Boone & Villanueva Invited to USA Trials

USA Basketball announced on Thursday that two of UConn's rising sophomores, fowards Josh Boone and Charlie Villanueva, are among 24 collegiate players invited to the trials for the 2004 USA Basketball World Championship For Young Men Qualifying Team.

Josh Boone and Charlie Villanueva were both named to the Big East All-Rookie Team following the regular season. Boone and Villanueva, added to the outstanding play og Ben Gordon and Emeka Okafor, both who have entered the NBA draft, as the Huskies won the 2004 NCAA Division I Men's Basketball National Championship.

Villanueva, a Brooklyn native, was the fourth highest scorer on Coach Jim Calhoun's squad with 8.9 points per game. He also pulled down 5.3 rebounds and averaged 1.5 blocks this past seasson.

Boone was second on this year's squad with 5.8 rebounds and 1.7 blocks per game. The native of the Baltimore-Washington suburbs averaged 5.9 points while shooting 55.4 percent from the floor.

UConn tied for the most invited players with Arizona, Illinois, Michigan State North Carolina and Wake Forest.

This year's trials are moving out of the U.S. Olympic Training Center (USOTC) in Colorado Springs, Colo. to the New Jersey Nets' practice facility in East Rutherford, N.J. over the July 16-18 weekend. The eventual 12-member squad will be finalized sometime prior to the final New Jersey practice on July 23.

The national team's schedule includes an exhibition game with Canada's Young Men's National Team on July 25 before heading to the 2004 FIBA Americas World Championship For Young Men Qualifying Tournament in Halifax, Nova Scotia from July 28 - 31. To be eligible for this team, a player must be a U.S. citizen and be 20-years-old or younger, i.e., born on or after Jan. 1, 1984.

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