Yesterday, on the high schools blog, we highlighted the relationship between new Penn State head coach Pat Chambers and Charlestown's Akosa Maduegbunam, who made a verbal commitment to the Nittany Lions yesterday.
The relationship dates back more than a year ago, when Chambers offered the Hyde Park resident as head coach of Boston University. Today, ESPN basketball recruiting analyst Adam Finkelstein follows up with more details on Chambers' recruitment of Maduegbunam, who is expected to finish his high school career next season at Winchendon.
Chambers had made Maduegbunam his top priority in the Class of 2012 at BU and maintained his interest even after arriving in the Big Ten.
"They had been recruiting me for a year, a year and change," Maduegbunam said. "I had a really good relationship with the entire coaching staff but in my mind I always knew I wanted to go [to college] out of state so I almost thought it was a miracle when Coach Chambers went to Penn State."
While Maduegbunam's previous scholarship offers came primarily from mid-major level programs, Chambers and his staff may prove to be a bit ahead of the curve here as Maduegbunam is a guy who likely would have seen his recruitment get much more competitive after next month's live period given his shot-making ability and high-level athleticism.
"I liked being under the radar," he said. "I always knew I was a high-major kid and Coach Chambers knew it too."
With his recruitment now behind him, Maduegbunam's approach to the rest of the summer will consist of proving his doubters wrong, beginning at the Reebok Breakout Camp to start the month and then continuing on the grassroots circuit with his Expressions Elite squad.
"I don't get into politics or rankings," he said. "I just go out and try to make shots and make basketball plays."
FERNANDES ON THE RISE
Charlestown head coach Edson Cardoso also told ESPNBoston.com's Brendan Hall yesterday that things are slowly heating up for the courtship of guard Rony Fernandes. Hofstra and Rhode Island have been showing interest for some time, and now Charlotte is the latest to enter the foray.
Cardoso told Hall that Fernandes could be making a commitment before the start of next season.