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CSU standout JaCori Payne signs pact to play in Armenian league

After four basketball seasons at Columbus State University, Jacori Payne is hitting the road.

The high-scoring Cougar standout has signed a professional contract with Arakatz, a new team that will compete in the Armenian Basketball League.

Payne, a southpaw from Dublin, Ga., is the latest Cougar to continue his career in the international ranks, making him the 13th student-athlete to play professional basketball during head coach Robert Moore’s tenure and the 11th in the last five years.

“I am truly happy for JaCori,” Moore said. “He put in many hours to achieve his goal of being a professional athlete. He understands what it takes from training to nutrition. He is the definition of a student-athlete and will go down as the most efficient scorer I have coached.”

A two-time All-Peach Belt Conference selection, Payne spent four seasons in a Cougar uniform, playing in 93 games. He averaged 14.5 points per game for his career, leading the Cougars in scoring in his junior and senior seasons. Payne’s 1,347 points rank fourth on CSU’s all-time scoring list.

“I feel that this will be a good opportunity to establish myself as a professional athlete,” Payne said. “This will allow me to branch out and network with different people to open up newer opportunities in the future to continue to build on this moment.”

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