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Joel Osborne

Joel Osborne writes

Posted Monday, September 14th 2020

Flyers land Zach Copeland from Illinois State

Bristol Flyers have completed the signing of Zach Copeland out of Illinois State University on a one-year deal.

The 6ft4in American guard has put pen to paper on his first professional contract and becomes the seventh player to commit to the club for the 2020/21 season.

Copeland averaged a team best 14.5 points per game in his senior year for the Redbirds, whilst making 81 three-point field goals and also leading the team with 32 steals.

The 23-year-old was also named the Illinois State basketball team’s most valuable player last season by his fellow teammates after the season was cut short due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaking to the club's official YouTube channel Copeland said: “It feels amazing, I’ve been dreaming about this since I was a little kid.”

“I’m definitely excited for the opportunity. The Flyers are a team that have been progressing over the years, so I want to come in and help that out.

"Coach Kapoulas has big expectations for me. We’ve been talking a lot about the way he wants us to play on both ends of the court this year and I want us to have a lot of success over the season.

"That’s my number one goal - to be as successful as possible with the team. I can’t wait to get out there on the court and meet all the fans."

Copeland's best performance for Illinois State came on January 16th, after a 32 point, seven assist effort against Drake made him one of just three student-athletes in NCAA Division I basketball last season with a game of at least 30 points, seven assists and zero turnovers.

“We’re very excited to welcome Zach to our programme.,” said Flyers Head Coach Andreas Kapoulas.

“He's an athletic and talented guard with great shooting ability, who can be a constant threat at all times on the court. He’s a player that loves to compete on both ends of the court and takes pride on the defensive end too.

"The fact he tied a single-game Illinois State record with eight made three-point field goals in January proves that he is always ready to make big shots.

“It's evident from our conversations that he is hungry and ready to work hard to help our programme this coming season."

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