Aug. 5, 2010
MANHATTAN, Kan. – Rising junior Jamar Samuels and sophomore Nick Russell will participate in a nine-day tour of France and Switzerland with the East Coast All-Stars beginning today.
The pair, along with eight other collegiate players, will spend nine days traveling through Europe beginning on Friday, August 6 in Geneva, Switzerland and ending Sunday, August 15 in Paris, France. The group will spend time on sight-seeing tours, including viewing such national landmarks as the Eiffel Tower, Champs-Elysees, Louvre Museum and Notre Dame Cathedral, while playing five games against various European squads. Samuels and Russell are the second pair of Wildcats to make a trip on the All-Star Tour, following Jacob Pullen and Dominique Sutton, who went undefeated during their tour of Austria and the Czech Republic last summer.
The East Coast All-Stars, in conjunction with Anthony Travel, Inc., was created by Guy Rancourt, the head coach at Division II Lycoming College in Williamsport, Pa., in the summer of 2006. The team began a two-day training camp today in New York City and will leave for Geneva on Friday evening. The All-Stars are scheduled to begin playing games on Sunday, August 8 and continuing on August 9, 11, 12 and 14.
In addition to Samuels and Russell, the All-Stars include Arkansas junior guard Jeff Peterson, Harvard junior forward Keith Wright, Lycoming seniors Will Kelly and Sebastian Sabella, Notre Dame junior forward Scott Martin, Purdue junior guard Lewis Jackson and Stony Brook juniors Tommy Brenton and Bryan Dougher. The group will be coached by Rancourt and Mike Jones, an assistant coach at DeMatha High School.
Samuels and Russell are two of nine returning lettermen for Kansas State in 2010-11. The duo helped the Wildcats to one of their greatest seasons ever last season, as the squad racked up a school-record 29 wins en route to their first trip to the Elite Eight since 1988.
The Big 12’s Sixth Man Award winner, Samuels averaged 11.0 points on 53.9 percent shooting as a sophomore with averages of 4.9 rebounds and 1.2 assists in 36 games. He ranked among the Top 5 in nine categories, including second in field goal percentage and free throws attempted, third in rebounding, 3-point field goals and free throws and fourth in scoring. He scored in double-digits 25 times, including a season-high 27-point effort in the win over Oklahoma State in the quarterfinals of the Big 12 Championship on March 11. He also totaled three double-doubles, including a memorable 20-point, 12-rebound performance in the win over No. 1 Texas on Jan. 18.
Russell saw action in 21 games as a true freshman last season, averaging 1.5 points and 1.0 rebounds per outing. He scored in 10 games, including a season-high seven points against Loyola Chicago on Nov. 13.
More information about the tour can be found at http://www.guyrancourt.com/eastcoast.htm.