Houston North Shore HS (Tex.) wing Jarrey Foster could be a piece to the class.
Foster just recently decommitted from Rice even while recovering from an ACL tear he sustained in June when his foot got stuck on the court, causing his knee to hyperextend.
“I was in a little bit of a panic mode because they told me I wasn’t going to be able to play for nine months, but now that my rehab is going so well, they’re predicting me to be back in six months so I can play ball again and let other people see me,” Foster said. “I really didn’t commit just because of my injury, but I did want a safe spot so I had somewhere to go.”
Larry Brown paid Foster a visit at school yesterday then followed up with an in-home visit along with assistant coach Ulric Maligi. It was Foster’s first time meeting Brown and the 6-5, 190 pound guard/forward came away impressed.
“It was great. There’s nothing more you can ask for with a head coach. Just hearing him speak, it was great hearing it from him. You can’t get that everyday,” Foster said. “He was just speaking honestly and that’s what you want to hear from a head coach. He told me he’s going to coach me up so I can be the best person I can be.”
It was big news for not only Foster, but his family and friends that the Hall of Fame coach was coming to visit and offer Foster.
“Not just my parents, but my support base. Everybody says when I say that SMU is recruiting me, they say ohh Larry Brown you got to see what he’s talking about.,” the M&E Elite star said. “My family loves what he’s bringing to the table.”
Foster brings an aggressive style to the court, constantly wanting to attack the basket, a big reason why he was averaging around 18 points a game for M&E Elite before his injury. That type of production had Foster hoping for a breakout summer like one of his teammates, another former SMU target.
“After my first live period, I was pretty much at the top of the market in Houston and going into actual summer play, I was looking for an outstanding summer, a breakout summer like Kerwin Roach had,” Foster said. “After I tore my ACL, it was just something I had to deal with.”
Foster and Roach have talked about how SMU is a budding top 25 team and that the Mustangs are on the rise, something Foster would love to be a part of.
“It’s nice that they’re building up the program. With me possibly going to a program coming up out of the blue that no one had really talked about it’s a good opportunity,” Foster said. “With Larry Brown as a coach, that’s a great opportunity to be seen. With the program coming up, that’s a great opportunity for myself to come in and do what I have to do to go to the next level.”
Brown and Maligi set up a visit for Foster on Thursday through the weekend. Foster is hoping to see how he’d fit into the program and on campus as well.
“I just want to see the campus life. Since I’ll be coming on Thursday, I’ll get to see a day of college life and classes,” Foster said. “I want to see the engineering department and practice and coach Brown coaching in person. That will really determine where I want to go at that point.”
The biggest point was Foster feeling accepted, something SMU’s players have felt since their run this past season.
A few weeks ago was the first time Foster heard from Maligi and since then, the relationship has really grown with SMU’s top recruiter.
“It’s great. He’s very understandable,” Foster said. “The way he talks to me is very relatable because he’s younger so he can speak with us and talk with us about things on our level so it’s real good.”
Some would question why Foster would decommit from Rice with a torn ACL, but since his recovery is going better than expected, Foster wants the chance to be recruited. “I feel like I didn’t get a chance to venture out and see what else was out there for me,” Foster said. “I didn’t want to make a decision that I wasn’t really sure with. It wasn’t anything against Rice, I just didn’t get the chance to have any other school recruit me because I didn’t play in the July live period.”
Foster will return to his team in the middle of district play and is looking forward to getting back on the court to play. Brown touched on his style of coaching with Foster.
“He lets the players play. He’s going to coach them though and tell them the right things to do,” Foster said. “They have players that can play and as long as they do what he asks, their program can go really far.”
Foster said he couldn’t say whether his visit to SMU would result in a commitment.