Is this the Cougs' future point man?

AFTER OFFERING Central Arizona point guard DeAndre Mathieu last month, Ken Bone recently offered another point from the JUCO ranks -- this one closer to home. The player in question just finished up his junior college career in the state of Washington and had been flying under the radar until the Cougs came calling. CF.C talked to him about his recruitment, visit plans and more.

Edmonds Community College guard Ricardo Maxwell, a 5-10, 180-pound redshirt sophomore, led his team to the NWAACC championship game this season. He said Washington State offered in early March.

"They offered me a scholarship right after our championship game and it was awesome because I didn't even really know they were after me," Maxwell said. "I had been getting a lot of offers from a lot of smaller schools and to get one from Washington State was unexpected. I'm trying to keep my options open, but there a school I'm definitely hoping to visit and check out."

In addition to WSU, Maxwell holds offers from Xavier, Idaho, Portland State and several Division II programs.

Maxwell said he doesn't have a favorite yet, adding that there are certain programs that he is in the process of scheduling official visits with.

"I'm going to try and visit WSU and Maryland Eastern-Shores," Maxwell said. "I might visit Chaminade, Portland State and Idaho as well. It's something I still need to figure out. I'm not sure where I want to go and to be honest, this whole process has been kind of overwhelming. It's something I'm going to need to decide soon on though."

Indeed. The regular signing period for hoops begins April 17 and the Cougs have maybe one spot and a pool of candidates.

MAXWELL'S ROAD TO success has been an exercise in dedication.

The Cincinnati native graduated from Withrow University High in 2010 and then following graduation moved to the Seattle area with his mentor from Ohio, who helped him enroll at North Seattle Community College. Maxwell played in the first four games of the season for NSCC, but then had his year cut short because of an ankle injury. He worked his way back and the next season, Maxwell suffered another ankle injury during preseason practices, which sidelined him for the entire year.

He then enrolled at Edmonds this past season and bucked the injury trend - he didn't miss a game.

Maxwell averaged 20.57 ppg and 5.32 assists in 28 games this season according to the official stat book of the NWACC. In Edmond's championship loss to Chemeketa, he finished with 19 points and nine assists.

"I've been talking with the WSU coaches about my game and they like my style of play and how I like to push the ball up the court," Maxwell said. "They think I can fit into their system and I could play a major role for them right away. We talked about how it's a great school too and I can really focus on my game.

"I'm from the city, but I want to go somewhere where I won't get into any trouble and can just concentrate on getting better on the floor."

ALTHOUGH HE NOW has only two years of eligibility left, Maxwell said he feels confident he could petition for and receive a third year through the NCAA because he lost two years to injury, playing in only four games his first two years at NSCC.

Maxwell, who was in Cincinnati this week training, returned to Seattle on Thursday afternoon. He added that several members (he wasn't sure who) of the WSU coaching staff were going to be on hand at an open gym at Edmonds on Friday evening.

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