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VAN HORN NO. 2 VOTE GETTER AMONG PRESTIGIOUS 5 NAMED TO PRESEASON ALL-AMERICA TEAM.

SHARE VAN HORN NO. 2 VOTE GETTER AMONG PRESTIGIOUS 5 NAMED TO PRESEASON ALL-AMERICA TEAM.

Tim Duncan, the only returning All-America, was the lone unanimous choice today for the preseason All-America team.

The senior center from Wake Forest was the leading vote-getter on last year's preseason team, then went out and averaged 19.1 points and 12.3 rebounds to earn the postseason honor.The 6-foot-10 native of St. Croix, Virgin Islands, probably would have been the No. 1 pick in the NBA draft if he had left college, was named on all 68 ballots by a nationwide media panel.

Joining him on the preseason All-America team were Utah forward Keith Van Horn, who was named on 63 ballots; Cincinnati forward Danny Fortson, 60; Kansas guard Jacque Vaughn, 47; and Stanford guard Brevin Knight, 43.

Duncan averaged 3.8 blocks last season as the Demon Deacons went 26-6 and won the Atlantic Coast Conference title for the second straight year. They came within one win of reaching the Final Four, and four starters are back. That's why the sigh of relief from Wake Forest was so loud when Duncan announced he was returning for his senior season.

"I never thought he was leaving," Wake Forest coach Dave Odom said. "He was looking for reasons to sustain what he wanted to do anyway. Where the reverse of that is usually true, most of them want to leave, they see the money so they look for reasons to sustain that.

"He wanted to stay, in my opinion, and he looked for all the reasons to justify that, and it was easy to find them."

Van Horn was considered a lottery pick if he decided to leave early after averaging 21.4 points and 8.8 rebounds as a junior,but he, too, opted to return.

"In Keith staying, it signals something is good about the college game and the student athlete," Utah coach Rick Majerus said. "He'll become a better player and I think he'll be a more able pro."

Fortson, who averaged 20.1 points and 9.6 rebounds last season as a sophomore when the Bearcats fell one game shy of the Final Four, is the lone underclassmen on the preseason team. Top-ranked Cincinnati will rely on Fortson both on the court and off.

"Danny has really stepped it up as far as being a leader," Cincinnati coach Bob Huggins said. "He has really expanded his game. He's a better basketball player and he was already a great player and scorer."

Vaughn, who averaged 11 points and 6.6 assists as a junior last season in leading the Jayhawks to 29 wins, tore ligaments in his right wrist in a pickup game in September, underwent surgery and isn't expected to return until conference play begins in January.

Knight, considered one of the quickest guards in the country, averaged 15.5 points and 7.3 assists last season and capped the year with an impressive 27 points and nine assists in the Cardinal's second-round NCAA loss to Massachusetts.

Three other players from last year's preseason team also went on to receive postseason honors - Kerry Kittles of Villanova, Ray Allen of Connecticut and Marcus Camby of Massachusetts.

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ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

AP preseason

All-America team

Center - Tim Duncan, Wake Forest, Sr., 6-10

Forward - Keith Van Horn, Utah, Sr., 6-9

Forward - Danny Fortson, Cincinnati, Jr., 6-7

Guard - Jacque Vaughn, Kansas, Sr., 6-1

Guard - Brevin Knight, Stanford, Sr., 5-10