FGCU Basketball Signs Two More Recruits
Things are looking up these days – literally – at Florida Gulf Coast University. Men’s basketball coach Dave Balza announced the addition of two big men to his roster. Michael Anderson, a 6’8 center, and Andy French, a 6’6 forward, have announced their intentions to join the basketball program at FGCU for the coming school year.
French, who hails from Tampa, brings collegiate playing experience and will be FGCU’s only senior. He will redshirt this coming year and have one year to play. French was a 2nd team All-Conference performer at Hillsboro Community College, where he averaged 14 points and 7 rebounds per game. He matriculated to Palm Beach Atlantic College, an NAIA program, for his junior year and saw just 13 minutes of action per game. Intrigued with the opportunity to be a leader on a young team, have the potential of more playing time, and be the first ever basketball player to graduate from FGCU, French opted to make the move.
French is a 1998 graduate of Tampa Catholic High School. As a senior, he averaged 17 points per game and was named 2nd Team All-Area and Honorable Mention All-State. As a junior, French was MVP of the State Final Four. In addition, he received All-Area honors in football.
“Andy is a good athlete,” stated Coach Balza. “He fits our style of play and he’s mature. I look at the fact that he will be a senior as a positive, because it helps to fill out our classes. He’s another good young man who wants to be a part of what we are building. Andy’s so excited that he has already moved here!”
Anderson is a 2000 graduate of Celebration High School, which is located just outside of Orlando. An excellent student with over a 3.8 gpa, Anderson spent this past year at Stetson University, pursuing a degree in business. He missed basketball, though, and winning an intramural championship did not satisfy his desire to play again. When Balza afforded him the opportunity to be a part of his fledgling program, Anderson jumped at the opportunity.
Anderson is actually a homegrown product, having been born in Lee County and growing up in Cape Coral. He and his parents, Rick and Barbara Anderson, moved to the brand new town of Celebration in 1997. Starting a basketball program is nothing new to Anderson, as Celebration High School started its basketball program while he was there. As a senior, Anderson averaged 5 points and 4.5 rebounds. He was much more impressive on the defensive end, though, where he led the county in blocked shots.
Coach Balza was intrigued with Anderson’s potential. “He’s still new to the game, but he has a lot of tools. He’s a good athlete and a very mobile defender, with excellent timing skills. He’s a very bright and hard working young man. With a year of work on refining his skills, he’ll be an even better player by the time we open up play next fall.”
Anderson is truly excited about returning to southwest Florida. “I can’t wait to tip off in 2002 in front of my true home town crowd,” commented Anderson.
For more information, contact Balza at (941) 590-7039 or firstname.lastname@example.org.