for the training camp, I'm going to try to be in better shape. I believe that if I was in a little better shape this weekend, I would have been able to adjust to the altitude a little better. I'm going to work on enhancing my skills also so that I can go over to China and help the USA win the gold."

Reed is the third Rebel in the last five years to vie for a spot on a USA squad that will compete internationally. Ansu Sesay played for the U.S. in the 1997 World University Games in Sicily, Italy, while Keith Carter was a member of Team USA in the summer of 1998 at the Goodwill Games in New York, N.Y. Both Sesay and Carter won gold medals with their respective teams.

"I'm really happy that I have the chance to come back and hopefully represent my country. It would mean a lot (to win a gold medal). It might not mean as much to some guys, but it would be just like winning the lottery to me. I haven't won a lot of things, and when I do win something I really cherish it. So winning a gold medal would be like a dream come true."

Reed is one of two players from the Southeastern Conference to make the 16-man finalist roster, as Alabama's Erwin Dudley was also invited to the squad's training camp in August.

The other 14 finalists are: Oklahoma State's Maurice Baker, Wabash Valley Community College's Antwain Barbour, Seton Hall's Andre Barrett, Memphis' Earl Barron, Maryland's Lonny Baxter, Juan Dixon and Tahj Holden, Gonzaga's Dan Dickau, Fresno State's Melvin Ely, Temple's Lynn Greer, Virginia's Roger Mason Jr., Texas' Chris Owens, Marshall's Tamar Slay, and Penn State's Tyler Smith.

Ole Miss head coach Rod Barnes and Boston College head coach Al Skinner will serve as assistant coaches for the 2001 USA Basketball Men's World University Games Team.

 

 

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