Vandals Sign Colton Basketball Player To NLI - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Vandals Sign Colton Basketball Player To NLI

Don Verlin is pleased with the signing of his new Colton star (Photo: Ilya Pinchuk). Don Verlin is pleased with the signing of his new Colton star (Photo: Ilya Pinchuk).

by Idaho Athletic Media Relations

The Idaho men’s basketball team added some local flavor to its future roster when it signed Colton High School senior Jake Straughan to a National Letter of Intent.

Straughan averaged 26 points, seven assists, six rebounds and three steals per game as a junior for Colton High last season, topping out with a season-high of 42 points in a game.

“As he grows up and makes the adjustment from where he’s playing now -- a small school in Washington -- to Division I basketball, he’ll be an excellent player,” Idaho coach Don Verlin said. “If I wasn’t convinced that he could make the transition, then obviously we wouldn’t have signed him. It’s going to be an adjustment, but it is for every freshman coming in. His character and his work ethic and all the things that Jake Straughan stands for will win out in the long run, without question.”

Straughan is a 6-foot-1 guard who owns a 3.97 grade point average at Colton High, in the town with just more than 400 people.

“It’s the next four or five years of my life, and I’m excited to go to the University of Idaho,” Straughan said. “They have a great program, it fits me really well and I’m really excited.”

“We’re happy to sign another Northwest kid, that’s important,” Verlin added. “We’ve worked really hard in the Northwest. It was a dream of Jake’s to play Division I basketball and Idaho being the closest Division I school to him, it’s a win-win for everybody. I’m excited to get a good, young local player. Sometimes small-town kids get overlooked and we didn’t overlook Jake.”

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