Saturday, October 30, 2010

Boatright Seems Right

Spoke with Ryan Boatright today prior to UConn's practice. Seems like a nice, grounded kid -- despite all the recruiting controversy he's been through. Also sounds like he's ready to make a decision -- which is good news for UConn.

Boatright has two visits left -- UNLV next week, and Oklahoma at a later date. It's possible he won't take either.

"If I'm feeling this, and I commit, I'm not going to take them," Boatright said. "I don't know yet. Me and my mom are going to sit down and talk about it."

Boatright, of course, de-committed from West Virginia last week only a few days after giving Bob Huggins a verbal commitment. The reason: Jabarie Hinds, another point guard (and UConn target) committed just two days later, creating a logjam at the position in Morgantown.

It's not the first time that Boatright seemed poised to attend a school but wound up not doing so. Remember when then-USC coach Tim Floyd created a stir when he recruited a 13-year-old kid out of Aurora, Ill.? That kid was Boatright.

However, Ryan's mother, Tanesha, stresses that her son never actually de-committed from USC. Rather, when Floyd resigned amid USC's recruiting scandal, Ryan decided to re-open his recruiting (though some say USC had stopped recruiting him by that time, anyway).

"It's been hard as a mom to watch him go through the USC thing early," Tanesha said on Saturday. "I wouldn't change it. I think it made him who he is today. People kept saying he de-committed again. He didn't de-commit from USC, he was in eighth grade. We didn't leave USC, Tim Floyd left. It wasn't a de-commitment. Then, going through the West Virginia thing was hard. He was excited, I was excited. We didn't think it would end up that way."

But it did, and now Boatright is in Storrs on an official visit. He went to the football game last night (where, ironically, UConn beat West Virginia in overtime), and watched the Huskies' practice today.

"It's going real well," Boatright said. "I'm enjoying the practices, (hanging with) players, stuff like that."

He said UConn was "always on the radar," and that there's plenty to like about the program.

"It's UConn. Coach Calhoun, all the pros, the program, period. It's my style of play, up-and-down, he plays two guards all the time. It's a good fit."

Boatright feels there will be playing time available next season when Kemba Walker likely leaves for the NBA.

"He's a great player, he will be leaving," Boatright predicted. "Calhoun says we need another guard, and I feel like I can fit in."

His strengths?

"I'm quick, I've always been able to dribble, I'm a decent shooter, and I'm a good finisher around the rim. I'm real athletic."

Tanesha Boatright noted that her son has "always had an interest in UConn."

"I kind of had a 'mommy' moment yesterday on the plane, like, 'We're going to UConn!' We have a different expectation now, coming out of the first situation. Our eyes are a little open, and he's kind of a little different."

"As a mom, I want him to go somewhere where he's going to be challenged, to be the best he can be, somewhere where he's going to be surrounded by people who are going to push him to be excellent on the court and off the court. And I’m pushing for the education. A lot of kids got it, but a lot of kids don't go to the pros. I want to go somewhere where he's got the best of both worlds.

As for the West Virginia situation, Tanesha said: "We knew that they were recruiting (Jabarie), but we didn't think they would take both of them. Since we committed first … he just looked at it like, 'When I committed, it wasn't what it was.' When he committed, there was no him, (Jabarie) and the other two point guards. The situation changed when they took that other commitment. I told him, 'analyze it, think about it.' He came back and said, 'Mom, I don't think it's going to work for me.'"

UConn, however, might work out just fine.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Umm, it's not legal to interview a player on a recruiting visit...nice job, "journalist."

October 30, 2010 at 11:11 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not only is it illegal to interview a player on a recruiting trip since it happened on UCONN campus it can be considered a recruiting violation and make it more of a problem with the upcoming NCAA restrictions. Even though he might fit great in the program he is not worth the harsher restrictions let him go to UNLV or Oklahoma we will grab one as good if not better. Plus it might show we are serious about obeying rules and the NCAA will let us off with just our self imposed restrictions.

October 31, 2010 at 1:52 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is this your first day on the job?? Do you have any idea how blatantly illegal this interview is to the NCAA????? UCONN's name is being dragged through the mud and Calhoun is now considered a cheater. This ridiculous NCAA violating interview is not helping matters at all!!!!

October 31, 2010 at 6:17 AM 
Blogger Cody said...

Ummm this is a reporter for a CT paper. Not a uconn paper, not a uconn employee. I have seen countless interviews with players on recruiting trips by all types of media outlets and never, never heard this before. How is a reporter interviewing a high school athlete a violation. It's just dumb to say that. Sounds more like some sour Mountaineer fans that are upset that they downgraded from Boatright a top 50 player overall to Hinds who doesn't even crack the top 100. Great reporting. Go Uconn!

October 31, 2010 at 10:32 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If this blog is in conjunction with a newspaper and is published either online or in print it is illegal

It is considered tampering/undue influence by the NCAA. Let's hope the NCAA does not get a link to this.

October 31, 2010 at 11:57 AM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ummmm...Cody. If this was SO legal and legit, why have they taken down the video ?? Hmmmm ??

October 31, 2010 at 1:55 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

does anyone have anything better to do than to post threats on a blog comment section? Really?

November 1, 2010 at 12:33 AM 

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