Andre Roberson could have signed with Tulsa or Wichita State last fall and throughout his senior season in high school, but on the advice of his coaches and his father, John, a former standout at New Mexico State, he held off.
Roberson was a late bloomer in some respects. His dad and coaches wanted to give him more time to develop his game and mature physically. In the past month as film of his senior season became available and college coaches became aware he was still unsigned, recruiting interest exploded.
Roberson heard from UCLA, DuPaul, Providence, Clemson, Penn State and Colorado in recent weeks. He just happened to be in Denver with his AAU team last month around the time Colorado was undergoing a coaching change. One of his teammates was pledged to attend Northern Colorado to play for coach Tad Boyle, who learned Roberson was still looking for the right fit at that time.
When Boyle was hired at CU, he set his sights on Roberson, a versatile 6-foot-7 forward, who can play in the paint when necessary but also has the offensive game to step out and shoot 3-pointers.
"You guys are getting a good, good, good one, especially this late in the process," Roberson's AAU coach Max Ivany said.
Roberson's father played at New Mexico State (1985-89) and spent 12 years playing professionally in Australia, Portugal, Sweden, Germany and the Continental Basketball Association. John Roberson said his son chose the Buffs because he will play in one of the nation's top conferences, he has an opportunity for immediate playing time at CU and he will get a chance to play in front of family and friends back home in Texas at least twice a year.
"At the beginning of the year, he was developing and he wasn't where I thought he should be at athletic-wise," John Roberson said. "I thought he would be a little bit better once he matured more. So that's why we waited, and he came on really strong at the end of the year and really started getting the attention of a lot of people."
Andre Roberson will probably come to Boulder in time to enroll in one summer class in the second summer session and familiarize himself with the campus and his new teammates.
Ivany said he expects Ivany will continue to improve dramatically at the college level, especially as he is immersed in a strength and conditioning program.
"From month to month, he keeps getting better literally," Ivany said. "He's probably one of the most improved kids I've ever been around from his sophomore to his senior year.
"Strength is an issue, but he's long enough and athletic enough that he's got other things that can make up for it. He doesn't have to front big post men. He can play behind them and he's long enough to alter their shots. He's got other things going for him until his strength develops."
We will have more from Roberson in a separate interview later.