With the seat under Lorenzo Romar starting to heat up, the longest-tenured head coach in the Pac-12 needs to start earning some wins on the recruiting trail.
On Tuesday night, he did just that, as 4-star shooting guard Dejounte Murray announced his commitment to Washington via Twitter:
Murray, who is ranked by 247Sports as the 54th-best recruit and No. 1 player out of the state of Washington, joins a 2015 Huskies class that already features 4-star power forward Marquese Chriss and 3-star point guard David Crisp—the latter being Murray's teammate at Rainier Beach.
Oregon, Gonzaga and Arizona were the closest schools in the mix for Murray, but he opted to stay at home in Seattle.
Standing at 6'4" and 180 pounds, Murray is a long wing with the ability to score in a variety of ways. He can take defenders off the bounce, but he's also capable of stepping beyond the three-point line and knocking down shots.
He should fit in perfectly in Romar's uptempo system, which has produced a bevy of NBA guards in recent years.
ESPN's Joel Francisco noted the importance of this verbal commitment:
Dejounte Murray to Washington..must get for Romar....wiry scorer who is much-improved...Scouts take coming soon— Joel Francisco (@JoelFranESPN) June 4, 2014
Although Romar has taken the Huskies to six NCAA tournaments in his 12 years in Montlake, things have begun to deteriorate. Washington has missed the Big Dance three years in a row, and the last two seasons (35-31) have been the worst such stretch since Romar took over.
To make things worse, the 2014 class was less than inspiring, and a propensity to let Seattle-area talent—namely Zach LaVine—slip away has only increased the frustration.
However, light is beginning to show at the end of the tunnel.
The Huskies, often a team built on their backcourt, are set at the guard position with Nigel Williams-Goss, Andrew Andrews, Darin Johnson and now Murray all potentially on the roster for the 2015-16 season (although Williams-Goss has already flirted with the NBA).
The frontcourt still needs some improvement, but with this get, Romar and his staff are moving in the right direction.