Geno Thorpe from Shaler Area High School is undoubtedly one of the most talented basketball players in the WPIAL this season. What scares coaches around the league even more is the fact that Thorpe is only a sophomore.
After transferring from Shady Side Academy to his home district of Shaler, Thorpe has led the Titans to an 11-0 mark so far this season while averaging 18.6 points a game.
Despite being only a sophomore, Thorpe has already garnered some impressive offers.
Recently, coaches from Wisconsin have attended Shaler's practice, to go along with the more regular visits of Pitt assistant coach Brandin Knight. Additionally, Thorpe said he has been in contact with Rutgers because of some familiarity with head coach Mike Rice, a one-time Pitt assistant. Seton Hall and Kansas have also expressed an interest.
When asked where Pitt ranks among all these schools?
"Definitely first," Thorpe said.
Thorpe added that he would like to give a verbal commitment to a school during his junior year.
Despite the heavy interest this early in his high school career, Thorpe says the interest hasn't bogged him down yet. Generally, he is enjoying the process so far.
"It‘s fun to be able to talk to the coaches and see all the different schools," Thorpe said. When it comes time to make that decision, there will be some key factors that will be important for Thorpe.
"Being close to home," Thorpe said, was one of them. "If the school I choose will honor my scholarship if I get hurt, and mostly just the location with my family and friends being able to see me play."
Thorpe was able to witness the highly anticipated match-up between Pitt and Connecticut at the Petersen Events Center a couple weeks ago. He was also scheduled to go to the Tennessee game but could not attend due to a conflict.
After attending the Connecticut game Thorpe was impressed with the atmosphere. When asked who his playing style most resembles on the current Panther team, he responded.
"Brad Wannamaker, because of his play making ability and how he does a little bit of everything," Thorpe said.
In addition to talking up Pitt, Thorpe wanted to pass along a message for Pitt fans in the area.
"I just want to ask you to pass this along and try to get some people to come out and watch Shaler play this season," Thorpe said.
Perhaps this time next year, Thorpe could have his college choice made. For now, he should continue to make his presence felt throughout the WPIAL.