Ralph Sampson Talks about His Recruitment

Ralph Sampson, a 6-foot-11, 220-pound junior center from Duluth (GA) Northview visited Sampson attended the Minnesota-Miami of Ohio football game and watched the Gophers pull off a 41-35 triple overtime win. GoldenSports.Net caught up with Sampson to learn the latest on his recruitment.

Ralph Sampson is the son of former college and NBA standout Ralph Sampson. He played for the Georgia Stars AAU team and attended the LeBron James Skills Academy.

His father, Ralph Lee Sampson was one of the most heavily recruited players ever. He signed with Virginia and was one of only two male players in the history of college basketball to receive the Naismith Award as the National Player of the Year three times (Bill Walton of UCLA was the other male). Professionally, Sampson was a No. 1 draft pick, three-time NBA All-Star, and Rookie of the Year for the Houston Rockets.

The younger Sampson led Northview to a 15-12 record this season. Head coach Steve Bombard took over during the season after Northview's head coach resigned.

His younger brother Robert is a 6-foot-5 left-handed-shooting tenth-grader.

Minnesota was Sampson's first official visit. He had made an unofficial visit to the campus in May.

Sampson was not sure of where he was headed after his Minnesota visit.

"I'm not really sure. I know that I have some home visits coming up. I have all the visits on a big calander at home and I don't know it off the top of my head," he said.

Sampson said that he might take all of his official visits before making his decision.

"I might take all of them. After narrowing down my list, I might take all of them. Right now, I am excitied to visit all my schools, because there is a possibility that I could go to all those schools. I'd like to see what they have to offer," he said.

Sampson said that he does not have a favorite yet.

"It's still too early."

Sampson will likely sign in the early signing period in November, but could wait until spring to find the right school.

"If I am ready by that time, I will sign," he said. "If not, I'll wait a little longer."

Sampson's high school team should be improved as he prepares for his senior season and has stability in the coaching staff.

"This year, I think that we will be O.K. We have a few people stepping up, pushing each other and we are coming together as a team. At the end, I think that we will do better good."

Sampson said that the team has some returning talent and some newcomers who could help this season.

"We have some experience and we have some high-energy players. Players that are enthusiastic and can get the job done. I think in the end, we'll just have to pull together as a team and make a really hard push in effort for the win."

Sampson's brother figures to join him this season on the Northview court. His brother is six inches shorter and a different player on the court.

"My brother is more of a shooting guard. He likes to shoot the "three" and he likes to shoot it deep. He also likes to run up and down the floor a lot and grab rebounds. When we get a chance, we play one-on-one a lot."

Sampson said that there is not one thing that will stand out in his making his college choice.

"I am taking all these unofficial and official visits to find out what exactly I am looking for in a school and see what would be the best fit," he said.

Sampson said that he has enjoyed his time in Minnesota.

"I really like it a lot. I like the overall atmosphere. I like the coaching staff and all the players. I like the campus and I took a look at the school, academically, and I really liked that as well."

Sampson said that he could see himself becoming a Minnesota Gopher.

"I think so. I could see myself here," he said.


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