All-State Post Player and Point Guard Sign Letters of Intent
PROVO -- BYU Head Basketball Coach Steve Cleveland announced Thursday that two players have committed to join the Cougar program beginning next season. Cleveland has received NCAA Letters-of-Intent from all-state forward/center Jared Jensen and former all-state point guard Shawn Opunui, who had previously committed to the Cougars before departing on an LDS Church mission.
A 6-foot-9, 240-pound center from Plain City, Utah, Jensen is entering his senior season at Fremont High School where he scored 17 points and pulled down 10 rebounds per game as a junior. Jensen earned Salt Lake Tribune and Deseret News All-State honors and Ogden Standard Examiner All-Area recognition last season while being named Team MVP of the Silver Wolves. A 4.0 student who plans to major in engineering, Jensen is a talented offensive post player who has started at Fremont High since mid-way through his freshman season.
"Jared is an intelligent student-athlete who has a great understanding of low post offensive play," Cleveland said. "As he develops that same understanding and desire to defend at this level he has an opportunity to have an immediate impact on our program."
Opunui, a 5-foot-11, 170-pound point guard, previously announced his intent to play at BYU during his senior season at Orem High School. After returning from a mission, Opunui has signed to join the Cougars for the 2001-02 season. Widely regarded as the best high school point guard in Utah while at Orem High, the all-state guard scored 21.7 points per game for the Tigers while dishing out more than six assists per contest. A strong offensive player and solid defender, Opunui shot nearly 91 percent from the free throw line, third best in state history, and 40 percent on three-point attempts. His 401 assists put him on the state's top-10 all-time list.
"Shawn is an athletic point guard who has excellent open court passing skills and is an outstanding three-point shooter," Cleveland said. "Shawn's ability to break defenses down with the dribble will create offensive opportunities for all of his teammates. Shawn should have an immediate impact on the program."
(player profiles follow)
6-9, 240 -- Forward/Center
Plain City, Utah
Entering his senior season as an all-state center at Fremont High School ... averaged 17 points and 10 rebounds per game last year as a junior ... earned Salt Lake Tribune and Deseret News All-State honors and Ogden Standard Examiner All-Area recognition last year ... named Team Most Valuable Player on the Silver Wolves ... a talented offensive player in the low-post who can also score with his jumper ... played center in high school but will likely play power forward in college ... was coached by Bryce Ballif and will be coached by Bernie Granziano his senior year.
5-11, 170 -- Point Guard
All-State point guard at Orem High School in1999 ... averaged 21.7 points and 6.1 assists per game his senior season ... shot 90.5 percent from the foul line, third best in state history ... 40 percent three-point shooter ... Opunui finished his high school career with 401 assists, which put in the state's top 10 all-time ... extremely athletic and was widely recognized as best high school point guard in Utah...breaks down defenses with his dribble and is a solid defender ... loves pushing the ball up the floor ... true point guard with great court vision ... super passer and great penetrator ... was coached by Matt Logan who says Opunui is the best athlete he's seen at point guard in 11 years of coaching in Utah.