The Moody Coliseum experience is nothing new to SMU signee Jarrey Foster, but the environment at the Valentine’s Day showdown with the defending champs wowed the wing from Houston’s North Shore High School.
Foster brought his brother, grandmother and mother along, and they experienced ESPN College GameDay’s visit to the Hilltop and perhaps the loudest, most enthusiastic crowd Moody has seen since its renovation. He had his sights set on coming to this game for a while.
“I’d been looking forward to this game since I committed,” Foster said. “I’ve been ready for it. It’s a big game because of GameDay so it’s really exciting…(The game) was great. It was what I thought it would be. They came out with a lot of fire and a lot of intensity, and it showed on the scoreboard. It was so loud too. I had a headache just sitting in the stands. The fans are crazy, they’re so supportive.”
SMU basketball is in a spotlight it hasn’t seen in a long while, and Foster is excited to come to SMU at such an important time with a special team.
“It’s great, starting with coach Brown and playing under him,” Foster said. “Plus the great team we’ll have next year, everybody’s playing hard and playing together, and I like that. I feel like I fit in very well. They’re at their peak right now, ranked (then) No. 25, and they’re going to go even higher with me coming in next year.”
While playing in the spotlight on a Larry Brown team is exciting, Foster said he is most excited just to get on the court with his future teammates.
“Just playing with the team, everybody likes to play together, they play fast and they’re looking to win every game, they’re not looking to ball hog or anything like that,” the 6-foot-5, 180-pounder said. “Everybody’s playing together.”
Foster’s itch to play is understandable, since he last suited up on June 13, the day he tore his ACL while playing AAU ball for M&E Elite. The injury ended a successful AAU campaign in which he was averaging 18 points per game. Three months earlier, Foster was named the Class 5A tournament final MVP. North Shore won the state title behind his 16-point, 10-rebound performance. He announced in January that he will not return to the court for any of his senior season, but instead, he’s been tirelessly rehabbing.
“It’s really tough (not playing). Once I tore my ACL, I kind of knew I wouldn’t play high school this year,” Foster said. “It took a toll on me at the beginning, but I’ve started to live through SMU because knowing I’ll be here next year, I’m starting to look forward to getting ready for college ball. Rehabbing every day, that’s my motivation to make sure I’m ready to come here and play next year.”
Foster won’t waste any time getting to Dallas. He plans to be at SMU right after graduation on June 1 and enroll in summer classes.
“I can’t wait, this is going to be real fun,” Foster said. “This is going to be great. We’re going to be doing real big things next year.”