2010 Native of Canada Will Be Big In Texas

Texas has landed its share of stars and Rick Barnes knows what to do with the talent. On Tuesday, the Longhorns scored a big time pledge from sophomore Tristan Thompson.

Rick Barnes has had some great ones during his time in Austin. He's had T.J. Ford, Lamarcus Aldridge and Kevin Durant. D.J. Augustin is a star too.

The next star in the Barnes' stable of players will be Tristan Thompson, a 6-foot-8 power forward with unlimited potential to become a combo forward and evolve into a serious threat.

Thompson, a native of Canada, runs with the Grassroots Canada program in the spring and summer. His coach, Ro Russell, said Thompson was sold on the Horns a long time ago.

"He basically told me that he knows where he wants to go to college," Russell said. "He wanted to focus on his academics and be the best he can be."

The Horns have a lot to sell these days, namely one Kevin Durant. "He said he was always a big Kevin Durant fan," Russell said. "The exposure that Kevin gave Texas his freshman year; Tristan watched the games and really liked the style of play. That was the first thing that drew him to Texas."

Russell said Texas actively pushed the Durant comparison on Thompson. The Horns indicated they saw similar qualities in the sophomore.

"They showed film of Kevin playing the four on defense but on offense they let him bring it up, shoot it and let him post up. Tristan has two more years to work on his skills and they want him to come in as that kind of player like Kevin. Hurley is going to work him to develop his skills."

Thompson's in a tremendous situation. All-Americans Samardo Samuels (senior) and Greg Echenique (junior) provide him with daily competition. Noted workers, Samuels and Echenique have to rub off on Thompson. Plus, being around the pair forced him to expand his skill set even more.

Thompson is rated the No. 5 prospect in the Class of 2010 by Scout.com.

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