Braun Lands Big Time Commit

Rice landed a huge basketball commit today when 3 Star Point Guard Tamir Jackson called Coach Ben Braun with some good news...

I just got off the phone with Newark, New Jersey Point Guard Tamir Jackson, who confirmed that he committed to play basketball for Coach Ben Braun's Rice Owls today.

The St. Benedict Prep star had this to say about his committment.

"I called Coach Braun and committed to Rice today. He was real excited and told me how glad he was to be able to build the program with guys like me. He said now he could go out and find a big man to play with me at Rice."

Among the possibilities for one of those "big men" is Arsalan Kazemi, a 4-Star Power Forward who attends The Patterson School in Patterson, North Carolina. Chris Eversley from Chicago will visit Rice this weekend. He's a 6-5 Small Forward whose stock is on the rise.

Looking for backcourt help, Braun found it in Jackson. He's currently 6-2 and 182 pounds and is a solid floor leader. He's an explosive player that can create off the dribble to make his own shot. Tamir's been described as a player that "makes everyone on the floor a better player because he makes such good decisions."

Jackson's really lit up the summer circuit. He was a multiple Hoop Group Elite Camp All-Star and and 5-Star Camp All-Star. He was also All Tournament at the Southern Invitational, Providence Jam Fest and Reebok Summer Classic East. He was Co-MVP of the Charlie Weber Tournament; and MVP of the Eddie Griffin Challenge.

I asked Tamir why he chose to join the building efforts here at Rice.

"It was a combination of a lot of things - I loved the academics of course, I'll get to play right away, and I really liked Coach Braun. I think he's the type of coach I'll learn from and will enjoy playing for. Rice a program on the rise, and the new arena will be really nice too."

Braun beat out schools from some major conferences for Jackson's pledge. Also in the running for the New Jersey guard was South Carolina, Virginia Tech, Rhode Island, and Penn.

Jackson was originally committed to UAB, but opened recruiting up at the end of the summer. He plans to sign with the Owls during the early signing period, which begins November 12, 2008.

Rice will make its return to campus on November 15, when the Owls are scheduled play Portland State in the first game at newly remodeled Tudor Fieldhouse.

Way to go Coach Braun - and welcome to Rice, Tamir!

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