Jontay Porter, the son of Washington Huskies men’s basketball assistant Michael Porter Sr. and the younger brother of star recruit Michael Porter Jr., used his Twitter page Friday to announce that he is no longer committed to UW after the Wednesday firing of coach Lorenzo Romar.
Some have speculated that Jontay Porter might reclassify to join Porter Jr. in college next season, though he is still considered a 2018 recruit and has not signed a letter of intent.
A junior this season at Nathan Hale High School, Jontay Porter teamed with his brother — a now-in-limbo UW signee, the state player of the year and perhaps the nation’s top recruit — to help the Raiders go undefeated and win the class 3A state championship.
Porter Jr. has said publicly that he made his commitment to Romar — his godfather — and the UW coaching staff, and not necessarily to the school, meaning he is almost certain to request a release from the national letter of intent he signed in November.
Athletic director Jen Cohen has said she will grant the release of any signee who meets UW’s new coach and decides he no longer wants to play for the Huskies.
It is that Porter Sr., whom UW paid $300,000 for his one year as an assistant, will land an assistant job elsewhere and, presumably, take Michael Jr. (and Jontay, eventually) with him to that school.
Reports have surfaced connecting Porter Sr. to the staff of new Missouri coach Cuonzo Martin. Per the terms of Porter Sr.’s two-year contract with UW, the school must pay his monthly salary for up to a year if he does not become employed elsewhere (assuming he is not retained by the new UW coach).
The future of the rest of UW’s 2017 recruiting class — Garfield High guards Jaylen Nowell and Daejon Davis, North Carolina point guard Blake Harris and Mali-born forward Mamoudou Diarra — remains uncertain.
None of them has announced whether he plans to play for UW, though such decisions might not come until the school hires a new coach.
In semis, Whitman suffers first loss
Whitman’s unbeaten run came to an end in the NCAA Division III semifinals when the Blues lost, 91-85, to Babson College of Massachusetts on Friday in Salem, Virginia.
Tim Howell led the Blues (31-1) with 23 points and Jase Harrison added 19. Austin Butler and Joey Hewitt both scored 12 points for Whitman, and JoJo Wiggins had 10.
Butler led the Blues in rebounds with 10.
Joey Flannery topped the Beavers (30-2) with 24 points, with Nick Comenale (22 points), Isaiah Nelsen (20) and Charlie Rice (19) also scored in double figures. Rice had 12 rebounds and Flannery had 10.
Whitman led 45-20 during the first half, and held a 51-47 advantage at intermission. Babson outrebounded the Blues, 45-26.
Babson will play Augustana of Illinois (24-8) for the championship on Saturday in Virginia. Augustana defeated Williams of Massachusetts, 90-79, in the other semifinal.
Alford keeps eyes on NCAA prize
UCLA coach Steve Alford says he’s focused on the NCAA Tournament, not the job opening at his alma mater, Indiana.
Alford played four seasons in Bloomington and led the Hoosiers to the 1987 NCAA title under coach Bobby Knight. His name was among the first to come up when Indiana coach Tom Crean was fired Thursday.
“That was 30 years ago,” Alford said at a news conference before his third-seeded Bruins defeated No. 14-seed Kent State, 97-80, on Friday in Sacramento, California. “I was part of that. I stood on stage with a great group of guys and won a national championship. ... So, obviously, all that comes up.”
Alford coached at Southwest Missouri State, Iowa and New Mexico before joining UCLA in 2013.
“I love UCLA. I love Los Angeles,” he said. “We’ve got things going at a very high level now and we’re very excited about it.”
The Associated Press contributed to this notebook.