ASU Basketball: Making an Impact in the NCAA and NBA

LOS ANGELES CA - FEBRUARY 18: James Harden #13 of the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Sophomore Team dunks the ball in the second half during the T-Mobile Rookie Challenge and Youth Jam at Staples Center on February 18 2011 in Los Angeles California. (Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

It may only be April, but the ASU basketball program is making noise in both the NCAA and NBA ranks.

The Sun Devils bolstered their 2011 recruiting class with a few new signees over the weekend and also enjoyed the NBA Playoffs where four former Sun Devils are actively participating and a fifth, Jeff Pendergraph, a member of the Portland Trail Blazers, is watching from the sidelines with a torn ACL.

While the Sun Devils are already excited about their recruiting class because of four star recruit Jahii Carson, they will now have some star-power as Evan Gordon, the younger brother of Clippers guard Eric Gordon, has signed with ASU. Gordon will be transferring from Liberty so he will have to sit out the upcoming season, but having an extra season of practice can only help Gordon and the Sun Devils in the future.

Last season, while playing at Liberty, Gordon averaged just over 14 points per game, and shot just under 34 percent from beyond the arc.

ASU also added some size over the weekend when Jonathan Gilling, a 6-foot-8 forward from Denmark signed with the Sun Devils.

Looking forward to the 2011-2012 season is definitely exciting, but it is just as fun to look at former Sun Devils who are currently excelling in the NBA Playoffs.

James Harden, Lionel Hollins, Eddie House, and Ike Diogu are all representing ASU in the playoffs.

Of the four, Harden and Hollins are the only two with significant roles, but House may be the Sun Devil who goes the deepest in the playoffs as he is a member of the very-talented Miami Heat.

Not only did Hollins have his number retired by ASU and hung to the rafters at Wells Fargo Arena earlier this year, but he also led the Memphis Grizzlies to their first ever playoff victory. Hollins has done a great job coaching the Grizzlies this season and is sure to make Sun Devils proud as his career continues.

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