Kieron Achara Signs with UPIM Bologna

PITTSBURGH - Former Duquesne University forward/center Kieron Achara (Stirling, Scotland / Maine Central Institute / British National Team) has signed a one-year contract with a two-year option to play basketball for UPIM Bologna it was announced Wednesday.

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Kieron Achara joins 2007-08 Duquesne teammates Reggie Jackson (Hogansville, Ga./Southern Union College) and Shawn James (Brooklyn, N.Y./Notre Dame Prep) who have also signed contracts with overseas professional teams this summer.

Achara, who had been playing for the British National Team since early August, was forced to give up his spot on that squad to join UPIM Bologna (Fortitudo Pallacanestro Bologna) which opens camp on Friday.

"This is a very good situation for me," said Achara. "The team has invested a lot in me as a player. It is a good club in a very strong league. I'm looking forward to getting started."

UPIM Bologna competes in the Serie A - known as the top professional league in Italy.

Achara finished his career ranked 19th on Duquesne's all-time scoring list with 1,240 career points and second in career blocked shots with 185. He tied for second-most games played in school history with 115.

Jackson (right), who played in 58 of a possible 59 games in two seasons at Duquesne, signed with the Newcastle Eagles of the top-tier British Basketball League earlier this month. Jackson, who completed his undergraduate degree just prior to signing, finished the `08 season with his scoring average at the highest of any point in his college career at 9.8 ppg.

Newcastle opens its season on September 26.

James (left), who chose to forego his senior season, signed a two-year deal to play for Bnei-Hasharon of the Israeli Basketball Super League in June. James set a Duquesne single-season record for blocked shots with 111 in his only season as a Duke. The 6-10 forward/center, who played two years at Northeastern prior to transferring, finished his career with 443 blocked shots in 83 career games. James' blocked shot total is the seventh-highest in NCAA Division I history.


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