Patriot League Pick for Jones

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>With the calendar turning to August on Friday, one
of the top basketball prospects in Virginia from the Class of 2015 decided it
was time to end his recruitment. Radford
High's Nate Jones, a 6-foot-4 swingman
that was chosen as the Group 1A State Player of the Year by,
gave a verbal commitment to Head Coach Dave
Paulsen and the Bucknell
style='mso-bidi-font-weight:normal'> Bison out of the Patriot League.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>For a long time, Jones was rumored to be a shoe-in to go
to Radford University since his father, Mike
Jones, serves as Head Coach of the Highlanders.
style=> Instead, he opted to head out-of-state with
several factors weighing into his decision.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"I chose Bucknell because I
was very comfortable with the coaching staff.
They did a great job of giving me all the info I needed on the program
and the school itself. They have a
tradition of winning with great fan support and a great atmosphere to play in,"
Jones told

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"They were really excited to hear the news when I
committed. They're going to use me as
more of a '3' than a '2' just because of size.
I think I will fit in well with how they play."

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>Dad gave his full support of the choice as well.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"He thought it was a good fit for me and he really respects
what they do at Bucknell," Nate added.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>Jones was also recruited by American, Army, Lafayette,
New Hampshire and Wofford among others.
His offer sheet might've approached double-digits if not for an ankle
sprain in July while playing on the AAU circuit with Team Richmond.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>After winning a state title as a sophomore, Jones made
it a priority before his junior campaign to get stronger so that it would allow
him to get to the basket and finish with more ease.
style=> His role increased significantly for the
Bobcats, who posted a 26-3 overall record and won the Group 1A-West Region
Tournament. Even in the team's 49-44
loss to Altavista in the State Championship, he was a
force with 24 points on 10-of-15 shooting and recorded a game-high 10 rebounds.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>For his junior season, Jones averaged 17.3 points, 5.8
rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.9 steals per game while shooting 45.1% from the
field (188-of-417), over 40% from three-point range with 30 makes beyond the
arc and committed only 40 turnovers in 29 games.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>Although the personal accolades came in for Jones with
State Player of the Year, Western Gate Conference 45 Player of the Year, First
Team All-State and First Team All-Region, he values winning over everything

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"They are getting a player who is team first and will
play hard every possession," Jones noted.
"I feel I'll bring them a player that will do a little bit of everything
on the court."

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>He's someone that epitomizes student-athlete, too.
style=> In addition to his skills on the basketball
court, Jones excels in the classroom by maintaining a 4.0 GPA.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>Last season, Bucknell
finished with a record of 16-14 overall.
That put them just four wins shy of their seventh 20-win season in the
past decade. They've been to the NCAA
Tournament four times since 2005, beating Kansas nine years ago and Arkansas in

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>With his college commitment out of the way, Jones can
turn his attention to his senior season.
Coach Rick Cormany
style='font-weight:normal'>'s squad has captured three state titles
since 2009, but they have to replace second-leading scorer
normal'>Isaiah Phillips, who is headed to Division II Urbana University in
Ohio. Having Jones and rising junior
guard Marcus Finley, a First Team
All-Conference performer as a sophomore, back is a good start point.

"Verdana","sans-serif"'>"It's a huge relief," Jones admitted. "I've always
planned on deciding before the season just so I can play my last year without
having to worry about that. My goals are
to win as many games as possible and let things go from there.
style=> I definitely want to end my last year
differently from the previous one."


href="">See our Video
Interview with Nate Jones from the Hoop Group Southern Jam Fest ***


115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";text-decoration:none;text-underline:
none'>Matthew Hatfield
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'>
serves as State Basketball Analyst for
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'>, part of the
Network. Check out
text-decoration:none;text-underline:none'>Hatfield's Twitter page
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'> for more sports related updates,
and you can also read his work in the
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";
text-decoration:none;text-underline:none'>Suffolk News Herald
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'>.
To contact Matthew, please e-mail
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'>, and don't forget to listen to him
every Saturday at 10AM on
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";text-decoration:none;text-underline:
none'>ESPN Radio 94.1
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'>,
plus watch him on the
115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif";text-decoration:none;text-underline:
none'>Cox 11 Sports Report
style='font-size:12.0pt;line-height:115%;font-family:"Times New Roman","serif"'>.

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