Following an offer earlier this week, Williamsport (Pa.) guard Isaiah Washington verbally committed to Penn State on Saturday, becoming the Lions' first verbal of the 2014 class.
Washington is Penn State's first commitment in the Clas of 2014.
Washington visited campus three times in 2012, traveling to State College for two games before unofficially visiting on Tuesday, where he picked up the offer.
On the heels of an offer from St. Joseph’s, the 175-pound combo guard decided to end his recruitment early and give his pledge to Pat Chambers and the Nittany Lions.
Fitting the mold of versatile player, the 16-year-old Washington has the handle to run the point, but generally slides over to play off-ball, mainly because of his height in comparison to the other guards.
“He is a slasher, likes to get to the basket, and can finish above the rim,” said Williamsport head coach Allen Taylor “For us he is primarily runs the two, but at the next level he has the skills to play the point exclusively.”
While checking in at 6-foot-3 doesn’t make Washington the tallest player on his team, he has taken the jump ball every game for two seasons now, and Taylor can only recall his star guard losing just two.
“He really gets off the floor.”
Washington’s game improved as the year progressed, seeing his defense and mid-range really take form as Williamsport his the home stretch of their season, which ended with a district championship and a second-round overtime loss in the ‘AAAA’ state tournament.
A milestone that didn’t seam attainable at the beginning of the year.
“Last summer during the off-season, when we were doing off-season workouts, he was the one saying “states” at the end of each session,” praised Taylor. “So he let those guys know we are going from worst to first, and that’s what we ended up doing.”
A 4.0 student in the classroom, Washington is a gym rat who was actually working out on the court the day after their final game this season, despite his coach’s plea to take a few weeks off.
“Watching his growth from his freshman year to his sophomore year, you can only anticipate where he is going to be his senior year,” admitted Taylor, who is excited for the next two years. “If you tell him he can’t do something, he is going to prove you wrong. The sky is the limit on this kid’s potential.”
For Washington though, committing to Penn State is just another step in his journey. Already preparing for AAU, the righty is excited for what the future holds, but isn’t content.
“I’m gonna be a Nittany Lion!”