April 30, 2004

Maine guard signs with FSU

The basketball class for 2004 got a little larger on Friday. It wasn't much of a surprise since it had been rumored for weeks that Maine point guard Ralph Mims would commit to the Seminoles. What is a surprise is that he could be a part of the team this season. Until recently, everyone believed the 6-foot-2 guard was destined for prep school but he told Warchant.com Friday that he should be academically qualified after receiving a much higher SAT score this week.

Although everything will need to be cleared by the NCAA before he can be declared "officially qualified", it is certain that Mims, who was named Mr. Basketball in the State of Maine in 2004, signed a National Letter of Intent to play basketball for Leonard Hamilton at Florida State University on Friday.

"In my last four years that is what I was thinking about - to be two hours away," said Mims, who's parents are moving to Pace, Florida this summer. "I was a real big football fan and now I get to be a basketball player at Florida State. I'm really satisfied because that's where I want to go and now I have an opportunity to play there.

"The way they treated me it was like I'm one of their own and am already on the team. The didn't look at me just as a recruit."

Mims averaged 30 points and 7.6 assists per game and led Brunswick High Scholl in Maine to the Class A State Championship game as a senior. He scored a State Class A Championship game record 46 points against Portland after scored 41 points against Bangor in the sate championship semifinal game this season and was named the state tournament MVP despite his team finishing as the runners-up.

A true combo guard, Mims is comfortable playing both the point and shooting guard positions. He regularly played both positions during his high school career and helped lead his team to a winning mark of better than 95 percent.

A four-year starter and three-time All-State First-Team selection, Mims (6-3, 205 pounds) will join Hamilton’s Seminoles for the 2004-05 season. Originally from Pensacola, Fla., Mims is widely considered to be one of the top prep players in Maine boy’s basketball history. He led Brunswick to the state championship as a sophomore and to state runner-up finishes as a junior and senior. Mims was named the area Player of the Year by the Sun Journal of Lewiston, Me., as both a junior and a senior and led Brunswick to an 81-4 record as a varsity performer during his four-year prep career.

“Ralph Mims is a very exciting addition to our team,” said Hamilton. “His versatility will allow us to utilize his talents at both the point guard and shooting guard positions. His ability to play both positions well will allow him to earn valuable minutes right away. His addition immediately makes us deeper and better at both positions.”

Mims’ performance in the 2004 state championship semifinal and title games was outstanding as he totaled 87 points in the two games. In addition to his 46 points in the championship game, he scored 41 points including 34 straight from the beginning of the second quarter to the latter stages of the fourth quarter in the semifinal game.

He also led Brunswick to the state championship football game as the Dragons’ quarterback as a senior. He was a two-way player, also excelling at the cornerback position. Mims rushed for nearly 600 yards and completed nearly 50 percent of his passes as a senior. He also played receiver during the season and caught a 30-yard touchdown pass in a victory over Skowhegan as a senior.

Mims (Brunswick, Me.) selected Hamilton and Florida State over South Carolina and Providence. He joins a stellar recruiting class at Florida State that already includes guards Jason Rich (Orlando, Fla.) and Isiaah Swann (Washington, D.C.). The Seminoles’ recruiting class was No. 1 in the nation last season and is one of the best in the nation this season.

“In Ralph Mims, Florida State is getting an extraordinary player,” said Brunswick Head Coach Todd Hanson. “He has the ability and size to be successful at Florida State – he is a big, strong and quick. I believe he can be a prototypical ACC point guard who is going to fit in well with what Coach Hamilton and his staff are accomplishing at Florida State.”

Mims expects to begin working out in Tallahassee late in June.

Portions of story from FSU Sports Information

In other recruiting news, five-star forward Juan "Tello" Palacios has again postponed his decision. The Rivals.com No. 8 rated strong forward will likely make an announcement in the middle of next week. He is expected to decide between Louisville, Florida State and Baylor. There have been unconfirmed reports that Louisville is his leader, but that has not be verified by Palacios or his coach.

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