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WSU basketball loses top recruit Roberto Gittens for next season

It may be football season, but some pretty major news for WSU basketball came in on Tuesday.

NCAA Basketball: Washington at Washington State James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

The signing of 4-star basketball recruit Roberto Gittens was met with fanfare when the Cougs made the announcement in May - and for good reason. The guard out of Foss high school in Tacoma was named Washington 2A player of the year. At one time he was committed to Boise State, but reopened his the recruiting process in April and decided to join Ernie Kent at Washington State.

Gittens was the first 4-star recruit to sign with WSU since Klay Thompson and many expected him to start as a freshman on a depleted Cougar roster. Our own Jeff Nusser was especially high on Gittens, saying the signing was proof of life for Coach Ernie Kent at Washington State and adding, “it’s been a while since we’ve truly had something to get excited about with regards to the future of Coug basketball.”

Yeah... About that...

On Tuesday, WSU announced that Gittens would not be attending the university this fall and will instead start his college career at a junior college. “Roberto worked hard this summer and unfortunately came up a little bit short,” Kent said in the team’s official release.

It’s obviously terrible news for the Cougs heading into next season. The team still has two open scholarships with only a couple of months left until training camp. But, for the optimistic Coug fans, there is good news for the future beyond the 2017-18 season. In a tweet on Tuesday, Gittens reaffirmed his commitment to Washington State, despite his diversion to a “different route.”

If Gittens can do what needs to be done into order to make his way to Washington State, he’ll make a great piece for Coach Kent and the Cougars. But until then, once again, Coug fans will be playing the waiting game.

Here’s what the scholarship situation now looks like.


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