Washington Makes Early Decision

Ever since he can remember, 2014 Williamsport (Pa.) Area High guard Isaiah Washington has loved the game of basketball. Sunday he announced he will take his talents to Penn State.

Basketball has always had a special place in 2014 Williamsport Area High guard Isaiah Washington's heart.

"I grew up playing basketball," Washington said. "It was my first word. I couldn't really tell you just one reason that makes me want to play basketball."

He continued, "It's just everything."

A first word that has turned into a lifetime of commitment.

"My mom told that my first word was basketball or ‘bah ball,'" Washington said. "My brother was in high school when I was born, I was around basketball all the time so I just picked it up."

Washington will take that lifetime of love to Penn State to play for Coach Chambers and the Nittany Lions.

"Today I committed to Penn State," Washington said. "After church we went out to eat and then I gave Coach Chambers a call and told him that I wanted to commit to Penn State."

Washington, still only a sophomore, doesn't have any doubt that his early decision was the right one.

"It was just the best fit my family and I," Washington said. "And the academics are second to none."

He added, "That is something that is very important to me, and the fact that they ensure that you are going to graduate from Penn State."

Washington was receiving interest from double-digits numbers of colleges, including Villanova, St. Joe's, Harvard, St. Francis, Rutgers, VCU, Baylor and Syracuse.

But since returning from a recent visit to Penn State, he was all blue and white.

"I visited Penn State Tuesday," Washington said. "It was my third time. Before that I saw them play Indiana and Michigan for their last game this year."

A big part of the 6-foot-3, 170-pound guard's decision is his future head coach, Pat Chambers.

"He has great charisma," Washington said of Chambers. "He is energetic, he knows how to keep their progress going and he knows how to make his team better."

Something that Washington can see happening with the Nittany Lions.

"I believe that Coach Chambers will turn the program back around," Washington said. "What he is trying to do seems like it is definitely working."

Plus, after returning from a Tuesday visit, there was no doubt in Washington's mind that PSU was the place for him.

"Just after seeing what they have to offer and how much academic support that they had, I had my mind made up," Washington said. "They had it all. I have a 4.0 GPA so academics are very important to me."

And something else that is important to Washington?

"Penn State basketball just plays hard every time they are on the floor," Washington said. "They always have fan support, and just the facilities are second to none."

Add being just an hour away from home and there was a lot to like for Washington.

"That was one of the important things, too," Washington said. "My family is pretty close so they can come see me play."


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