Start Of Classes Makes Two Newcomers Official
Sept. 5, 2001
SPOKANE, Wash. - The long rumored, anticipated and publicized arrival of men's basketball players Ronny Turiaf of Martinique and University of Colorado transfer Richard Fox was made official this week when classses began at Gonzaga University.
Turiaf, a 6-10 forward/center, and Fox, a 6-11 center, were both in the classroom this week, bringing a sigh of relief from Bulldogs' head coach Mark Few.
"It's great news," Few said of the arrival of the duo. "It gives us exceptional depth inside - this year with Ronny and next year when Richard is eligible. Both players had a lot of teams after them, and we are happy to have them at Gonzaga."
Turiaf, a true freshman, played the last three years for the INSEP in Paris. Regarded as one of the top European inside prospects, he scored the winning basket a year ago for the France national U-18 team in the European Championship. He is eligible to play this season.
Turiaf hails from Martinique, a Caribbean Island discovered by Christopher Columbus in 1494. It became a French colony from 1625 until 1946 when its statute was changed to French Overseas Department. On Dec. 31, 1982, the law of decentralization pased on March 2 was adpated to the French Departments, was voted by the French Parliament and a regional council was established.
Little did the Bulldogs realize that the guy who scored 15 points against them Dec. 30, 1999, in a Colorado win over Gonzaga at the Rainbow Classic would someday don a Zag uniform. But after two seasons with the Buffaloes, Fox made the decision this past spring to transfer and chose Gonzaga.
Last season as a sophomore Fox missed the first three games of the season with a broken hand, but returned to start 11 of the final 27 games. He averaged 6.3 ppg, 4.6 rpg, had 18 blocks and 12 steals for the 15-15 Buffaloes. Against Gonzaga in the Rainbow Classic his freshman season he went 6-of-9 from the field, 3-for-3 from the free throw line, grabbed 11 rebounds and scored 15 points while playing 33 minutes in a starting role.
"Richard is a skilled player who played very well against us in Hawai'i," Few recalled. "I think he'll be a lot like (point guard) Dan Dickau in that sitting out this season will help him get acquainted with us, mature him another year and then leave two solid seasons ahead of him."
Dickau transferred from the University of Washington for the 1999-00 season and sat out under NCAA transfer rules. He averaged nearly 19 points/game and was an integral part of Gonzaga's run to a third straight NCAA Sweet Sixteen last spring. After having just returned from the World University Games in Beijing, China, where he played for bronze medalist USA Basketball, Dickau returns for his senior season.
The Bulldogs are in off-season conditioning in preparation for the start of practice Saturday, Oct. 13. Gonzaga opens the regular season Nov. 16 at defending Big Ten Conference co-champion University of Illinois.
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