Casto talks about academics, Bennett & more

DeANGELO CASTO, the high-flyin' shot-blocker from two-time state champion Ferris, has a critical put-back to make before he becomes a Coug, he told CF.C Thursday after signing his letter of intent with Washington State. The 6-8, 235-pound forward says he has some academic issues to take care of. But he's close. "It's literally right there for me, just barely out of the fingertips," he said.

Casto said he needs to raise his SAT score only slightly and to continue to get good marks in his course work. In short, he's not as far away as some people have speculated. And WSU has obviously done its homework on his situation and deemed it a favorable one.

"We went through all my academics exactly, on point for what I have to do and what the SAT score has to be and all that ... it's literally right there for me, just barely out of the fingertips. I just have a couple more things to do, tie them all together and I've got it and will be up at WSU in the summer," said Casto.

Casto said he plans to enroll at WSU for the summer session that begins on June 16.

Casto said his decision to become a Cougar was made easier by Cougar head man Tony Bennett and assistants Ben Johnson and Ron Sanchez.

"Just seeing what Tony has done with the players and the program, he's done so much with it," said Casto. "And then when I sat down and had long conversations with Ben and with Ron, and then the conversation with Tony. He's a strong Christian man who believes in great things and he really believes in the program, he believes in building it and making it great.

"And I wanted to be part of something great and he really believes in me..and that confidence from him makes me want (to succeed) that much more...Ron Sanchez, he came up numerous times to see me play and I can honestly say those two guys, Ron Sanchez and Ben Johnson, have done so much for me."

Some recruitniks have compared Casto favorably to Ivory Clark, with Casto being bigger and more skilled. Casto, who along with Cougar football signee Jared Karstetter, led Ferris to back-to-back undefeated seasons and Class 4A championships, says WSU also focused on his character.

"The main thing the coaches have been telling me is just character, how I present myself," said Casto. " ...And you can tell just by the way Tony is that's a huge concept to be able present yourself well and be really respectful, really courteous."

Casto's travels have been well documented in the Spokane and Seattle press. He's changed schools four times since his freshman year -- from Freeman to Ferris to Franklin, and back to Ferris. A difficult thing to go through so many moves, but he has one more move left. This one, he's very much looking forward to, said Casto.

"I just want to thank the supporters I have in my life...As much as I've been though since freshman year, and even younger ages, just going through the rough stages of life to finally getting to this point. It's been a rough road and it's been tough and it's not done yet. But it is so worth it and I'm so happy to end up at WSU."

The last Spokane native to sign and play with the Cougars came back in the early '90s -- Rob Corkrum (1990-95) came to WSU out of Shadle Park.

"We are excited to have DeAngelo sign with us," Bennett said in a statement released early Thursday evening. "He is a great addition to our fall signing class. He played in a tremendous high school basketball program at Ferris High and we are looking forward to watching DeAngelo reach his full potential."

The crimson connection with Casto began to heat up two weeks ago -- and really went into overdrive on April 9, when Stephen Sauls was granted a release from his WSU scholarship.

"He wasn't going to come back because of migraines so he's back home and that was my scholarship that opened up," said Casto.

NOTABLE:
  • As a senior Casto averaged 14.6 points, 10.0 rebounds and 4.0 blocks per game, including 18.7 points per game in the state playoffs. As a junior he averaged 14.8 points and 12.2 rebounds per game.

  • Casto's signing brings WSU's 2008 class of recruits to six. And it arguably is the finest class in school history. Casto is joining James Watson, Marcus Capers, Michael Harthun, Nick Witherill and Klay Thompson.


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