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Clemson Announces Three Men’s Basketball Signees

Nov. 9, 2000

Clemson, S.C. – Clemson Head Coach Larry Shyatt has announced the signing of three players to national letters of intent. The Clemson newcomers for the 2001-02 season include Sharrod Ford, a 6-9, 210-pound forward from Accokeek, MD, Olu Babalola, a 6-6, 245-pound forward from London England, and Chey Christie, a 6-4, 170-pound wing player from Biloxi, MS.

“We are excited to add these quality players to our program,” said Shyatt, who is in his third year as Clemson’s Head Coach. “We covered some important needs. It is a balanced class with one player at each area of the team. This gives us back-to back top 20 recruiting classes and gives us some depth as we look to the future.” Hoop Scoop currently ranks Clemson’s class as #18 in the country.

Christie is the brother of former Clemson starting forward Tony Christie. One of the top scorers in the state of South Carolina, he is currently at Biloxi High School in Biloxi, MS. He opened his senior season with a 30-point game on Wednesday night. Last year as a junior, Christie averaged 25.4 points and 7.1 rebounds per game. He shot 55 percent from the field and 78 percent from the foul line. He is ranked as the 37th best player in the nation according to Hoop Scoop.

“Christie is an athletic perimeter player who has outstanding scoring potential,” said Shyatt. “We are obviously familiar with his family and we feel he will be a terrific addition to our program. He gives us versatility on the perimeter.”

Babalola is a native of London, England, but is playing at St. Augustine Prep in Richland, NJ this year. Last year he averaged 18.8 points and 11.2 rebounds per game. He shot 58 percent from the field and averaged 2.8 rebounds a game. He was a third-team All-State selection in New Jersey last year.

“Olu was not as well known as some because he did not attend some of the bigger summer camps,” said Shyatt. We are glad he didn’t. He has the size and power of a football player, but he has more grace and shooting ability than people realize.”

Ford is an inside player at Hargrave Military academy in Chatham, VA. He played his previous four years at Gwynn Park High in Brandywine, MD. Last year he shot 58 percent from the field, averaged 15.8 points and 11.9 rebounds per game. He also blocked 6.6 shots per game, including a season high of 11 in one game. he was named a first-team All-Metro selection by the Washington Post.

“Ford brings size and athleticism to our frontline,” said Shyatt. “He is a shot blocker who can really run the floor. He is ranked among the top five inside players at the prep school level.”