Thorpe Chooses Penn State
By: Steve Brodzinski - Pittsburgh Basketball Report
The top player in the WPIAL's class of 2013 made his college choice today. Geno Thorpe, the dynamic
6'3" point guard from Shaler Area HS decided that he will play college basketball at Penn State
University. This may come as somewhat of a surprise to anyone that has been following Thorpe's
recruiting, as many thought Pitt was the clear front-runner. In fact, after conducting a Q & A with
Thorpe back on August 2nd of this year, he didn't even mention Penn State as a school that was
recruiting him. Yet, today on his 17th birthday, Thorpe decided that he wanted to play for new head
coach Pat Chambers and the Nittany Lions.
After speaking with Thorpe earlier this evening, it was evident that Chambers had won him over in a
short amount of time. "I've spent a lot of time talking with him about attitude, character, and my life's
plan, and I feel that I can accomplish my goals with him at Penn State." It may have also helped that
Chambers was well aware of Thorpe's daily routine. Knowing that Thorpe lifts early in the morning
before school on Tuesday's and Thursday's, Chambers decided to call Thorpe in route around 6:00 am,
in order to be the first to wish him a Happy Birthday."We have already formed kind of a bond, and that
phone call just showed what type of person he is," said Thorpe about Chambers.
One tough phone call that Thorpe had to make today, was to another person who he had formed a close
bond with, Pitt assistant Brandon Knight. Knight had been recruiting Thorpe since his freshman year. "It
was very tough to call Coach Knight and tell him that I had committed to Penn State," said Thorpe. Pitt
and Wisconsin ended up in Thorpe's final three choices, but at the end of the day Penn State prevailed.
Thorpe had taken two unoffical visits to Penn State and really liked what he saw. "I really liked the
atmosphere, the entire basketball staff, and the type of people in the basketball program," said Thorpe.
"Plus, my Mom really liked everything about the school and basketball program, and she is very hard to
please," Thorpe said with a laugh. It also helps that Penn State is in need of a point guard, and had talked
to Thorpe about having an immediate impact as a freshman. "It just felt like the right fit, and the fact that
they feel that I can come in and play as a freshman also helped."
Thorpe will now be able to play his junior and senior basketball seasons without having to worry about
the recruiting process. While he cannot sign a national letter of intent until November of his senior year,
it is still a huge weight off of his shoulders. "It takes a lot of pressure off of me, and it will help me
focus on getting better everyday and trying to win at Shaler." Thorpe averaged 17.5 points per game last
season at Shaler.