Ex-Gopher signee James Davis Inks with Lamar

James Davis, a 7-foot center who signed with Minnesota in the early signing period last year before running into legal problems, has signed with Lamar.

James Davis ranked 18th in the country in scoring at 21.2 points per game and 12th in the country in rebounding at 12.2 rpg as a sophomore. He also shot 67.9 percent from the field. He was named first-team NJCAA All-America and first-team all-region.

Davis had told GoldenSports.Net last summer that he was still loyal to the Gophers. However, Minnesota and other schools are taking a wait-and-see attitude with the former Minneapolis North center to ensure that he takes care of his academics and stays away from off-the-court incidents. There are also questions whether he will be able to receive his degree. Mentor Ricky Williams said that should not be a problem for Davis.

"He might have to take a math class, possibly on-line, but he should get his degree."

Williams said that despite interest from the NBA, he would prefer that James spends at least one year in college.

Davis committed to Minnesota after visiting the campus last September. He left Garden City (KS) CC after an altercation with Broncbuster teammate B.J. Walker.

Davis had averaged 11.7 points, 9.5 rebounds and 1.7 blocked shots per game as a freshman for the Broncbusters in 2003-04. He left Garden City and attended Los Angeles Southwest (CA) CC for a week before returning to Garden City.

Davis did not play as a high school junior, but emerged as one of Minnesota's top seniors. Davis helped lead the Polars to the Minnesota Class AAAA state championship as he averaged 14 points and 14 rebounds.

Davis, who was expected to help fill the void left by graduating senior Jeff Hagen, was arrested March 10, 2005 for carrying a gun without a permit. Head coach Dan Monson said he met with Davis and concluded that "he needs next year to meet his academic requirements and sort through his personal affairs."

Davis had weapons charges against him dismissed in Hennepin County District Court. Judge John Q. McShane ruled that police had no probable cause for the vehicle stop and search that resulted in Davis being charged with a gross misdemeanor.

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