Bright is scheduled to earn his undergraduate degree in science, technology and society from Stanford in June. He has one year of eligibility remaining after earning a medical redshirt for the recently concluded 2013-14 season. He will pursue a master’s degree in leadership from Saint Mary’s.
After lettering in each of his first three seasons, Bright suffered a season-ending shoulder injury during practice in late November. He underwent surgery in January and spent the remainder of the spring performing rehabilitation.
“Aaron has strong leadership qualities and the ability to score from the point guard position, which are both key attributes to be effective in our program,” said SMC head coach Randy Bennett. “He has played on successful teams in a very good program at Stanford and I have every confidence he will use his experiences to make a positive impact on our team next season.”
A native of Bellevue, Wash., Bright started 54 of his 105 appearances in just more than three seasons at Stanford. He registered career averages of 8.7 points, 2.9 assists and 25.5 minutes per game under head coach Johnny Dawkins. Bright’s 316 total assists ranks 10th in Stanford program history.
The 2012 National Invitation Tournament (NIT) Most Outstanding Player, Bright registered a career-high 29 points against Illinois State in the tournament’s first round. During the team’s five-game NIT title run, he averaged a team-best 16.8 points. Bright shot 64.1 percent from the field, 66.7 percent from behind the three-point arc and 88.0 percent from the free throw line.
A 2010 graduate of Bellevue (Wash.) High School, he was rated as the No. 135th player in the nation by Rivals.com. He led his high school team to a pair of King County conference championships and third-place in the state tournament as a junior. Bright averaged 20.9 points, 4.4 assists and 1.6 steals per game and was a first-team all state honoree and league Most Valuable Player as a senior.
Saint Mary’s returns six letterwinners from its team that went 23-12 overall and advanced to the second round of the NIT. The Gaels have the highest winning percentage of any NCAA Division I program in the state of California over the last decade and the seventh highest in the country over the last seven seasons.