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Former Minneapolis North basketball star Khalid El-Amin, who helped lead Connecticut to a national championship and played in the NBA and Europe, has been hired as head coach at St. Thomas Academy.

El-Amin has most recently served as an assistant coach at Burnsville and, before that, Minneapolis North, which he helped lead to three consecutive state basketball championships during his playing days from 1995-1997. The former point guard also has led training camps for both El-Amin Training and Minneapolis Nike Basketball Camps for 12 years.

"Khalid is an energetic guy who understands the importance of relationships and development when it comes to student-athletes,'' Greg May, St. Thomas Academy athletic and activities director, said in a statement released Thursday. "His vast experience, basketball IQ and winning background is exactly what we were looking for in our next head coach."

As a high school player, El-Amin was a Minnesota Mr. Basketball winner in 1997 and a McDonald's All-American. He was inducted into the Minnesota High School Basketball Hall of Fame in 2018 as part of the initial class of inductees.

At UConn, El-Amin was named Big East Freshmen of the Year in 1998, the same year he helped Team USA win the gold medal at the Goodwill Games. The next season he led UConn to an NCAA championship.

He was drafted by the Chicago Bulls as the 34th pick overall in the 2000 NBA draft and played one season. He later played 15 years for various European teams before retiring due to injuries.

St. Thomas Academy, based in Mendota Heights, is coming off two consecutive losing seasons in basketball. The Cadets finished 3-11 last winter in a season that started after January because of coronavirus concerns.