FRIDAY, MAY 20, 2005
Basketball Signs Marcus Allen and Justin Jack to National Letters of Intent
May 20, 2005
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Jacksonville University basketball coach Cliff Warren has signed 6-foot-7, 225-pound forward Marcus Allen (Hollywood, Fla.) of state powerhouse Dillard High, as well as 6-foot-5 wing Justin Jack (Fort Washington, Md.), younger brother of Georgia Tech point guard Jarrett Jack, to national letters of intent. The duo become the first signees for the Dolphins' new head coach, who returns four starters from last year's 16-13 squad which advanced to the semifinals of the Atlantic Sun Championship.
Allen averaged 15.0 points and 9.0 rebounds as senior at Dillard, which featured a trio of other Division I signees. He helped lead the Panthers to a 22-3 record last season and a trip to the quarterfinals of the Florida Class 5A state championship, where Dillard lost by a point to eventual champion Dwyer. Allen is a skilled inside player who also considered St. Louis, Nebraska and Florida Atlantic.
"It's a chance for me to play close to home and they are really building the program up at JU," said Allen, whose brother, Steve, is a 6-foot-10, 230-pound junior center at Clemson.. They have a good new coach, a new athletic director and the president is just two years into the job. I want to be part of something new and exciting.
"Coach Warren knows the game and has a great reputation from Georgia Tech because he coached under Paul Hewitt. Also, all four coaches are young guys, so in practice they'll really get after us."
"Marcus has the potential to be an impact player in the Atlantic Sun Conference," said Warren, who was named head coach on April 20. "He is unique because he can play in the post and on the perimeter. Marcus also has excellent touch and a good feel for the game."
Jack averaged 16.6 points 9.0 rebounds and 6.0 assists as a senior at Friendly High (Md.), where as the only returning starter he helped lead the Patriots to the regional semifinals. He also helped lead Friendly to back-to-back Maryland 3A state championships as a sophomore and junior. Much like his brother, Jarrett, who attributes much of his success to Warren, Justin's strength is getting to the basket.
"I like the school because it's hands-on and they are ready to make things happen for you," said Jack, who also considered Butler and Ball State. "There's just so much energy down there and it's positive throughout the whole program. Everyone is enthusiastic about getting the program back to where it used to be.
"I know that if I stick with coach Warren and listen to what he has to say, I'm going to be successful. If I come in and work hard, and make the improvements I need to make, I can help the team right away."
"Justin is athletic and can really get to the basket," said Warren, who spent five seasons as an assistant at Georgia Tech. "His versatility will help us because he can play a number of positions."
2004-05 MEN'S BASKETBALL