Another star chooses Nevada | NevadaAppeal.com

Another star chooses Nevada

RENO – Nevada has won its second recruiting battle for the 2008-09 season.

Mark McLaughlin, a 6-4 guard from Inglemoor High in Kenmore, Wash., has verbally committed to the Wolf Pack.

McLaughlin follows in the footsteps of Galena standout Luke Babbitt, who backed out of a verbal agreement with Ohio State earlier this year to stay home and play for the Wolf Pack.

The agreement is non-binding, and by NCAA rules, Nevada coaches can’t comment on McLaughlin’s decision. Early signing is between Nov. 14 and 21.

McLaughlin had originally decided to attend Washington State during the summer, but apparently had a change of heart. He visited the Nevada campus last week and attended the Nevada-UNLV football game.

McLaughlin sent a text to Babbitt at approximately 4 p.m. Friday to let him know he’d decided to join the Galena star at Nevada next fall. Scout.com also reported on Friday that McLaughlin had committed to Nevada.

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“He’s a real smart player,” said Babbitt, who has played against McLaughlin during the summer. “He’s a really good shooter. He’s going to really help.”

According to Babbitt, McLaughlin canceled a recent recruiting trip to Illinois. McLaughlin also had a recruiting trip scheduled to Oregon, but it’s not known whether he will keep the appointment with the Ducks.

McLaughlin is ranked 86th by Rivals.com and 77th by Scout.com. He averaged 17 points a game as a sophomore, and averaged 23 a year ago.

McLaughlin was part of the Rotary Select club team. Current Nevada players Richie Phillips, Lyndale Burleson and Marcelus Kemp also played for Rotary Select during their high school careers.

This is a coup for Nevada coach Mark Fox. It may be the first time in Nevada history that Nevada has been able to recruit two players ranked in the top-100 by Rivals.com and Scout.com. Babbitt is ranked 34th by Rivals.com and 19th by Scout.com.