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UND signs player from France

Marko Coudreau

During UND's time in the Big Sky Conference, the Fighting Hawks faced a number of players from other countries.

UND won't play in the Big Sky anymore, but the Hawks have gone the international route—signing 6-foot-9 center Marko Coudreau to a letter of intent.

UND coach Brian Jones announced the signing of Coudreau on Tuesday. The 17-year-old will have four years of eligibility for UND.

The addition of Coudreau fits a recruiting need for UND—size on the front line.

"Those have been the most difficult positions to fill—the No. 4 and No. 5 players," said Jones, referring to power forwards and centers. "He's still maturing but he can shoot it. He's a legitimate 6-9."

College programs are continually recruiting Europe and Australia as the game has grown internationally. During UND's time in the Big Sky, Eastern Washington and Montana both had success recruiting international players.

Coudreau is on the French national basketball radar as well.

Originally from Marseille, France, Coudreau has appeared in 25 international games for his country, including playing for France's Under 16 National squad in the 2016 European Championship. He is in line to play for the U18 team at the event this summer.

He played for CFBB Paris from 2015-18 and trained at the National Institute of Sport (INSEP), which is located just outside of Paris. INSEP has produced a handful of notable NBA players, including Tony Parker of the San Antonio Spurs.

In his latest action with the U18 Team at the Albert Schweitzer Tournament, Coudreau averaged 9.3 ppg, 3.6 rpg and 2.0 apg.

"He has competed at such a high level in France over the past few years that he comes to us battle-tested," said Jones. "His versatility and drive to become a very good player is another thing that really excites me about Marko. He has a bright future and those winning attributes will impact our program right away."

Jones said the European game has more and more players that can adapt quickly to U.S. basketball.

"The game has grown over there," he said. "They're getting good coaching early. And he fits our style of play."

Tuesday's signing is the second in the past week for UND as the Hawks signed 6-2 junior college guard Bentiu Panoam to a letter of intent. Panoam played last season at Northwest Kansas Tech.

Wayne Nelson
Nelson is the sports editor of the Herald
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