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Sports Shorts

Saturday July 28, 2001

Prep hoops star de-commits 


Derek Burditt, a New Orleans prep basketball star who verbally committed to Cal earlier this year, has rescinded his decision, reported this week. 

Burditt, rated as a top-50 player by several recruiting services, is a 6-foot-6 small forward from John Ehret High in Marrero, La. 

“You could say I’m de-committing,” Burditt said. “I talked to one of the assistants and told them that. He was telling me to think about it. It’s a done deal; I’m not going to Cal.” 


Echema to skip next season 


In a surprise move, Cal tailback Joe Echema will redshirt the upcoming season. No reason has been given yet for the decision by the player or the university. 

Echema was expected to be the main backup to starter Joe Igber. Fellow senior-to-be Saleem Muhammed transferred to Portland State when it became apparent after spring practice that he would be third on the depth chart. 

Echema’s absence leaves no experienced backup to Igber on the team. Senior Marcus Fields was the starting tailback as a freshman, but is now a utility back who will see time at several positions.