Junior to Watch: Ryan Appleby

A candidate for the #1 point guard in the junior class is Ryan Appleby from Washington. He's getting early recruiting attention and talks about his early list...

Ryan Appleby, 6-1 JR PG Stanwood (Wash.) High, is one of a handful of players competing for the title of best PG in the west. Appleby's strengths as a player are his feel for the position, his ability to create for others, good size and a nice outside shot with a quick release.

We talked with Ryan recently about his recruitment. He told us that Washington, Gonzaga and Oregon St. have all been by to watch him work out. He also said Missouri was scheduled to make the trip to see him, but the visit was cancelled due to the terrorist attacks.

When asked about the schools that have been showing him a lot of interest, Ryan rattled off a list that included Gonzaga, Missouri, Washington, Oregon St., St. Louis, Oregon, UConn, Florida St., UCLA, Stanford, Cal and New Mexico.

We asked if any school had jumped to an early lead and Ryan replied, "No, I'm pretty much wide open."

Ryan cited Florida as his dream school when growing up. "I liked their style of play, the fullcourt press, everything about the way they played," Ryan said.

We asked about the factors that will be important to him in his decision and Ryan said, "The coaching staff, the style of play, academics and early playing time. I want to go someplace where I can play early." When we questioned him about the opportunity to play for a national championship, Ryan replied, " Winning is really important. I don't want to go to a school that has never won. I'd like to go to a school that has a chance at the tournament."

Ryan told us that he plans on taking his visits as early as possible, so that he can make a decision prior to his senior season. But he doesn't see himself making a commitment prior to the summer.

Ryan has visited Gonzaga unofficially during their team camp. He's also been to Washington unofficially for a football game.

Ryan currently has a GPA of "around 3.2" and he just took the PSAT a couple weeks ago.

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