May 20, 2008
Mark Dunn, a 6-foot-8, 280-pound forward from Danville Area Community College in Illinois, has signed a letter of intent to attend Eastern Washington University and play men's basketball for the Eagles. He is from Trafalgar, Ind., and is a 2006 graduate of Indian Creek High School.
Dunn averaged 5.5 points and 3.9 rebounds as a sophomore at Danville, helping the Jaguars to a fourth-place finish at the National Junior College Athletic Association Division II National Tournament.
"Mark not only provides us with much-needed size and strength, but he also has a very high basketball I.Q.," said EWU head coach Kirk Earlywine. "He has a skill level that will allow us to utilize him facing the basket as well as in the post."
Dunn played in 32 games this past season at Danville, averaging 13.7 minutes per game as a 12-game starter. He made 59-of-104 field goal attempts for 56.7 percent, and 57-of-77 free throws for 74.0 percent. He had 124 total rebounds, including 50 on the offensive end.
As a freshman in 2006-07, Dunn averaged four points and four rebounds with his career highs for points (26) and rebounds (13) coming in the same game against rival John Wood.
"I'm excited for Mark and happy for him to choose Eastern Washington and play for coach Earlywine and (assistant coach) Jamie Matthews," said Danville head coach Mike Carpenter. "They have that program going in the right direction. He'll be a good fit and his best basketball is ahead of him. He's a hard worker and dedicated to the game, and he's a great person and a good student."
Dunn scored in double figures eight times, including a season-high 19 in an 88-51 win over Wabash College JV when he made 9-of-12 shots from the field. He had at least eight rebounds on five occasions, including 10 when he had a double-double with 11 points and 10 boards in a 67-58 win over Spoon River.
He also made 7-of-10 shots from the floor to finish with 18 points and nine rebounds in the school's season-opening 67-62 loss to Lincoln Trail. He missed four games during the year because of a high ankle sprain.
Danville finished 24-12 and hosted the national tournament where it recorded a 73-66 quarterfinal victory over Penn Valley, Kan., before losing its final two games to finish fourth. The Jaguars were 9-5 in the Midwest Athletic Conference before winning the Region 24 championship and national berth with three-straight victories.
"We got hot at the end of the season and Mark was a big part of that," said Carpenter. "He provided leadership and scoring punch inside. His defense was outstanding down the stretch."
On their way to the national semifinals, the Jaguars defeated, in order, 11th-ranked Illinois Central (78-71), sixth-ranked Lincoln (76-71) and eighth-ranked Penn Valley (73-66). Danville was ranked 16th entering the post-season.
"Mark has played against some very good competition in his time here," added Carpenter "That's going to prepare him well moving on to the next level."
Dunn lettered four years in basketball at Indian Creek and twice was selected to the All-Mid Hoosier Conference team. As a senior, he was a Top 100 selection by the Indiana Basketball Coaches Association (IBCA) and was an Indianapolis Star player of the week. As a junior at Indian Creek, Dunn averaged 15.8 points and 7.5 rebounds, with highs of 23 points and 14 rebounds.
Dunn's high school coach was Rex Wilson, who is from the same hometown as Earlywine (Fortville, Ind.) and played basketball for Earlywine's father at Mt. Vernon High School.