A pair of highly-touted guards — Malek Harwell from Pocatello's Century High, and Paris Austin from Oakland's Bishop O'Dowd High — signed Wednesday to join the Boise State men's basketball team next season.
Coach Leon Rice said "they’re different kinds of players, but they share the same characteristics with their work ethic, desire to get better and terrific team-first attitude."
Harwell (6-foot-4, 175 pounds) averaged 21.2 points per game last season as a junior, helping lead Century to the 4A state championship game and was a first-team all-state pick by the Idaho Statesman. He turned down offers from Colorado, Wyoming, Utah State, Tulsa and Toledo, among others. I spoke to him when he committed in September.
"The most exciting thing about Malek is his tremendous upside,” Rice said. “That, coupled with his work ethic and drive to be a great player, has this staff confident about his future at Boise State.”
Austin (5-11, 160) committed on Nov. 1, turning down Florida State, Tulsa, Montana and others. He averaged 17 points and five assists per game last season for one of the top teams in California. He''s rated as a four-star recruit by ESPN.com and is ranked as Rivals.com's No. 142 recruit in its top 150.
"There aren’t many guards throughout the country that have Paris’ feel for the game,” said Rice. “He is a unique player because of his leadership and ability to make players around him better and our system will compliment his skill set perfectly."
The Broncos are expected to lose four scholarship seniors after this season: Derrick Marks, Anthony Drmic, Igor Hadziomerovic and Joe Hanstad. They open the season at 4:30 p.m. Friday on the road in Los Angeles against the University of San Diego.