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June 28, 2013

Franklin goes to Grizzlies in second round

SAN DIEGO - Former San Diego State men's basketball two-time All-American Jamaal Franklin was taken in the second round with the 41st pick overall by the Memphis Grizzlies in the 2013 NBA Draft Thursday night in Brooklyn, N.Y. Franklin is the second Aztec in the last three seasons to be selected in the draft.

A native of Hawthorne, Calif., Franklin is the first Aztec since Kawhi Leonard in 2011 to be taken in the NBA Draft and 19th overall. The 2012 Mountain West Player of the Year is the third Aztec to be drafted under head coach Steve Fisher (Randy Holcomb in 2002 and Leonard) and the 26th NBA draft pick Fisher has tutored in his coaching career.

Franklin joins a Memphis team that posted a 56-26 record, tied for fourth-best in the West, and advanced to the Western Conference Finals this past season before ultimately losing to Leonard's San Antonio Spurs.

Franklin left San Diego State after a junior season in which the he led the team in scoring (17.0), rebounding (9.5), assists (3.3) and steals (1.6), making him the only player in America to lead his squad in all four per-game categories. The all-MW first-team performer helped the Aztecs post a 23-11 record and advance to the third round of the NCAA tournament for the second time in three years.

Over his three-season career on Montezuma Mesa, Franklin averaged 13.6 points and 7.0 rebounds in 87 games and helped SDSU advance to the NCAA tournament all three years, including the Aztecs' 34-3, Sweet 16 campaign in 2010-11. This past year, Franklin became 28th player in program history to score at least 1,000 points in a career (1,181) after averaging just 2.9 points his freshman year. In fact, he was named the CBSSports.com Most Improved Player after putting up 2.9 points and 1.9 rebounds as a true freshman to his 17.4, 7.9 numbers the next year as a sophomore.

In addition to earning the most improved award, Franklin, who will join former Aztecs Leonard and Malcolm Thomas in the NBA, finished his career as a two-time all-MW first-teamer and NABC all-district first-team selection. He was also the first two-time Associated Press All-American since Cage accomplished the feat in 1983 and 1984.


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