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Jim Ecker, President & Editor

Linn-Mar High School - Marion, Iowa

No reason to wait, Paige commits to UNC

MINNEAPOLIS -- Marcus Paige has been a big fan of the North Carolina basketball program since he was in the second grade, barely big enough to dribble a ball.

Now his dream of playing for the famed Tar Heels will come true.

Paige, a junior at Linn-Mar, announced Saturday he's accepted a scholarship offer from North Carolina Coach Roy Williams and will join the Tar Heels for the 2012-13 school year.

"It's exciting," he said after playing in the Timberwolves Shootout at the Target Center. "There's not really a whole lot of words to describe it, especially when you know it's a dream you've had as a kid. It's just a great feeling."

Ellis Paige, the point guard's father, summed up the family's feelings in one word. "Elated," he said.

Paige had planned to wait until after the 2010-11 high school season to narrow his list of colleges, take more visits and make a decision, but he saw no reason to wait any longer.

"That was the plan, but I always said if something feels right I'm not going to drag it out for no reason," he said. "Things fell into place and it felt right. There's no need to wait."

Last Updated on Sunday, 09 January 2011 00:20



Offers were there early for Paige

MINNEAPOLIS -- Marcus Paige was just 14 years old, not yet in high school, when college basketball coaches began offering him full scholarships to attend their schools.

The first offer came from Ben Jacobson, the head coach at the University of Northern Iowa. The very next day, then-Iowa State coach Greg McDermott invited Paige to become a Cyclone.

This was during the summer of 2007, shortly after Paige had graduated from the eighth grade. College was still five years away, yet Jacobson and McDermott were willing to bet that the skinny, precocious point would grow into someone special.

They were right, but Roy Williams and the University of North Carolina won the grand prize. Paige committed to the Tar Heels on Thursday and made the announcement Saturday night before playing for Linn-Mar at the Timberwolves Shootout.

Last Updated on Sunday, 09 January 2011 21:01



Mahmens casts lot with DII champs

Linn-Mar senior Mac Mahmens has accepted a scholarship to play football at the University of Minnesota-Duluth, which won the NCAA Division II national title this past season with a 15-0 record.

Mahmens visited Minnesota-Duluth this weekend, was offered a scholarship Sunday morning and accepted Sunday afternoon. Certain of his decision, he called one of Duluth's assistant coaches with the news while driving back to Iowa with his father.

"I knew that's the place for me," Mahmens told the Metro Sports Report. "It's awesome up there."

Mahmens is a 6-foot-2, 285-pound lineman who played offensive guard, defensive tackle and defensive end for Linn-Mar this past season. He said Minnesota-Duluth plans to put him in the middle of the offensive line at center, which is where he played for Linn-Mar in 2009.

Last Updated on Sunday, 09 January 2011 20:43



Kiah Stokes chooses UConn

MARION — Kiah Stokes is headed for the mecca of women’s college basketball.

Stokes, the 6-foot-3 senior center for the Linn-Mar Lions, announced Thursday afternoon at a press conference that she’s accepted a scholarship to play basketball at the University of Connecticut next year.

Stokes visited Connecticut, Iowa, Tennessee, Georgia and Maryland before making her decision. She said the process was exciting, overwhelming and stressful at times.The Huskies, coached by Geno Auriemma, have won the last two NCAA titles and have won seven national championships since 1995.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 05 January 2011 19:15



Garman commits to North Dakota

Linn-Mar tailback Jer Garman said Wednesday he has committed to play football at the University of North Dakota next season.

Garman was honored as the 2010 Metro Player of the Year after rushing for 1,601 yards and scoring 29 touchdowns for the Lions.

North Dakota assistant coach Josh Kotelnicki visited Garman Tuesday night. They played ping-pong and Garman offered Kotelnicki a deal, based on the outcome of their match.

"I played a little trick on him," Garman said. "I told him if you win, I'll commit to North Dakota. And if I win, I'll commit to North Dakota.

Last Updated on Saturday, 15 January 2011 01:48



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