"The Marquette Madness event was great. The number one thing for me was that it was a family enviornment. I made my decision based on that and also the academic enviornment, and I know my parents will be happy that the education played such a big role in my decision."
The Marquette Madness event was standing room only, not a seat was available and fans without seats lined the railings around the concourse, and that was something that really impressed Williams. "Just to be there and see all of the fans and how they were so excited to support the team - that really meant a lot. Down South where I am from it is all football. Football is the biggest thing. At Marquette it is strictly basketball. These fans live and die basketball and to see how excited they are about their team was just great."
While Marquette has had some players from the past, the state of Texas and the South in general has not been a focus for the Golden Eagle staff, but that has certainly changed with Tom Crean adding Bennie Seltzer to the staff last year and Buzz Williams to the staff this year. When Seltzer came on board a year ago it wasn't long before he helped pull Nick Williams out of Alabama, and with Erik Williams it was Buzz Williams. (I know, how many people named Williams can I mention in one sentence?)
"Coach Buzz Williams has been great. I have known him for a while; I first met him a couple of years ago when he was at Texas A&M. He played a big part in my decision."
With the 6'6 Williams only being a junior, even the Marquette fans that follow recruiting know very little about his game. The services that have done Top 100 rankings for the '09 class all have Erik in the Top 100 and he is regarded by many as one of the top three players from Texas in the '09 class.
"I always looked at myself as a forward at the next level, but Coach Crean told me that he wants me to play a lot of guard too. I am excited, but I know I have a lot of work to do."
There were several top schools already recruiting Erik besides Marquette, schools like Oklahoma State, Kansas State, Texas and Texas A&M, and with his junior season that list was sure to grow, but after the Madness event Williams' mind was made up. "When it came down to it, in my mind, it was all Marquette. No other school could even come close."
When asked if there was anything that he wanted to add to the story he offered up thanks to the fans that he won't even play for until 2009. "I just want to thank all of the Marquette fans in Milwaukee. I really enjoyed my visit, Milwaukee is a great city and I can't wait to get back there!"
So Erik Williams was the first recruit that attended Marquette Madness to commit to the Golden Eagles, who will be next?