Southern Miss Signs Mississippi Mr. Basketball

April 23rd, 2007

HATTIESBURG, Miss. – Southern Miss men’s basketball coach Larry Eustachy announced today the signing of R.L. Horton (Jackson, Miss.) to a national letter of intent for the 2007-08 academic year.

Horton, a 6-foot, 175-pound guard, was named The Clarion Ledger’s Mr. Basketball for the state of Mississippi, after leading Lanier High School to its third consecutive Class 4A state title, as well as the MHSAA’s newly revived Grand Slam title en route to a No. 1 ranking in the Clarion-Ledger Super 10 Poll.

“We are excited about signing the best player from the state of Mississippi,” said Eustachy. “He has a tremendous mental makeup, which helped propelled his team to 108 wins, while losing just eight over the last three years. R.L. is a quality basketball player that is a solid play-making point guard who we are looking forward to joining our program.”

He averaged 27.7 points, including 31 in the 4A championship game, 4.6 assists, 4.1 rebounds and 1.7 steals a game as the Bulldogs finished 39-3, including 35 wins in their final 36 games for Coach Thomas Billups. Horton also garnered honorable-mention All-America honors by MaxPrep Sports.

He scored 18 points, including two key baskets late, to lead Mississippi to a 118-113 victory over Alabama in the all-star game between the two states earlier this spring at the Pelham (Ala.) Civic Center. Last summer, Horton was named the South Offensive MVP in the annual North-South All-Star game in Clinton.

As a junior, Horton averaged 24.6 points per contest as he earned all-star first team honors, as well being named the Metro Player of the Year.

Horton joins 6-foot-8 Brandon Cooks from Thibodaux, La. (Thibodaux HS/Genesis One Christian School), who signed during the spring signing period. In the fall, the Golden Eagles signed 6-foot-8 Maurice Bolden from Jackson, Miss. (Wingfield HS), as well as adding 7-foot Gustavo Lino from Sao Paulo, Brazil (Universidade Anhmebi Morumbi), who enrolled during the spring semester for the 2007-08 season.

The Golden Eagles were 20-11 last season and finished tied for fourth in Conference USA with a 9-7 record.

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