FUENLABRADA, Spain – Former Quinnipiac University men's basketball standout James Johnson (Queens, N.Y.) will begin his professional career over in Spain, as the 6-foot guard has signed a contract with Forca Lleida, announced on Monday, August 27, 2012 by the franchise. Terms of the contract have not been disclosed.
"We are thrilled for James Johnson and his family as he begins his career in professional basketball," said Head Coach Tom Moore. "James is beginning in a great league in Spain and is very excited about this opportunity. He has the talent, work ethic, and determination to have a long and successful career. Much like DeMario Anderson, James Feldiene and Justin Rutty as they embarked on their professional careers before him, we wish James all the best from his entire Quinnipiac Basketball family."
The New York native has inked a deal with Lleida, a club in the LEB-Gold Division - the second tier professional league in Spain. Former Bobcat James Feldeine (New York, N.Y.) began his career in the LEB-Gold, but recently signed with Club Baloncesto Fuenlabrada of Liga ACB. The 1st division, Liga ACB, is generally regarded as the second most competitive league in the world behind the National Basketball Association (NBA).
James Johnson, a two-time All-NEC representative, wrapped up a remarkable career with the Bobcats in 2012. In his final season, Johnson finished with 22 points in the NEC Quarterfinals to become Quinnipiac's Division I scoring leader, surpassing the previous mark set by Rob Monroe's in 2005 (1,685). Johnson went on to amass 1,729 points and climbed to #7 on the All-Time Scoring list by the end of his career. The prolific scorer excelled in other areas as well, ranking second in Division I history for assists (479) and steals (185).
Last season, Johnson averaged 16.6 points, 3.4 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game. He led the team in points, minutes played (36.1), steals (39) and three-point field goals made (66), while finishing second in three-point field goal percentage (.363) and assists (104). Johnson carried much of the load on the offensive end, including two games where he poured in a season-high 28 points. He first hit the mark at St. Francis (N.Y.) and most recently accomplished the feat on Senior Day against Robert Morris. Johnson scored double-figures in 25 games for the Bobcats and reached the 20-point plateau in eight contests.
Along with Johnson, Forca Lleida announced two other signings as well - Juan Sutina and Djim Bandoumel.
Juan Sutina spent the last season with Recinor Ferrol CB. The Argentinean guard averaged 14.9 points, 3.9 rebounds, 1.8 steals and 1.7 assists per game in EBA. He made it into Spanish EBA All-Imports Team. Juan Setina used to play for Lleida back in 2006/10 seasons.
Djim Bandoumel will also start his pro career with Lleida. The Nigerian forward graduated from the University of Idaho, averaging 8.7 points, 5.2 boards and 1.5 blocks per game in his senior season. He made it onto WAC All-Newcomers Team.
James Johnson - QU Division I History
Points – First (1,729)
FG Attempts – First (1,510)
FG Made – First (580)
FT Made – Second (351)
3 PT Made – Second (218)
Assists – Second (479)
Steals – Second (185)
James Johnson - QU All-Time History
Free-Throws – Seventh (351)
3 PT Made – Fourth (218)
Assists – Fourth (479)
Steals – Fifth (185)
Quinnipiac fans should refer to the Official Website of Quinnipiac Athletics, www.QuinnipiacBobcats.com, for any schedule changes as well as the latest news, scores and highlights. The 2012-13 Men's Basketball Schedule will also be available for download at www.QuinnipiacBobcats.com for all mobile devices, including iPhones and iPads, as well as all desktop computers.
Contact: Tony Distasio; firstname.lastname@example.org