Eagles Sign Junior College Forward

April 28, 2008

Six-foot-6 forward Chris Busch from Merritt College in California has signed a letter of intent to attend Eastern Washington University and play men's basketball for the Eagles next fall, EWU head coach Kirk Earlywine has announced.

Busch led the Bay Valley League in scoring with a 20.9 average per game and also averaged 8.9 rebounds while making 51 percent of his shots from the field. Merritt is a junior college located in his hometown of Oakland, Calif.

"He's a more face-the-basket type of player and is a very, very good shooter," said Earlywine. "He's strong and is a good athlete. But most of all he was very productive and has been a part of winning programs in both high school and junior college."

"He is also a player with high character and is a good student," he added. "He'll be a terrific fit here at Eastern Washington not only for our basketball program, but academically and socially as well."

Merritt finished 15-15 overall and 7-9 in the Bay Valley League his sophomore season. Busch had a game-high of 35 points during the 2007-08 season as he made 228-of-443 shots from the floor for 51 percent. He averaged 38 minutes a game for the Thunderbirds.

He earned first team All-Bay Valley League honors after ranking in the top 10 in scoring in California. He was also selected to the all-tournament team at the Quinn Henry Memorial Tourney hosted by Foothill College.

Busch redshirted the 2006-07 season after playing 10 games as a freshman at Santa Rosa Junior College in California. He averaged 16 points and eight rebounds per game in the 2005-06 season.

He is a 2005 graduate of San Leandro High School as he led the team to the second round of the 2005 California Interscholastic Federation Northern California Section playoffs. San Leandro finished his senior season 24-5 overall and 14-2 in the Hayward Area League for the school's first league title since 1989.

Busch averaged 21.4 points, 8.8 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.1 blocked shots per game as a senior while making 55 percent of his field goal attempts overall (105-of-190), 40 percent of his three-point attempts (32-of-81) ad 61 percent of his free throws (72-of-119).

He earned honorable mention All-State honors as a senior, as well as his junior season when he averaged 18.5 points and 7.2 rebounds per game to help his team to a 13-13 record. He earned fourth team All-NorCal and second team All-Area honors as a senior. Twice he earned all-league honors and was a four-year varsity player.

In his senior season, the San Francisco Chronicle selected him as its athlete of the week after he scored 38 points in his school's first win over Bishop O'Dowd in more than 10 years. He made 7-of-10 three-point attempts and 12-of-19 shots overall in the 73-60 victory. O'Dowd was ranked 18th at the time and was the defending NorCal Division III champion.

Busch was born April 23, 1987, in Oakland, Calif. He intends to major in business at Eastern. He is the son of Taras Busch and Michelle Baker. His nickname is "C-Busch."

White at Merritt, he played in the same junior college league as Contra Costa College, whose head basketball coach is former Eagle Miguel Johnson (1990-91 and 1991-92 seasons). The athletic director at Contra Costa is another former Eagle John Wade (1979-80 and 1980-81 seasons), who had a 36-96 record in five seasons as EWU's head coach from 1990-95.

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