Thursday, Aug. 14, 2008 | 3:38 p.m.
Mojave High guard Anthony Marshall made a verbal commitment to UNLV basketball coach Lon Kruger on Thursday afternoon.
The versatile 6-foot-3, 185-pound combination guard with the 35-inch vertical leap said he chose the Rebels over UCLA, Stanford, Baylor, San Diego State and Colorado State.
“After I heard what he had to say, I said, ‘I’m ready,’ ” Marshall said. “He told me how he saw me fitting into the program, that there are impact players and how we could work together, and about the school and academics.
“I just felt comfortable that it’s the right choice.”
Marshall met with Kruger in his office at UNLV at 2:30 p.m. An hour later, Marshall said he will celebrate by working out on his own later Thursday afternoon.
"I feel relieved," he said. "There's a lot of pressure off me. At the same time, I'm excited and ready to get back into the gym already. I'll work out, then hang out with my family."
Kruger cannot comment about a prospect until he signs a national letter of intent.
Marshall averaged 19 points, 9 rebounds and 8 assists at Mojave as a junior in 2007-08. The recruiting site Rivals.com lists Marshall as the No. 67 prospect in the country for the Class of 2009.
He nabbed the final scholarship that Kruger had available for that class, which includes Findlay Prep center Carlos Lopez, Woodland Hills (Calif.) Taft Union guard Justin Hawkins, Kentucky transfer Derrick Jasper and UCLA transfer Chace Stanback.
Marshall is close to Hawkins and has talked with his future UNLV teammate frequently over the past few months. They befriended each other at a camp when they were freshmen.
“We’ve had a tight relationship since then, but we didn’t know it would be like this,” Marshall said. “I think we have a chance to make a lot of noise.”
Stanback committed to UNLV at the end of his visit to Las Vegas last Saturday.
“The past couple of days I’ve really been thinking, and I felt it was time to make my decision,” Marshall said. “It’s good staying in Las Vegas, where I grew up. It’ll be good to be the hometown kid and help my city.”
That became more of a challenge after the recent adidas Super 64 prep tournament in Las Vegas, when Marshall shined and elite Division-I coaches flocked to see him.
"There were a lot of calls after that tournament," Marshall said. "There were a lot of coaches saying I could do a lot of stuff, that I could be an asset to their programs. It was pretty exciting. There were too many calls to count."
In the end, he stuck with the hometown program on the rise.
“I’ll be a great teammate,” Marshall said. “A versatile guy who can do numerous things. I’m not one-dimensional. And I’m a coachable player who listens, a leader.”
Anthony Brown, Marshall’s coach on the Las Vegas Prospects traveling team, said he was happy for Marshall.
“One kid down, so many more to go,” Brown said. “I’m very glad and I’ll celebrate the moment, then I’ll get back to work.”