Tacoma PG goes WSU over James Madison

A POINT GUARD WITH speed and a desire to play defense, too. His prep coach says he's NFL cornerback type of fast. And today, the former James Madison commit signed with Ken Bone and Washington State.

ESPN says Andre Winston is "one of the better sleepers in all the Pacific Northwest. He is a combo-guard with a growing point guard mentality. His frame is decent for the next level and should fill out well enough to compete at the level. He has the athleticism to get by his opponents."

Winston verbally committed to James Madison, the Colonial League school in Northern Virginia, back in August and is believed to have signed an LOI with them in November. Winston was quoted as recently as a month ago as heading to the Dukes. In a press release, WSU said he signed a financial aid agreement (FAA) with the school, which is different than a letter of intent. NCAA rules prohibit a player from signing two LOIs in the same recruiting cycle, so the FAA with WSU suggests that James Madison released him from his LOI, allowing him to play immediately at WSU.

James Madison was Winston's only offer entering his senior year at Lakes, though WSU, Nevada, Portland State and others had been lurking.

SPEED IS THE NAME OF Winston's game.

"He is so fast, our football coach always says he would be a perfect NFL cornerback because he accelerates so fast," Lakes head coach Jo Jo Rodriguez told KING 5 News last year.

Andre has a 3.2 GPA and says he loves to play defense. He's also a coach's son -- his dad, Andre Sr., is a Lakes assistant coach.

Winston (6-foot-1, 160), set a state tournament record this year with 119 points and 45 field goals in four games, breaking marks set back in 1994. He scored 36 points in the Lancers' 74-61 victory over Glacier Park in the quarterfinals and added 21 points in the team's 63-62 loss to eventual state champion Union. Winston added 33 points in the third-place game as Lakes defeated Shadle Park, 76-68. Lakes finished with a 23-5 mark.

Just this past weekend, Winston helped lead Washington to its fourth-straight victory over Oregon in the 2010 Les Schwab Northwest Shootout. He scored a team-high 24 points in the state's 116-109 victory on April 17.

As a senior, Winston averaged 20.8 points, 3.6 assists, 2.0 rebounds and 1.5 steals a game.

"Andre is an outstanding young man of high character coming from a successful Lakes High School program," Bone said in a press release. "He is a quick point guard with the ability to score baskets, but at the same time can see the floor and is unselfish. Andre will be a great addition to our backcourt next year."

He was named the Associated Press Washington State 3A Co-Player of the Year. Winston also picked up first-team all-State honors from the AP. His junior campaign, Winston averaged 19 points, five assists and four steals, and was named second-team All-State.

Winston joins an incoming class that includes Washington's 2A player of the year Patrick Simon (6-8, 205, F, Ephrata, Wash./Ephrata HS) and one of the nation's top junior college scorers, Faisal Aden (6-4, 185, G, San Diego, Calif./Hillsborough CC-Fla.)

The Cougars have one more scholarship available, but it is not known whether they plan to use it in this recruiting cycle or wait until next season.


  • Winston's dad played on Garfield High's state championship team of 1991.

  • Winston's younger brother Isaac is also a standout basketballer at Lakes.

  • Winston is the second consecutive 3A Player of the Year from the state of Washington to sign with WSU. Anthony Brown of Spokane played sparingly for WSU this past season and is now transferring.

  • Last month the Seattle Times picked a video clip of Winston for its Dunk of the Day. Here's THE CLIP.

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