Jim Brandenburg may have scored one of his biggest victories as San Diego State basketball coach Monday when Courtie Miller said he would sign a letter of intent to play for the Aztecs.
Miller, the San Diego County Player of the Year as a junior at Torrey Pines High School, said at a news conference that he will sign the letter of intent with SDSU on Nov. 7, the first day of the signing period for high school seniors.
Miller, who said he was leaning toward UCLA before he made his official visit to SDSU last weekend, also visited UCLA and UC Irvine.
“SDSU was more in the middle,” Miller said. “I was really considering UCLA. I was almost sure I wanted to go there.
“I felt comfortable with SDSU. They’re the ones that came across as really caring. I don’t know what it was. I don’t know how to explain it. If I’m going to be somewhere for four or five years, those are the people I want to be around.”
Miller, a 6-foot 7-inch forward, averaged 18.2 points and 9.1 rebounds per game as a junior.
Miller led Torrey Pines to the top ranking in the county most of last season before losing to Kearny in the 2-A semifinals. The Falcons then lost to Los Angeles Kennedy in the first round of the Southern California Regional Division II playoffs and finished 28-3.
Miller said he wanted to announce his decision to avoid the distractions caused by the recruiting process.
“I think I can keep focused on Torrey Pines basketball and life,” Miller said. “I want us to go undefeated and win the section title.”
Miller is only the second county player of the year to sign with the Aztecs since 1971. Mike Haupt of Mira Mesa High School signed in 1984, but transferred to the University of San Diego the following season.
“Coach Brandenburg said he wants to keep the best players here,” Miller said. “San Diego is not very well respected as a basketball-playing city. I hope this can help wash some of that away. San Diego State has some good young talent and Coach Brandenburg is well-known for building a program. Eventually, it’s going to take off.”