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June 9, 2006The Arizona Magic Blue travel team had a very strong spring campaign on the AAU club circuit, finishing with a 23-3 overall record. A major reason for the success of the team was the inside play of Mesquite High School 2006 graduate Gavin Edwards. An inspirational story, Edwards went from limited playing time as a junior on his high school team, to a spring verbal committment to the University of Connecticut a year later. While it looked as if Edwards would attend prep school for a year first, Edwards now is headed to UCONN this fall.
It just keeps getting better and better for Gavin Edwards and his family. First Edwards verbals to one of the nation's premier basketball programs in America, and now Edwards will be headed to play for the Huskies next fall.
Edwards, thought to attend prep school next fall at Brewster Academy, is now officially a UCONN Huskie. Edwards signed a national letter of intent with the Huskies recently after raising his grade point average (GPA), during his final spring semester at Mesquite HS. At the time Edwards gave his verbal commitment to UCONN early in the spring, there was still some work left to do in the classroom. Also, the UCONN coaching staff was not sure about an available scholarship for Edwards for the 2006 fall semester, since they were waiting on a decision by current player Josh Boone to decide whether or not to leave for the NBA.
Since then, Boone has hired an agent and will stay in the 2006 NBA Draft, now giving a scholarship for the fall semester for Edwards. This week, Edwards flew to Storrs, Connecticut, on his first official visit to the school campus.
"I really liked it," said Gavin Edwards. "The facilities were great, and I had a chance to spend a lot of time with the coaching staff."
Edwards is now set to attend summer school classes at UCONN this July. In order to do so, Edwards will move to Storrs, Connecticut, this July, beginning his college career with the Huskies.
"I am very excited to get going," said Edwards.
As a member of UCONN's 2006 recruiting class, Edwards is part of the nation's 4th best overall recruiting class in America by RivalsHoops.com. On UCONN's roster next year, Edwards will be joined by 6-foot-9 Stanley Robinson, 6-foot-7 Curtis Kelly, 6-foot-3 Jerome Dyson, 7-foot-2 HaSheem Thabeet, 6-foot Doug Wiggins, 6-foot-11 Jonathan Mandeldove and 6-foot7 Ben Eaves.
As a junior, Edwards saw very limited action on Mesquite's varsity team, but over the summer of 2005, Edwards grew another inch and a half, and matured and got stronger physically, growing into his body. As a senior this past high school season, Edwards averaged an impressive 17.5 points per/game to go along with 8.5 rebounds and 3.3 blocks. Edwards was awarded the Co-Region Player of the Year this season in the Fiesta Region, while leading Mesquite HS to a 21-6 record on the season.
What was most impressive about Edwards' accomplishments this season was that he broke Mesquite's school career shot block record in one season, compiling more than 100 blocket shots in one high school season.
"I want to let him enjoy this time," said Gavin's father, Earl Edwards, a former NFL player. "He really worked hard to get to this point, so he deserves it. We are really appreciative of Anthony Ray for this. The (UCONN) coaching staff told us that they would have never known of Gavin if not for their relationship with Anthony."
Rivals.com Anlysis: Edwards has a tremendous upside, which is what has made him so intriguing to high major division-I schools. Standing close to 6-foot-10 in heigth, Edwards is still growing and maturing physically. He possesses very good coordination, as a result of playing soccer and golf for much of his childhood. He runs the floor as well as any low post player in the country and also has a very soft touch on his shot, which he can shoot well out to three-point distance. As he continues to get stronger physically, Edwards' future could be limitless.