Smotrycz is a Wolverine!
Last week we told you that Evan Smotrycz’ stock was rising quickly after having a terrific first season at New Hampton. This week comes the proof as Smotrycz is now headed to the Big Ten and the University of Michigan.
The Wolverines have had a consistent presence at New Hampton throughout the year as two different assistant coaches had been in to watch individual work-outs. Last week head coach John Beilein came in to see an open gym. He liked what he saw so much that he offered a scholarship on the spot. A week later, Smotrycz accepted and made a verbal commitment.
“I was trying not to jump the gun,” Smotrycz explained, “but from the moment he offered I knew that was where I wanted to be. I took the week, talked it over with my parents and Coach Hutchins and then made it official.”
While Michigan may have just decided to extend their offer, they have been actively recruiting the 6’9” forward for quite some time now. In fact, Smotrycz visited their campus earlier this fall on an unofficial visit.
“They’ve always been high on my list because they have a great coaching staff and their style of play is conducive to me being the best player I can.”
Michigan utilizes a Princeton style offense that is ideally suited for big players with high skill sets. At 6’9”, Smotrycz fits the mold to a tee.
“I think Michigan is the perfect place for a guy with his size and skill package,” said Smotrycz longtime AAU coach with the Mass Rivals, Vin Pastore. “I’m very happy for him.”
Pastore and current New Hampton head coach Pete Hutchins are two of the people that Smotrycz was quick to credit for his development.
“I’ve improved so much since coming to New Hampton,” he said. “It was rough at the beginning of the season because I came down with mono. But once I got healthy and was able to get on the floor I started to see the results right away. Every day I was going up against guys like Chris Gaston in practice and then getting into the weight room with Coach Hutchins.”
As for New Hampton head coach Pete Hutchins, he’s certainly proud of his junior star, although quick to point out that his work is only half done.
“This is a great accomplishment for Evan and now the work really starts,” said Hutchins. “It’s great to have somebody believe in you like Coach Beilein and now he has to continue to get better every day, have a great senior year, and get ready for the Big Ten.”
Smotrycz selected Michigan over Stanford, Virginia, Oregon State, and Arizona State.