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July 29, 2008
UNIVERSITY PARK, PA., July 29, 2008 - Former Nittany Lion basketball standout Jan-hendrik Jagla will compete in men's basketball at the 2008 Olympic Games when he suits up with the German National Team in Beijing, China. He will join NBA standouts Dirk Nowitzki of the Dallas Mavericks and Chris Kaman of the Los Angeles Clippers as one of 12 members of team Deutschland.
Jagla, a native of Berlin, Germany, will compete in Olympic play at Wukesong Indoor Stadium in Beijing, Aug. 9-24. Germany is one of five European teams in the 12-team Olympic field, which includes defending champion Argentina. Led by Nowitzki's 32 points, Germany grabbed the last Olympic qualifying spot with a 96-82 victory over Puerto Rico in the final game of the FIBA Olympic qualifying tournament in Athens last week. Germany has never won an Olympic medal in basketball, but did claim bronze at the 2002 FIBA World Championships.
The 12 Olympic qualifying teams are split into two preliminary round groups of six teams each with the top four teams from both groups qualify for the knockout stage which will determine advancers to the medal rounds. Germany is in Group B along with the United States, host China, Greece, Angola and Spain. The Germans open competition vs. Angola on Aug. 10 and will face the U.S. team of NBA stars, including Lebron James and Kobe Bryant, on Aug. 18.
A seven-footer with the perimeter game of a two guard, Jagla played three seasons for the Nittany Lions from 2002-04 before leaving after his junior season to play professionally in Europe. He led the team in scoring (13.4 ppg) and rebounding (7.9 rpg) in 2004 while earning honorable-mention All-Big Ten selection. Jagla scored 813 points and pulled down 549 rebounds during his Penn State career, posting career averages of 10.2 ppg and 6.9 rpg while starting 71 games in a Nittany Lion uniform.
Jagla went on to play with Turk Telekom B.K. of the Turkish Premier division and currently is under a two-year contract with Joventut Badalona of Spain.