Aug. 19, 2002
ATLANTA – Jim Nystr?m, a 6-5 guard/forward from Stockholm, Sweden, has enrolled at Georgia Tech and becomes the fourth scholarship freshman on the 2002-03 Yellow Jacket basketball team, head coach Paul Hewitt announced Monday.
The 19-year-old Nystr?m played for the Swedish Under-20 National Team in 2001, and is enrolled at Tech in management. He also played two years for the Solna Vikings of the Swedish League, and NCAA rules stipulate that he must sit out Tech’s first eight regular-season games. Nystr?m will become eligible to play Dec. 29 when the Yellow Jackets visit Maryland for their Atlantic Coast Conference opener. He will be allowed to play in Tech’s two exhibition games.
Hewitt and his staff became aware of Nystr?m through a videotape that was sent to director of basketball operations, Peter Zaharis. After Hewitt and his staff reviewed the tape, they decided to invite Nystr?m to visit the campus.
“Prior to the visit, our research on Jim’s background told us he was a very hard-working young man who was an outstanding high school student,” said Hewitt. “On his visit, he impressed all of us as a person looking for an opportunity to get an education and play college basketball.
“As a player, all we know is what we’ve seen on tape. He’s an active defender who showed flashes of good outside shooting. I have no expectations of what he can contribute to our team this winter other than a great work ethic each and every day.”
Considered one of the top five shooting guards in Sweden according to Eurobasket.com, Nystr?m averaged 11.2 points, 4.0 rebounds and 1.8 assists in 24 games for Solna Solna during the 2001-02 season. He shot 33.7 percent from three-point range and 44.1 percent overall from the floor. In 2000-01, he averaged 5.2 points and 1.8 rebounds.
He joins one of the nation’s highly-regarded freshman classes, which includes 6-9 forward Chris Bosh from Lancaster, Texas, a McDonald’s All-America and a member of the USA Junior National Team that won a bronze medal at the Junior World Championships in July, 6-3 point guard Jarrett Jack of Fort Washington, Md., and 6-9 forward Theodis Tarver of Monroe, La. The Jackets also welcomed Mario West, a 6-3, 205-pound walk-on guard from Douglasville, Ga., who enrolled on Monday.
The addition of Nystr?m softens the loss of Clarence Moore, a 6-5 forward who decided over the summer to give up basketball for personal reasons. Moore, who averaged 9.4 points and 5.4 rebounds last season, remains in school to complete requirements for his management degree next year.
Tech returns nine letterwinners who helped the Yellow Jackets to a 15-16 record and a 7-9 ACC mark last year in Hewitt’s second season, led by Marvin Lewis, a 6-4 junior from Germantown, Md., who averaged 10.9 points a game last year. Also returning is sophomore Ed Nelson, a 6-7 forward who was last year’s ACC Rookie of the Year, and another ACC All-Freshman in 6-3 sophomore guard B.J. Elder.