Ex-Gopher Bryce Webster Visits Utah State

Bryce Webster, a 6-9, 240-pound center from Mendota Heights (MN) St. Thomas Academy who left the Minnesota basketball team this summer, visited Utah State this past weekend. Webster is currently at Irvine Valley (CA) CC and will play for the Lasers this season. They finished 16-14 overall last year and 5-7 in Orange Empire Conference play.

Bryce Webster averaged 1.2 points and 1.7 rebounds per game in 9.3 minutes of play for the Gophers as they finished 9-22 this past season. He asked to be released from his scholarship and head coach Tubby Smith announced in August he has granted Webster's request to be released from his scholarship.

Webster visited Utah State this past weekend, according to Irvine Valley head coach Jerry Hernandez. Webster has a relationship with Utah State assistant coach James Ware, who was the director of operations at Minnesota and a former AAU coach with Howard Pulley, who had coached Webster.

"He really enjoyed it. He really liked it. He just was not ready to commit," Hernandez said. "Utah State was the reason that we got him. Most of the national schools could not get a player in that late, but we could still get guys in. He is a good kid and a good student. We hope that he goes to Utah State."

Webster shot 41.9% from the field and 64.3% from the line. He started seven of 28 games last year and averaged 9.3 minutes per game. In hindsight, Webster would likely have been better served redshirting last season and working on his strength and acclimating himself as a freshman.

Webster was considered the top big man in the state of Minnesota as a senior and attended the NBA Players Association Camp and the Nike All-American Camp for two straight years.

Webster was considering Boston College, Marquette, Minnesota and Notre Dame before committing to Minnesota in August of 2005.

Webster was named to the 2005 and 2006 Associated Press All-State First Team and was the 2006 Minneapolis Star Tribune Metro Player of the Year. He led his team to the 2006 State Tournament and was named to the 2005 and 2006 Star Tribune All-Metro First Team. Webster was chosen to the All-Classic Suburban Conference First Team in 2004, 2005 and 2006.

Webster averaged 21.6 points, 11.5 rebounds and 3.5 blocks as a senior and 21.8 points and 12.1 rebounds as a junior. He averaged 18.5 points and 10.0 rebounds as a sophomore.

Webster was the first commitment for Minnesota for the 2006-07 season.

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