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Former University of Washington sharpshooter Grant Leep enters his fourth season on the Eagle coaching staff after spending two seasons as an assistant coach at Community Colleges of Spokane.
Kirk Earlywine, who was named Eastern's head coach on June 14, 2007, said EWU players and others urged him to retain Leep. One of the strongest endorsements came from former Eastern head coach Ray Giacoletti, who was also a former assistant coach at the UW and is now an assistant at Gonzaga.
"It was very obvious to me in my interview how the players, the people that I met on campus, the people I talked to in this state and, specifically, coach Giacoletti feel about him," said Earlywine.
Leep graduated from the UW with a political science degree in 2002, and spent one season as an assistant at North Seattle Community College before moving to Spokane. The Sasquatch were 40-22 in two seasons with Leep on the staff of head coach Eric Hughes, who was an assistant coach at Washington when Leep played there.
Spokane finished 24-9 in the 2004-05 season en route to winning the Eastern Region title and placing fourth at the Northwest Athletic Association of Community Colleges (NWAACC) Tournament. In his first year at the school, the Sasquatch finished 16-13.
A four-year letterman for the Huskies (1999-02), Leep was a freshman on Washington's 1999 NCAA Tournament team. He was team captain as a senior in the 2001-02 season when he averaged 7.8 points and 4.1 rebounds per game as a starter at small forward. He led the Pac-10 Conference in three-point field goal percentage that season as he made a school-record 52.7 percent (39-of-74). He also holds the school record for career three-point shooting at 42.9 percent (60-of-140).
In his senior season, Leep was honored as winner of the Hec Edmundson Award (most inspirational) and the Wurster Award (top hustler). He also received recognition for Tyee Sports Council Community Service and 101 Club Scholar/Athlete Award.
Leep earned honorable mention All-America accolades while at Mount Vernon, Wash., High School, and three times was honored as an All-State selection. As a senior in the 1997-98 school year, he averaged 17.3 points per game to lead his team to a 25-2 record and a third-place finish at the State 3A Tournament. He scored 28 points and had 13 rebounds in the final game of his high school career in a 70-56 victory over Mercer Island. Before joining the Huskies, he scored 13 points and had 12 rebounds for a group of all-stars from the state of Washington in a 68-67 loss to Oregon in the Northwest Shootout.
As a junior, Mount Vernon finished 28-1 and lost to Mercer Island in the title game of the State 3A Tournament. He averaged 18.2 points and 8.5 rebounds that season, and 20.1 points and 9.0 rebounds as a sophomore.
Leep was born Sept. 30, 1979, in Bozeman, Mont. He is married to the former Allison Richardson, a standout volleyball player at Washington. She now works in EWU's Development Office after working as a sports reporter and anchor for KXLY TV in Spokane.