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CHARLOTTESVILLEVirginia men’s head basketball coach Dave Leitao has announced the signing of three players to national letters of intent with the Cavaliers. The three players are 6-11 center John Brandenburg (Des Peres, Mo.), 6-6 guard Sylven Landesberg (Flushing, N.Y.) and 7-0 center Assane Sene from Senegal.

“We’re extremely pleased and happy that we’ve got three guys who represent not only part of the future of Virginia basketball, but most importantly represent what we know Virginia student-athletes to be about, and that includes being solid citizens and good students,” Leitao said. “They also meet the goal of increasing our talent level year to year. We believe John and Assane enable us to fill a need in the front court and adding a guy like Sylven on the perimeter speaks to the versatility we’ve tried to recruit from day one.”

Brandenburg averaged 8.2 points, 7.9 rebounds and 2.4 blocked shots a game as a junior at De Smet Jesuit High School in St. Louis, Mo., during the 2006-07 season. He earned honorable mention All-Metro Catholic Conference honors despite missing seven games with an injury.

As a sophomore in 2005-06, Brandenburg averaged 11.1 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.1 blocked shots a game. He earned first-team All-Metro Catholic Conference honors and was named the conference’s Newcomer of the Year.

“I’m happy to have someone like John for a number of reasons,” Leitao said. “This year we needed to address our frontcourt. John has athleticism, he’s got bounce and he’s got a good touch that I think will develop into a pretty good post option on offense. He has a lot of potential as a basketball player.”

Landesberg averaged 25.7 points, 10.5 rebounds and 3.6 assists a game as a junior at Holy Cross High School during the 2006-07 season. He led the Catholic High School Athletic Association in scoring and was selected the Player of the Year by the league’s coaches. He also earned first-team All-City honors from the New York Daily News and the New York Post.

As a sophomore in 2005-06, Landesberg averaged 20.9 points, 8.1 rebounds and 1.7 assists a game. He led the Catholic High School Athletic Association in scoring and was a first-team All-CHSAA selection by the coaches. He was also a first-team All-City selection by the New York Daily News and the New York Post.

Landesberg enters his senior season ranked third in career scoring at Holy Cross High School with 1,232 points. The school’s career leader is former Virginia player Willie Dersch with 1,399 points.

“Sylven comes with all of the savvy a traditional New York City player has, including his knowledge of the game, his game experience and most importantly his ability to score while leading a team,” Leitao said. “I think he’s a guy that can play on the ball a lot for us and be successful in that way.”

Sene currently attends South Kent Preparatory School in South Kent, Conn., and is in his first season of basketball in the United States.

“Assane is still developing as a player,” Leitao said. “He’s worked so hard at rebounding and defense he has a natural knack in those areas, which usually come first with an international player. He also possesses the ability, because he has a terrific touch and feel on offense, to become a really good offensive player.”

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