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Jan. 13, 1998

LaPhonso Ellis Establishes Academic Scholarship Endowment

NOTRE DAME, Ind. - LaPhonso Ellis, a 1992 University of Notre Dame graduate and a member of the NBA's Denver Nuggets, has established an academic scholarship endowment at his alma mater for students from his hometown of East St. Louis, Ill.

"Undergraduate financial aid is Notre Dame's top fund-raising priority," said Rev. E. William Beauchamp, C.S.C., the University's executive vice president. "We are deeply appreciative that 'Phonz' is helping in this area while also assisting young people from his hometown."

Beginning in the 1998-99 academic year, earnings from the LaPhonso D. Ellis Scholarship fund will be used to provide financial aid to Notre Dame students with outstanding credentials and demonstrated financial need and who attended East St. Louis Lincoln High School or East St. Louis Senior High School.

A 1988 graduate of Lincoln High, Ellis played forward at Notre Dame from 1988-92, finishing eighth in career scoring with 1,505 points and third in rebounding with 1,075. He was selected by the Denver Nuggets in the first round of the 1992 NBA draft -- the fifth selection overall -- and averaged 14.7 points per game that season to earn a place on the NBA All-Rookie Team. He has averaged 15.4 points and 8.1 rebounds in his five-year career.

Ellis is one of a number of Notre Dame student-athletes -- including Chris Zorich, Andy Heck, Johnny Lujack, Todd Lyght, Bryant Young, Demetrius DuBose and Jerome Bettis -- who recently have established academic scholarship endowments at the University. Notre Dame basketball coach John MacLeod and former football coach Lou Holtz also have created scholarships.

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