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November 24, 2014

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high school basketball:

Palo Verde big man commits to South Carolina Upstate

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Sam Morris

Palo Verde’s Michael Buchanan reacts after being fouled by Centennial during their game Friday, Jan. 20, 2012 at Palo Verde. Centennial won the game 67-64.

Palo Verde High basketball player Michael Buchanan stands 6 feet, 10 inches — and he’s still growing.

Buchanan earlier this week verbally committed to South Carolina Upstate and is expected to sign a national letter of intent April 11 during the first day of the spring signing period, Panthers’ coach Jermone Riley said.

While he averaged 12 points and eight rebounds this winter in helping Palo Verde reach the Sunset Regional title game, Buchanan is still developing as a player and considered a diamond-in-the-rough type of player.

“They really like him. They love his hands; they love his footwork,” Riley said. “He’s still growing. They think he can get to 7-1 and be a force (down below).”

Buchanan also received interest from a few other Division I schools such as Central Michigan and UC Riverside, but South Carolina Upstate was his lone offer. South Carolina Upstate assistant coach Kyle Perry coached with Riley when they were both assistants at South Carolina State.

“It’s awesome to see these kids work so hard to reach their goals, whatever it may be,” Riley said.

Ray Brewer can be reached at 990-2662 or [email protected]. Follow Ray on Twitter at twitter.com/raybrewer21.

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