Vermont Scores with Patella
Vermont Academy and BABC senior Bailey Patella made a verbal commitment to Vermont on Tuesday night, announcing his decision via his twitter account.
His commitment came roughly 48 hours after his official visit to Vermont's campus concluded over the weekend.
A Western Mass native who flew under the radar for most of his high school career, Patella is a late bloomer who has continued to make major strides in his game.
He missed a good portion of the spring EYBL circuit with injury but returned earlier than expected to help BABC extend their national leading streak of Peach Jam appearances.
This fall, he's taken his game to unprecedented levels as he's improved the consistency of his outside jumper and started to play above the rim with increasing frequency and explosiveness.
"Bailey has developed as both a player and a student during his two years at Vermont Academy," head coach Alex Popp said. "He's a proven winner in the NEPSAC and EYBL and we know he will help UVM win a lot of games over the next four years."
Patella projects as an immediate impact player for the Catamounts and will have an opportunity to step right into the void created by Kurt Steidl's graduation.
A long and athletic wing who can take the ball off the glass and start the break, get all types of steals and deflections defensively, and is a good finisher around the rim, not just with his ability to dunk but also make tough lay-ups, Patella has a wealth of tools at his disposal.
Perhaps most exciting for Vermont fans is the fact that he is only still just scratching the surface of his potential as he continues to fill out his frame, develop his three-point range and improve his ball-handling and playmaking abilities off the bounce.
Patella helped VA win a NEPSAC Class AA championship last year as a junior and figures to be a pillar of the team's hopes to repeat in 2016-2017. He joins Marcus Santos Silva (VCU), Christian David (Butler) and Jordan Nwora (Louisville) to become the fourth member of Vermont Academy's 2017 class to accept a division I scholarship.
He and Santos Silva also join Justin Mazzula (George Washington), Jalyn Hinton (Jacksonville), Ryan Layman (Bentley) and Terrell Brown (Pittsburgh) to become the 6th member of BABC's 2017 class to accept a division I scholarship and 7th overall counting Tyree Robinson out of the junior college ranks.