In advance of what he hope will be even bigger news on Friday, Staff Writer Griffin Bennett profiles Terrence Ross, who we more-or-less believe is certain to announce his commitment to attend UW on Friday. His high school teammate, Terrence Jones? We’re not so sure, but we’re posting the Ross piece today in hopes that we’ll be Jonesing it up tomorrow!
by Griffin Bennett — Staff Writer
It’s no secret that we’ve been praying to get both Terrences from Jefferson High in Portland for some time now. According to Terrence Ross’ post on his Facebook page he has “a BIG suprise for the skool [he’s] taken a visit to…” That school was UW on Monday.
If that wasn’t enough of a sign, in a Facebook message to Zagsblog.com (http://www.zagsblog.com/2010/04/25/terrence-ross-leaning-toward-washington/) he wrote “I am going to Washington because of the great relationship I have with the team and coaches. I thought it would be the best choice for me and I would fit in with the team.” Scout.com also has reported that Ross actually signed his letter of intent while in Seattle and wants to wait until Friday to officially announce his decision at his high school.
Ross’ Journey to Montlake:
Terrence Ross is a 6’5’’ Portland, Oregon native who began his high school career at Jefferson High School. After getting into some academic trouble at Jefferson, he and his mother became worried that Ross’ college career might be in jeopardy. They made the decision to homeschool Ross for his sophomore year while still being able to play for Jefferson. Terrence Ross and his Democrat teammate Terrence Jones dominated the Oregon basketball scene their first two years and won the state championship in only their sophomore year. Ross was awarded Oregon’s 5A State Player of the Year Award after his amazing performance.
With continued academic struggles, Ross transferred schools to Montrose Christian, a boarding school in Phoenix. Ross continued his basketball dominance while playing at Montrose with other future stars like Duke-commit Josh Hairston and 2012 top prospect Justin Anderson. Montrose became a nationally ranked team and with their success went Ross’ college prospects.
Early in his senior year, Ross verbally committed to play for Gary Williams at Maryland. He was ranked as one of the top shooting guards in the country and is widely regarded as having one of the “most pure” three-point shots in his class. The honeymoon with the Terrapins ended badly on New Year’s Eve as Ross informed Coach Williams that he would be re-opening his recruitment. When asked why he de-committed from Maryland, Ross said “I didn’t think that Maryland would be a good fit for me. Once I really took the time and thought about it, I thought that I should view all of my options.”
Shortly after that, on a trip home to Portland for the holidays, Ross shockingly decided to leave Montrose and go back to Jefferson High to finish out his senior year where it all started. Ross transferred back because his “mother thought it would be better if she could oversee [his] school work. She wanted to make sure that everything was going well.” Ross tried to re-join the Jefferson basketball team to help his old teammate Terrence Jones finish their senior year strong. Unfortunately for Ross, the Oregon School Activities Association (OSAA) has a strict policy that states that all mid-year transfers are ineligible, no exceptions. His high school basketball career ended right there but his recruitment only picked up steam.
While at Montrose, former teammate Terrence Jones had become the prized gem of the west coast for many college programs. Naturally both Ross and Jones began to shop themselves around as a package deal starting in late January. Ross quickly shortened his list of suitors to five: Washington, Oregon, Kentucky, Kansas and Oklahoma. These just happen to be almost identical to Terrence Jones’ final five list as well. As time began to progress, Ross and Jones started to influence each other in their own preferences. While never verbally, Jones seemingly eliminated Oklahoma and Oregon and Ross followed suit. This is about the time that Husky Nation started nervously checking every blog for any news about where these two were leaning. The game of tug-o-war over Ross has apparently ended as Ross fell in love with Romar and the rest of the team.
What this means for teammate Terrence Jones:
Ross’s commitment can only help and since we have one scholarship left we are all connecting the dots in our minds. They were always considered a semi-package deal, but lately Kansas’ Josh Selby has tried to convince that Rock, Chalk, Jayhawkin’ is better than Bowing Down. Since we all know that this is crazy talk, it is a good sign that one of his best friends, who has him on speed dial, now wears the purple and gold. Also, you can never discount Darth Calipari. Speculation had said that if C.J. Leslie, who was thought to be a heavy UK lean, committed to Kentucky then Jones would look elsewhere. However, Leslie committed to N.C. State this week, stating that he wants to stay closer to home and play with his friend (take notes Mr. Jones).
While conventional wisdom would say that this is a bad sign, but I think Jones has already made up his mind and this decision came a little late to actually matter. Multiple sources have predicted that Jones will commit to UW on Friday with Ross, but you’ll have to excuse me for not being overly confident. Since saying “I have a good feeling” is no longer enough analysis, I’d have to say I’m 60% sure we will have more than one Jefferson star named Terrence on the roster next year.
What to expect from Ross in 2010/2011:
Ross’ skills could warrant him more playing time than most freshmen that come into UW. His skill behind the arc is said to be very strong, but it’s his athleticism at the SG position that makes your mouth drool. If that last video isn’t enough, this one might make you miss Clarence Trent a little less. Regardless, our SG position is currently being filled by I.T. That doesn’t mean that Ross won’t be in the rotation. I’d expect to see him battle with C.J. Wilcox and Scott Suggs for minutes at the 2/3 spot. Coach Romar loves to ride the hot hand, so I’ll refrain from speculating on his minutes or averages because it could be as high as 15 minutes or as low as five per game.
Maybe more importantly, there has been speculation that Ross might be ineligible next year due to his academic problems from his past. However, according to Ross himself, he says that he will be completely eligible and there are no other reports that state otherwise. Until I hear something to the contrary, I’d say I’m 95% sure he’ll be enrolled at Montlake next year. Beyond ‘10/’11 though? His ceiling is incredibly high. The Dawgs haven’t had a guard with this much NBA potential since Brandon Roy. As some have said, he could end up becoming a better pro-prospect than Terrence Jones.
This last part here is for Terrence Jones only. Everybody else can stop reading:
Ok, Terrence it’s just you and me. Now I know I’m just some guy who writes for free on a blog that’s not even mine, but I just want you to hear me out. I know going to Kentucky or Kansas is a “sexier” pick than coming to UW but you could be the missing piece here. A Final Four run is completely possible with you in our starting line-up. The city of Seattle (which is about 1,000 times better than Lawrence and Lexington combined) and all of Husky Nation has desperately wanted a team that can bring a national championship in a major sport to the area. All of the pieces are assembled and all that is needed is to add one more Husky warrior who wants to finally put the Northwest on the map. Will you be that man? Will you stand-up and lead us to the promised land? Show the nation that there is more to life than flashy coaches and ESPN hype. Terrence, do you know what’s there beyond that court? IMMORTALITY! TAKE IT! IT’S YOURS!
Thanks for coming!