Coach Cross Gets his First Commitment

Since being hired on April 11th as the new men's basketball coach at the University of Toledo, Gene Cross has put a shot of excitement into the Rocket fanbase. Yesterday Coach Cross secured his first commitment as the Rockets head coach, another reason for Rocket fans to be excited about the future of the men's basketball program.

Since being hired on April 11th as the new men's basketball coach at the University of Toledo, Gene Cross has put a shot of excitement into the Rocket fanbase. Yesterday Coach Cross secured his first commitment as the Rockets head coach, another reason for Rocket fans to be excited about the future of the men's basketball program.

That commitment came from shooting guard Stephen Albrecht. The 6-3, 170 pound high school senior from Crown Point, IN accepted a scholarship offer on Monday and will sign his LOI Wednesday morning.

"Yes, Stephen has received an offer from Toledo and has accepted it," Crown Point head basketball coach Clint Swan told Rocket Digest earlier today. "They (Toledo) are overnighting his letter of intent and Stephen should be signing the LOI tomorrow."

Former head coach Stan Joplin started recruiting Albrecht over a year ago when he was a junior in high school. After Gene Cross took over as head coach at Toledo, he continued the recruitment and offered Stephen a scholarship.

"Recent inquiries and interest at the time of his offer from Toledo included TCU, Oregon State, Evansville, Austin Peay, Missouri State, Valparaiso, and Indiana," said Swan.

According to Swan, Albrecht has scholarship offers from Toledo, Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and Air Force.

Albrecht averaged 17.9 points, 2.0 assists, and 3.3 rebounds per game as a senior at Crown Point High School this past season. He also shot 89% from the foul line.

Stephen is known for being a good outside shooter. "As a junior, he was primarily a three-point shooter who could shoot coming off screens and in transition," said Swan. He added, "as a senior we put the ball in his hands and allowed him to create more off the bounce. He showed the ability to run the point and score driving his man and pulling up." Swan said that Stephen was their best perimeter defender as well.

As good of a basketball player that Albrecht is, he is even a better student. "He maintains a 4.2 grade point average on a 4.0 scale and has aspirations of going to medical school," said Swan. Obviously the fact that the University of Toledo has a medical school played a huge role in his recruitment.

"Stephen Albrecht was a dream to coach, a classic throw-back, not only on the court, but off it as well," Swan told Rocket Digest when asked about Stephen abilities on and off the court. He added, "he is polite, coachable, and truly a class act who represented Crown Point High School in a most noble fashion. The people of Toledo will fall in love with him. I truly believe he will excel there."

Coach Swan reminisced about Albrecht's abilities on the court. "Some games, he proved to be virtually un-guardable. He scored 32 on defending state champ and #5 ranked East Chicago Central, who had Angel Garcia who signed with Memphis, with most of his points coming off the bounce."

Coach Swan also rememberd a performance during his junior year against the top team in the state. He scored 32 on Robbie Hummel (All Big Ten at Purdue this past season) when we beat Valparaiso who was #1 in the state."

Anyway you slice it, Toledo is picking up a quality player that meets a lot of the needs that the basketball program has. He is a good outside shooter, an excellent foul shooter, and a very good defender. He has very good size for the guard position at 6-3, and also has the ability to help out at point guard.

Coach Cross and his staff did a fantastic job with their first commitment into the Rocket basketball program.

The Rocket basketball program is in good hands with Coach Cross and staff, and I am not the only one that feels that way.

"I was beyond impressed with Coach Cross and his coaching staff's approach to Stephen's recruitment," Coach Swan told Rocket Digest. He continued, "He and Assistant Coach Brian Lloyd worked tirelessly in evaluating whether Stephen was a fit for the Toledo program. They talked, not only to me, but to others regarding his ability and character. They followed the letter of the law in regards to regulations, frequently pointing out to me when they could and could not contact Stephen and/or his family. I am so happy to see a very special player of mine move on to such a classy group of people. Toledo basketball is in good hands."

Yes, Toledo basketball is indeed in good hands and Rocket fans have a lot to be excited about. Welcome to the Rocket family Stephen!



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