Devontae Watson is Temple’s first basketball recruit for the Class of 2012.
The 6-foot-10 senior power forward/center at Lincoln Park Performing Arts Charter in Midland gave the Owls an oral commitment on Monday. He chose Temple over scholarship offers from St. Joseph’s, Dayton, Florida State, Kent State and Akron.
Watson, who averaged 16 points, 18 rebounds and 10 blocks last season, took an official visit to Temple over the Labor Day weekend and attended the Mayor’ Cup game on Thursday. He is regarded as the second-best center prospect in Pennsylvania by Hoop Scoop’s Allen Rubin.
“He's an outstanding shot blocker, a very good rebounder, and he's a quick leaper who gets off his feet in a hurry,” Rubin told Owlscoop.com. “He's very energetic, nonstop, plays with a lot of energy and runs the floor well. His offense has improved from his junior year to now.
"His upside is unlimited. Before his career is over, he could develop into an all-league center. He comes from a well-coached high school program, and (Temple assistant coach) Dave Duke did a great job recruiting him. He's been on him since Day One."
Watson finished with 13 points and 13 rebounds in last season’s PIAA Class A state championship loss to Math, Civics and Sciences.
After making his decision, he decided to forgo scheduled official visits planned to Florida State, Kent State, St. Joseph's and Dayton.
The Owls are also in the mix for St. Joseph’s of Metuchen small forward Quenton DeCousey.
- Keith Pompey