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COLLEGE BASKETBALL NOTEBOOK: STANFORD'S JACOBSEN TO GIVE NBA A TRY.

Byline: Daily News Staff and Wire Services

Casey Jacobsen, Stanford's leading scorer in each of his three seasons, will enter the NBA draft.

Jacobsen, who led the Pacific-10 Conference in scoring last season with a 21.9 average, won't hire an agent to leave open the possibility of returning for his senior season, the school said Wednesday.

Jacobsen is third on the school's career scoring list with 1,723 points. Last season, he led the Cardinal to a 20-10 record and the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

When Jacobsen was a sophomore in 2000-01, Stanford won its third consecutive Pac-10 title and made the regional finals of the NCAA Tournament.

Stanford junior center Curtis Borchardt also is likely to enter the draft.

--Lopes new Fresno State coach: Oklahoma assistant Ray Lopes, 39, has replaced Jerry Tarkanian as Fresno State's basketball coach, agreeing to a five-year contract.

The Bulldogs failed to make the NCAA Tournament amid a series of suspensions and injuries this season, and fan discontent surfaced as the team struggled to a 19-15 record and an NIT berth.

Lopes, who spent the past eight years at Oklahoma, will direct the team when it moves into the new 16,500-seat Save Mart Center in late 2003, an arena that became reality in large part because of Tarkanian's presence.

Lopes will be paid a salary of $112,000 per year, according to Fresno athletic director Scott Johnson.

--More hirings: Eddie Payne, the former East Carolina and Oregon State basketball coach, will be introduced as South Carolina-Spartanburg's coach today, the school said. ... Carolyn Peck has been hired as the women's basketball coach at Florida.

--Cincinnati center dropped: Cincinnati basketball coach Bob Huggins dismissed Donald Little from the team after his starting center pleaded not guilty to charges accusing him of kidnapping, beating and burning his roommate.

Huggins took the action after determining Little violated one of the major terms of a reinstatement contract he signed last September.

Little was dismissed from the basketball program last May after his arrest on traffic violations.

--Jeffries nears decision: Indiana forward Jared Jeffries will make an announcement about his future early next week.

Sophomore Jeffries, the Big Ten's player of the year, has said he would consider leaving early for the NBA.

--Burns update: When the spring-signing period begins on Wednesday, Fairfax High star Evan Burns, who committed to UCLA last September, is hoping to sign a letter of intent as a fully qualified student athlete.

He received a score in January that met the NCAA minimum of 820,but because the eligibility requirements operate on a sliding scale with a players' grades, and Burns has a lower grade-point average, he must improve his score by at least 40 points to satisfy the NCAA's minimum requirements for eligibility, according to Fairfax High coach Harvey Kitani.

Burns, who took the SAT on March 16, is awaiting his latest score.

``He's still waiting for the March score,'' Kitani said Wednesday. ``He's going to have to go higher.''

Burns, who is in New York for tonight's McDonald's All-American game, was unavailable for comment. If he does not qualify academically, Burns is expected to either attend San Diego State, which accepts partial qualifiers, or enter the NBA draft, whose deadline for entering is May 12.

- Billy Witz
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Title Annotation:Sports
Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Apr 4, 2002
Words:548
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