Algie Key Grants Grant Birthday Wish

Anthony Grant received one of the best birthday gifts a basketball coach can wish for as the first day of the regular signing period approaches on Wednesday. Algie Key, a two-time NJCAA third yeam All-America combo guard from Barton Community College (Great Bend, Kansas), called to pledge his commitment to Alabama before the clock struck midnight on Monday – Grant's birthday.

Alabama was the choice over Georgia and TCU.

"I'm excited about my decision.," said Algie Key Tuesday. "I just felt Alabama was the right place for me. I felt comfortable being around the coaching staff and the players. I know Alabama and their tradition, the program, the academics – all those things played a big part in my decision."

Grant provided the icing on the Monday evening moment according to the Decatur, Ga., resident. "He (Grant) told me how much he really wanted me to be a part of the program," said Key, a versatile performer slated to play the point, shooting guard, and wing positions for the Tide. "I'm glad to be part of the family now. I'm going to come in and work as hard as I can to help Alabama reach that next goal which is a national championship. Roll Tide."

After conveying the news to Grant, Key called to inform his mother. "She was excited and thrilled for me. It was big."

He expects to be on the Tuscaloosa campus in June after graduating in May.

Craig Fletchall, Barton Community College head coach, commented on the recruitment of his star player. "From a coaching standpoint, it is really nice that Alabama's loyalty is being rewarded because they worked the hardest – Anthony Grant and Assistant John Brannen. Coach Grant flew out for two of our games on the day after games that he had which spoke volumes to Algie. They just did it the right way. They weren't high pressure and they showed a lot of class. He had a great visit this weekend. He (Key) said it was a great fit and really was impressed with the guys. There was a family atmosphere and they did everything as a group. He is a humble, quiet kid and I think he'll fit in real well with the players there."

Key averaged 18.1 points per game, 4.7 assists and 6.4 rebounds over a 67-game two-year career with the Cougars. Fletchall said, "He is the most consistent player I've ever had. Night in and night out he put up numbers. He is only the second player in school history to be a two-time NJCAA All-America. He never ever played selfish in the 54 wins over two years. He puts the team first. He is a winner."

A National Letter of Intent signing ceremony is scheduled for 11:30 AM on Wednesday at the Kirkman Activity Center located on the campus of Barton Community College.

Meanwhile, 'BAMA Magazine/ has confirmed Gill St. Bernard's School (Gladstone, N.J.) guard Jaren Sina is no longer considering Alabama. He originally signed with Northwestern in November 2012 but reopened his recruitment upon being released from the scholarship when a coaching change was made at the end of the season.

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