Darryl Webster, a 6-foot-7 all-Metropolitan basketball player from Coolidge High School, said yesterday he will attend George Washington University next season, thus becoming the first recent star from the Interhigh League to choose to play for the Colonials.
Webster, a power forward who averaged 22 points and 14 rebounds this season and played in the McDonald's Capital Classic, said he chose GW from a final list of four schools that also included Pittsburgh, Rutgers and Jacksonville. "They don't have as good a team," he said. "I want to build their team up and be a pioneer, so to speak. If I go there, maybe some of the other kids in the city will go there, too."
Webster is the fourth player to verbally commit to GW this season. The national signing date is April 14. Webster is the second D.C. player this week to announce his intention of going to GW, following Carroll forward Chester Wood. Historically, GW has been unable to recruit players from the Interhigh League and Metro Conference. Howard Mathews, an all-Met from Mackin, was the last city player to sign with GW, in 1969.
"Signing Darryl Webster to play along with Chester Wood, Troy Webster (a 6-4 all-state guard from New Jersey), Michael Brown (a 6-9 freshman who led GW in scoring and rebounding this season) and the other players we have makes us a team that can be competitive with any team in the country," said Coach Gerry Gimelstob, 13-14 in his first season.
"But more importantly, it shows to me GW can effectively recruit in the Washington area against the best schools in the country," he said. "To me, that's the most significant thing . . . I'd like to congratulate Georgetown, not only for the great year they've had, but for what's possible for the D.C. area. We've got the potential with schools like American U. and Maryland to be as good as the Big Four in North Carolina if we can keep the local kids at home."
Webster said he will attend summer school in an Education Opportunity Program "so I can handle academics during the school year."
Webster said his friends have told him he's "crazy" to attend GW: "They said GW gets no publicity, will not be on TV and doesn't have a very good team. I told them if I went there, we'd be good and be on TV. They didn't talk about academics."