Paris Austin Visits Boise State

Paris Austin was nervous. He didn’t know what to expect when he stepped onto a plane bound for Idaho’s capitol city Friday morning. Hailing from Oakland, Calif., a location generally thought of as more diverse than Boise, the Bishop O’Dowd High School standout basketball player wasn’t expecting to be welcomed as warmly as he is at home.

When all was said and done, however, Austin could not stop talking about his official visit to Boise State University.

“It was really good,” the 5-foot-11, 155-pound Austin said. “Going to the state of Idaho, I thought it would be a lot of white people. It was a lot more exciting than I thought it was going to be. The campus was beautiful. I developed great relationships with the coaches and players and I got to play a little ball with them.”

In addition to the Broncos, the three-star prospect says he has offers from Florida State, St. Mary’s, Pacific, Loyola Marymount, Utah State, San Jose State, Tulsa and Montana. Boise State was his first official visit. Austin also plans on visiting Tennessee in the near future and taking an unofficial visit to St. Mary’s, a school located not too far from Oakland.

During the trip, Austin attended the Boise State football team’s 37-24 victory over Colorado State. It left quite the impression.

“The football game was awesome,” Austin said. “We beat them. I mean, Boise State beat Colorado State.

“The thing that really surprised me was the atmosphere and the fans. The city is all about Boise State. At the airport everybody had Boise State gear on. The fans are great. It’s not a super small university, but it’s not super big. It’s perfect. It’s right in the middle.”

Austin’s early nervousness quickly gave way to a sense of comfort and welcome. He felt a sense of home.

“I had never been to Idaho,” he said. “You want to be around some people who are your race. But at the end of the day it was really good. I met people who weren’t from the basketball program and they treated me real well.”

Austin said he got close with fellow Bronco hoops target Malek Harwell, a shooting guard from Century High School in Pocatello, Idaho. He said Harwell loved the trip and he thinks “he will commit to Boise State. Either there or Colorado will get him.”

As far as his own decision, Austin is taking his time.

“When it feels right, I will decide,” he said.

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