Not in his wildest dreams did Tallahassee (Fla.) Community College point guard El Ellis ever think he would commit to a school he’d never visited, but Wednesday afternoon Ellis did just that, committing to Louisville over Oregon, Texas Tech, North Carolina Central, Georgia, Connecticut, Florida and others.
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“I built a great relationship with Coach (Chris) Mack and Coach (Dino) Gaudio,” Ellis said. “Throughout the whole process they were on me hard telling me how much they needed me. The ACC, that’s the best conference in college basketball so having the opportunity to be on that stage, that’s amazing.”
Ellis also pointed to the fact that playing in the ACC would likely give him multiple games in his home city of Durham, N.C., depending on scheduling; Duke is located in Durham and North Carolina, Wake Forest and N.C. State are all within an hour drive.
This past season, Ellis was named Panhandle Conference Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year after averaging 14.3 points, 4.4 assists and four rebounds a game. Ellis shot 48.3 percent from the field, 41.4 percent from three and 83.9 percent from the free-throw line.
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“The staff was so excited when I told them,” Ellis said. “They’ve been recruiting me since February so to hear me say that I’m coming they were very excited. I always thought I would be the kid to go on my visit and make my decision on the visit. This pandemic has been crazy. I’m so happy to have it off my shoulders, now I can focus on having a great year at Tallahassee.”