OAKLAND, Calif. -- When Folsom (Calif.) had the audacity to close to within 22 points of Oakland (Calif.) Bishop O’Dowd in the NorCal CIF Semifinals on Tuesday at Laney College, and when the Bulldogs started pressing and playing a bit more physical, five-star Ivan Rabb -- who had taken a seat to start the fourth quarter, after tallying 16 points and 9 rebounds on the game – decided enough was enough. He re-entered the game, and within 15 seconds, hammered home a two-hand slam dunk.
“They were being physical, so I had to put some fear into them, and finish really hard around the basket, and that’s what I did,” Rabb said.
Rabb finished with 22 points, 15 rebounds, one assist and four blocks on the night, as the Dragons easily dispatched Folsom and 2016 star Jordan Ford 77-57, to move on to face Modesto (Calif.) Modesto Christian on Saturday.
“I just think we’re playing really well together right now,” Rabb said. “I think if we continue to do that, I don’t think we can be stopped.”
That ability to turn things on at-will is something Rabb hopes he can find a way to bottle, to be able to stretch it out over an entire game. He came out on fire in the first quarter, scoring 9 points with 2 blocks and three rebounds as the Dragons set a tone early against the Bulldogs.
Rabb is narrowly focused right now on the pursuit of that state title ring, and when told that a sports blog announced that he would commit to California – his most recent official visit destination – the five-star was quick to shoot down that rumor.
“I have no idea where they got that,” Rabb said. “People are just trying to get attention. I don’t pay attention to it. Nothing’s solidified until I say it is.”
When will things be solidified?
“I don’t know yet,” Rabb said. “There’s still a lot of stuff on my mind. I’m still trying to win this ring. That’s my main focus right now.”
If O’Dowd does beat Modesto Christian, they will advance to the state finals a week from Saturday at – you guessed it – California’s Haas Pavilion, on the Berkeley campus.
Rabb has yet to set up his next two official visits, and said that he may not even take the final two – to Kansas and UCLA – before making a decision. While Rabb did shoot down the commitment rumor, the fact that the hometown team would potentially have gotten the final official visit looms very, very large.
The late signing period for men’s basketball starts on April 15, and Rabb would be potentially playing in a state title game at Haas Pavilion on March 28. Close friend Davon Dillard has already pulled the trigger, and this week, head coach Cuonzo Martin is putting the full-court press on small forward Tyson Jolly with an in-home visit.
“There is the potential that I may not take those two visits,” Rabb said. “If I know where I want to go, I’ll just get it over with, because I really do want to make this decision.”
Rabb wouldn’t go so far as to say that he won’t even think about recruiting until after winning a state title, but said that “right now, that’s just what I’m focused on. If I’m 110% sure, then it’s over with.”
How sure is he of anything regarding his recruitment at this point?
“I’m not sure at all,” Rabb said.