The 96th overall recruit in the ESPN 100, Lance Tejada from Blanche Ely High School (Hollywood, Florida), committed to ECU over the weekend. Here's my interview transcript with him about his decision.
Take me through when you made the decision, when and where did it happen?
"I was watching the football game (against ODU) and head basketball coach (Jeff) Lebo brought me and my parents into the coaches office," the 6-foot-1, 175-pound Tejada said. "We talked about the visit and he said he was ready for me to be a Pirate. That's when I told him I was ready to be one myself. I had my mind made up before I went to speak with him. He was telling me how I'm a vital piece to the program moving forward and he didn't believe me at first. He didn't know if I was officially committing, he looked at my parents in shock and asked them. Once he figured it out he was so excited he yelled and gave me a hug. It felt good to have the head coach be excited that I'm on board, it made me feel more than a regular."
You had offers from Virginia, Central Florida, South Florida, Rider, Murray State, Miami, George Mason, Florida State, Florida International, Butler and Alabama. Why did you choose ECU?
"I just felt the connection between myself, the coaching staff and the community," Tejada said. "It's not about how high you go it's about going where you want to be and producing. I feel like I can do that in the guard-oriented offense at ECU. I wasn't into the school for the hype, this was best for my interests; I can hopefully play early and have the ball in my hands."
Living in Hollywood, Florida. How did you get such a good feeling about ECU?
"It all happened when I got there," Tejada said. "I was speaking with Lebo throughout the year and I always had interest, but when I got to campus it was a whole different experience. I heard (Greenville) was a college town, everyone there has school spirit, I always wanted to be at a school like (ECU). The Pirates have some of the best fans in the nation, who wouldn't want play for that?"
What is the main thing that ultimately decided your commitment?
"I was there for their first football game and the atmosphere was crazy," Tejada said. "The feeling that I had when I was walking around with the team is what did it. I didn't know the guys at first, but felt like I knew them for a year or so after a short amount of time. They are all so cool; it's a team-oriented environment and more of a family then a team. I have that ‘can't wait to get there' feeling about ECU."
Describe your style of play. Are you a score-first type of point guard or prone to passing?
"I can change my game up either way," Tejada said. "Some people said I was a pass-first guy, but a lot others have told me I'm more of a scoring guy. I can be versatile and change it up to do either depending on what the team needs me to do. Whatever I can do to help us win, whether it's points or getting people better looks I can do it. I pride myself in not being a one-dimensional player; I can be a game changer and make an impact at the next level. "
Tejada is an affective point guard with a high basketball IQ. He makes his teammates better with his ability to push the ball and deliver to open teammates when needed. Tejada is gifted in making the right pass with touch while on the move at a high speed. Lebo has found himself a talented playmaker for any offense.