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McLean Inks Contract With Poland Club

August 11, 2008  Lynchburg, Va.  RSS
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Alex McLean became Ritchie McKay's 24th former player in 12 seasons to sign a professional contract.

Alex McLean became Ritchie McKay's 24th former player in 12 seasons to sign a professional contract.

Former Liberty Flame Alex McLean has signed a professional contract for the 2008-09 season with KK Politechnika Poznanska in Poland.

The Bay Shore, N.Y., native earned Big South all-conference first-team honors in 2008, marking the sixth-straight year Liberty placed a player on the first team, tying the second-longest streak in conference history.

McLean ranked No. 6 in the Big South in scoring with 15.8 points per game as a senior, while pulling down 8.9 rebounds per game, which ranked No. 3 in the league. McLean also ranked No. 2 in the conference in field goal percentage (55.7), while being one of three players in the league to be ranked in the Top 6 in both scoring and rebounding.

McLean spent two seasons at Liberty after transferring from Suffolk Community College in Long Island, N.Y. The 6-8 forward was an interesting story because he did not play basketball in high school. Standing only 6-2 as a high school senior, McLean played bass, piano and drums in the Bay Shore High School band. The concert bassist turned down the opportunity to study music at numerous schools on scholarship, including Cal-Berkeley and Hofstra, as well as receiving interest from Julliard, in favor of basketball after being gifted with a growth spurt late during his senior year.

"I am very happy for Alex," said Liberty head men's basketball coach Ritchie McKay. "To see Alex play for money is a testament to how hard he works. This doesn't surprise me one bit, and I know he is going to get better. I hope he is able to represent Liberty University and its mission by changing some minds in Poland."

McLean becomes the 24th professional player to play under McKay in the head coach's 12 seasons and the second this season to garner the opportunity to play for money. The Boston Celtics drafted J.R. Giddens in the first round of the NBA Draft in July. Giddens spent two seasons at New Mexico under McKay, serving as the Lobos' first McDonald's All-American recruit.