Star Guard Chooses St. Joseph's Delonte West, Who Gave The Hawks An Oral Commitment, Led His Team To A County Title In Maryland Last Season.

Posted: October 10, 2000

St. Joseph's University yesterday received an oral commitment from Delonte West, a 6-foot-3 guard from Eleanor Roosevelt High School in Greenbelt, Md.

As a junior, West averaged 16 points, 7.5 rebounds and three steals per game as Roosevelt went 21-4 and won the Prince Georges County AAAA basketball championship. He shot 55 percent from the field and 78 percent from the free-throw line.

Roosevelt coach Glen Farello described West as an excellent long-range shooter with many offensive skills.

"When he visited St. Joe's, Delonte felt really comfortable," Farello said. "He said there was a real family atmosphere about the school.

"The best way to describe Delonte is that he's a winner. He'll compete against anybody. He was the most valuable player on our team last year, and he was also our best post player. But I see him playing on the wing at St. Joe's."

According to Farello, other schools that showed interest in West were Siena, Manhattan, George Mason, Towson and St. Bonaventure.

West is one of two Division I prospects at Roosevelt. The other is 6-5 guard Eddie Basden, who has made an oral commitment to Massachusetts.

The NCAA's early signing period for basketball recruits begins Nov. 8 and lasts a week.

St. Joe's has three more scholarships available for next season's incoming class.

The Hawks will begin practice on Saturday. They have four starters back, including leading scorers Marvin O'Connor and Na'im Crenshaw, from a team that went 13-16 overall and 7-9 in the Atlantic Ten Conference. Jameer Nelson, a highly touted point guard from Chester, heads the group of five incoming freshmen.

Midnight Madness, marking the opening practice at St. Joseph's, will begin at 9 p.m. on Oct. 19 and have a Mardi Gras theme.

The Hawks will open their season on Nov. 17 against South Carolina State in the America's Youth Classic at Vanderbilt University in Nashville. They will play Vanderbilt on Nov. 18 and Western Carolina on Nov. 19.

Ray Parrillo's e-mail address is rparrillo@phillynews.com

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