PAC-10 and MWC Colleges Courting Cummard

<b>Lee Cummard</b> is a humble, unassuming young LDS athlete from Mesa, Arizona, who is hesitant to discuss the whirlwind of recruiting activity that surrounds him.

He admits a "couple of PAC-10 schools and a couple of Mountain West schools" have contacted him. Truth be told, Cummard has already received basketball scholarship offers from Arizona State and New Mexico and most PAC-10 MWC and other schools are hot on his heels – including BYU.

Utah's head coach Rick Magerus is also actively recruiting him with hand-written letters weekly. He has invited Cummard's Mesa High School basketball coach to assist him at the Utah basketball camp, bringing some of his players, including Cummard.

What are BYU's chances of landing Cummard? He confirmed he has been contacted by BYU coaches. "I've talked to Coach Wardenburg. He seems like a cool guy. I don't have any top schools right now, but I guess they (BYU) would be in my Top 5. I'm wide open right now."

Cummard confirmed he does not plan to drag the recruiting process out unnecessarily, adding his decision will be made "most likely before my high school season starts." watched Cummard in action during a recent tournament in Flagstaff, Arizona. Cummard and his Mesa high school teammates won all three games that day, qualifying them for the championship game the next day (Sunday). Cummard and several other teammates, however, did to play in the championship game because they do not "play ball on the Sabbath."

Cummard is a special player that makes the game look easy. At 6-7, he handles the ball like a guard; can shoot from beyond the arc; and is a difficult match-up down low because of his size and leaping ability. However, he is most impressive in the open floor where his height and athleticism make him an excellent finisher.

He also plays well at both ends of the floor. Cummard played outstanding man-to-man defense and gave opponents fits with his quickness and long arms. He used his quick hands to come up with several steals on defense, which resulted in breakaway dunks.

The only thing that will keep Cummard from putting up huge numbers his senior year will be the fact he plays on an extremely talented team and is very unselfish.

One particular play from the Flagstaff tournament exemplified his abilities: A opposing player drove the lane for what appeared to be an open lay up. Instead, Cummard came over from the weak side and literally grabbed the shot out of mid air with both hands.

His Mesa High teammates erupted in cheers and later gathered around the TBS cameraman after the game to watch the replay over and over again on the camera. Asked about the block, Cummard unassumingly remarked, "All I remember is the guy drove the lane and I jumped up and he threw the ball into my hands."

TBS also came away very impressed with the play of Cummard's teammate, Graham Hatch. A junior this year who is also LDS, Hatch is a very solid 6-4 with unlimited range on his jumper. He will likely be one of the top recruits from Arizona next season.

Thinking ahead to his college options, Cummard said the most important factors in his decision will be "tradition, academics, the coaching staff and the kind of people I will be around in the program."

Cummard said he has definite LDS mission plans and noted all the colleges he has talked to have told him they will support a mission. He graduates next May and plans to leave on his mission in early June.

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