BREAKING: Bone lands JC scorer at guard

HOOPS COACHES TRAVEL far and wide in search of talent and the Cougars have gone all the way to Florida for their newest verbal commitment. He and the WSU staff formed a relationship over the past several months and then he fell in love with Wazzu and the Palouse a couple weeks ago. He's a 6-4 combo guard out of junior college and what he does best, is score.

Faisal Aden (6-4, 185), who averaged 20-plus ppg this past season and comes into this year a preseason second team junior college All-American, verbally committed to Ken Bone this morning, will sign with WSU on Wednesday and suit up for the Cougs in 2010.

Being on the Washington State campus two weeks ago and seeing what Wazzu was all about made for a quick decision.

"After my visit there, I fell in love with the place," said Aden.

The early signing period for basketball begins this Wednesday and 6-9, 205 forward Patrick Simon of Ephrata is expected to be faxing over his signed LOI to WSU then. With only one senior on the '09-'10 roster in Nikola Koprivica, it wasn't immediately clear how Aden would fit into the numbers for the 2010 class next fall. There's a maximum of 13 scholarships allowed by the NCAA and Simon would fill the spot vacated by Koprivica. Center Charlie Enquist, who walked on at WSU, was awarded a scholarship by Bone back in June but WSU's official release did note that the full ride was for the 2009-10 season. If he were to return to walk-on status after this season, that would open one up for Aden. And then, of course, a year where there are not comings and goings on a college basketball roster has become more unique than it is the norm these days.

ADEN SAID HE developed a strong connection over time with Cougar assistant Curtis Allen after Allen saw him play in a select junior college event.

"He's been recruiting me since then and we just built a relationship," said Aden.

Aden said he was getting interest from "all over", including Arizona, Florida, Oklahoma State, Miss State, Fresno State, Nebraska, Clemson and others. In addition to Washington State, he had offers from Oklahoma State, Fresno State, Mississippi State, Utah State and Houston.

"I'm looking forward to everything at WSU," said Aden. "I've always dreamed of playing in the Pac-10... Once Washington State (came into the picture) I was excited.

"Arizona is also in the Pac-10 but Washington State, with coach Allen, coach Bone, all the coaches, that won me over. I love those guys. I feel like I'll be comfortable playing with them and I feel like I'm going to be living my dream."

A NATIVE OF Somalia who came over to the States at age 8 and originally settled in San Diego, Aden has a shooter's touch from outside and can also put it on the floor. He last season averaged 20.4 points -- good for sixth most in the FCCAA/NJCAA Region VIII.

Aden shot 36.4 percent from 3-point range, hitting 19 of 51 attempts, averaged 2.1 steals per game and grabbed 3.5 rebounds.

"The WSU coaching staff were great people that I could see myself around, I was excited about the whole thing there," said Aden. "I wanted to commit right after the visit but my mom told me to take a few days because I was high on the visit. So I took a few days to think about it, and I decided that's where I want to be so I made the verbal commitment this morning."

BONE AT WSU is looking to build an offense where the guards have a decided impact. That was a topic of much discussion during his recruitment, Aden said.

"They want me to come in and score," said Aden. "That's what I have a reputation for and they like my ability (there). They said I fit very well with their system -- and that's what their system is for, it's guard oriented and that's what they want to run. And in order to be successful at it, they need the right guards."

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