Bearcats Nab 2004 Guard

In the ever-changing world of college basketball, early commitments are becoming more and more the norm than the exception. Bob Huggins and the Bearcats jumped on the early commitment train, taking a verbal from a member of the Class of 2004.

Butler Picks Cincinnati

Bob Huggins gets it done. Rumors about the NBA? Whispers about West Virginia? It doesn't matter. On Wednesday, Huggins and the Bearcats received a commitment from a lifelong Bearcat fan that just happens to be a high school sophomore.

Lima (OH) Shawnee sophomore guard Jamar Butler is headed to Cincinnati in the fall of 2004.

"He's pretty good," said Shawnee coach Jeff Heistan. "(Bob) Huggins said he's the second best player (in Ohio) behind LeBron James. That's what he said to me today."

Well, Butler appears to have done little to disprove that statement. He already had 1,000 career points and his high school coach says he believes his scorer is only the second player in Ohio history to eclipse the 1,000-point mark. Butler, according to Heistan, looked at Xavier, Ohio State, Dayton and Purdue.

"His basic interest was that he didn't want to leave Ohio," Heistan said. Butler also is in a situation that allows for an early recruitment. "His father was an assistant coach and that really opened an avenue for people to communicate with him."

Butler averaged 19.4 points a game as a freshman. He's getting 30 a night this season.

"He just always wanted to go to Cincinnati from Day One. He gave some other schools a shot but he always wanted to go to Cincinnati."

NOTE: Butler isn't the only youngster in-state that Cincinnati has offered. In fact, there is a standing offer to Troy power forward Matt Terwilliger. AND, you can bet they'd like to have Brooks Hall's younger brother who is a freshman at Troy.

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