MBK: Three California preps choose UC Santa Barbara

Christian Terrell, a combo guard from Sacramento High School, Max Heidegger, a point guard who will play his senior season at Oaks Christian in Thousand Oaks, Calif., and Felix White, a forward from Besant Hill School in Ojai, Calif., have signed National Letters of Intent to play basketball at UC Santa Barbara, head coach Bob Williams announced Thursday.

“Our staff really likes this group,” Williams said. “We think we’ve added a great deal of talent, versatility and upside. I really look forward to watching them develop. All three are the leaders of their respective team and fit our program in that they are outstanding students and outstanding people.

At 6-foot-5, 185 pounds, Terrell will give the Gauchos another in a long line of versatile and athletic wings. As a junior, he averaged 13.7 points, 7.0 rebounds, 4.1 assists, 2.2 steals and 1.2 blocked shots per game. He made 38 three-point baskets and shot 36 percent from outside the arc. Terrell was named First Team All-Area by the Sacramento Bee and First Team All-Metro Conference after helping his team to a 28-6 overall record and a14-0 mark in league play. On the AAU level, he played for the Oakland Soldiers, one of the top programs in the country.

“Between high school and AAU ball, Christian has been playing at a high level for a long time,” Williams said. “He is very versatile and can guard the one, two or three. He has great ball skills and can really play at a fast tempo. He is also a good driver, can really pass it, has great scoring instincts and is unselfish. I expect Christian to have a great senior season.”

Terrell averaged 11.9 points, 7.2 rebounds, 4.7 assists and 2.8 steals per game as a junior. He scored a career-high 28 points vs. McClatchy HS and added 25 vs. Burbank HS. In a game against Kennedy HS he had a career-high 15 rebounds, and he has twice passed off for nine assists in a game. In addition, Terrell has 78 total three-point baskets over his sophomore and junior seasons.

Heidegger, a 6-foot, 160-pound point guard, will play his senior season at Oaks Christian after attending Blair Academy in New Jersey, but not playing basketball, for his junior year. He played as a freshman and sophomore at Crespi HS in the San Fernando Valley.

As a sophomore at Crespi in 2013-14, Heidegger played in 21 games before he was sidelined by an injury. In his 21 games, he averaged 19.4 points, 2.8 rebounds, 1.4 assists and 1.5 steals per game. He had 34 points against Alemany HS and 33 against Harvard-Westlake, making seven three-pointers in the process. In all, he had nine games of 20 or more points and finished with 40 three-point baskets.

As a freshman in 2012-13, he played in all 33 games for Crespi while averaging 15.7 points per game. He had 32 points in a game against Price HS and another 31 vs. Quartz Hill HS.

“Max is very gifted with the basketball and has a special feel for the game,” Williams said. “He has a very gifted offensive skill-set. He can shoot it, bounce it, pass it and drive it. He is like Gabe (Vincent) in the sense that he is as complete an offensive player as we’ve had in a while. As with Christian, I expect Max to have a huge senior season.”

White is a 6-foot-8, 235-pound forward who has had two outstanding seasons at Besant School in Ojai. During his junior campaign he averaged 14.8 points and 11.0 rebounds per game while shooting 53-percent from the field. White had career-highs of 28 points and 23 rebounds against the Ojai Valley School. He also had 28 points against San Fernando Valley Academy and 26 vs. Dunn School. He had 15 or more rebounds six times during his junior season. Following the season, he was named First Team All-CIF Division 6.

As a sophomore, White averaged 12.8 points and 14.1 rebounds per game while shooting 53-percent from the field. That season, he had 15 or more rebounds in nine of 21 appearances.

“Felix is a very impressive physical specimen,” Williams said. “He has a good skill-set and can step away or score with his back to the basket. He played against some good AAU competition, but we are very optimistic that when he is put in a situation where he has a strength coach, can practice in an indoor facility and get shots up more regularly, he can really develop into something special.”

Williams said that the signing of Terrrell, Heidegger and White will complete the program’s early signing period, but he also said he and his staff will continue to recruit for the spring signing period.