Appleby, Romar come to terms

There's nothing like some home cooking to lure a son home. It wasn't exactly the pot roast and mashed potatoes that turned Ryan Appleby's decision into a homecoming, but he'll take the perks while he can still get them. Appleby chose to transfer to the University of Washington Tuesday after a conversation with men's basketball coach Lorenzo Romar.

"I'm going to U-Dub (Washington). I spoke with Coach Romar today," Appleby told from Gainesville, Florida, where Ryan is finishing his studies at the University of Florida. He was released from his scholarship last Thursday, allowing him to reconsider other options after sitting out the 2004-2005 year.

"I told Coach Romar that I'm looking for a school to transfer to and if I could I would like to play for Washington," Appleby said. According to Appleby, Romar told him he was looking for a point guard and that if he wanted to come back to Seattle he would welcome him with open arms. It was the second such conversation between Ryan and Romar, the first occurred after Appleby's release.

"We just talked about the possibility of playing for Washington, nothing much more than that," Ryan said.

"After Will Conroy leaves they will need a point guard and I'm a perfect fit. I fit in well with a good running game, distributing on the break and pushing the ball up the court. I love the up-tempo game, pushing the ball. I can create for others or shoot it.

"The season they had was also part of why I wanted to come back. When I was being recruited by Washington (out of high school), they didn't have room for a point guard and it wasn't a good fit back then."

The 6-3, 170 PG Appleby averaged 24 points and nine assists a game as a senior at Stanwood in 2002-03, earning all-state honors. He played 23 games at point guard for Billy Donovan and the Gators this season, starting one game and averaging 1.0 points with 27 assists and 22 turnovers.

Ryan has a reputation of being a real gym rat. "I just love playing basketball," he said. "When I was in high school, I would get to the gym at 6 in the morning and then I would find a place to play after school. I love to work."

Appleby will sign a scholarship agreement with Washington April 14th, the first day he can sign. He will stay in Gainesville until the end of the quarter, which will finish up at the end of the month. He'll then come home, without any firm summer plans before enrolling in school in September.

"I know I'll be working out at the Emerald City Basketball Academy for sure," he said, referring to his old AAU stomping grounds. Ryan used to play on the Emerald City Pioneers with current UW player Hans Gasser. "I know Hans really well, but I haven't talked to him since I went to Florida," said Appleby.

And about that pot roast...

"I just want a home-cooked meal," Ryan said about the thing he's going to enjoy most about coming back home. "I don't care what it is, just something home-cooked."

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