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Basketball: Rossi says Cal is a perfect fit

Alex Rossi, who chose Cal today over Stanford, Notre Dame and Virginia, said everything seems right for him in Berkeley, adding that his commitment is firm.

“I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about it,” Rossi said. “I’ve always wanted to go out West. The location was awesome. Coach (Mike) Montgomery’s system fits me perfectly at the 2 spot. All my final schools were great schools. It just came down to where I felt most comfortable. I decided Cal was the perfect place for me.”

Rossi is a 6-foot-5 1/2 wing from New Trier High in Winnetka, Ill. He is the second member of the high school class of 2010 to commit to the Bears, joining shooting guard Allen Crabbe of Price High in Los Angeles, and will arrive on campus in the fall a year from now.

Rossi made an unofficial visit to Berkeley this spring, and met with players, coaches and a few professors.

“It was a beautiful day,” he said. “Everything felt good.”

Rossi, who said he will make an official campus recruiting visit either during football or basketball seasons, gave Montgomery his decision in a Monday morning phone call.

“He was excited,” Rossi said. “He thinks I’m perfect for his system.”

Rossi attends the same high school that spawned former Cal coach Ben Braun. New Trier also is the alma mater of Matt Lottich, who played under Montgomery at Stanford from 2001 through ’04, during which time the Cardinal posted a record of 105-24. 

“I know Matt really well. We work out a lot together,” Rossi said. “He was 100 percent behind coach Montgomery and he thinks he’s a perfect coach for me.

“We’re different,” he said, when asked to compare himself as a player to Lottich. “He was a big-time competitor. I’m a little bit longer, a little bit more athletic. I think I shoot the ball better than he does, he handles it a little better.”

Jeff Faraudo

  • uh oh.

    Upon reading we got another shooter, I didn’t give it a thought – it’s easy to rotate shooters thru the guard spots and you can never have enough of them, right?

    However, upon second thought – Rossi and Crabbe seem like fairly similar players – perimeter spot up shooting 2 guards.

    Jeff: how do you think Crabbe interprets Cal’s recruitment of a player after him who will provide direct competition for the starting 2 guard spot? Do you think Crabbe views it as a slight and reconsiders his choice of Cal?

    That Monty went after another player so similar does beg the question if Monty would rather have the latter. If they are going to play on the floor at the same time, one has to be either a ball handler or a guy with size for rebounding, or slash for breaking down the D.

    Does the Monty system have room for 2 spot up shooters at the same time? Does the De La Salle kid drive, break down the D and dish to either wing, or down low to our incoming (still unknown) big guys?

    How do you see it playing out with Rossi and Crabbe?

  • Montybear

    With all respect, if you can’t envision Crabbe and Rossi together on the floor, you didn’t watch much Cal basketball last year.

  • Robert

    At almost six foot six I would imagine he will see time at the small forward position a lot. Theo is how tall? Maybe Monty is looking for the next PC, Theo combination?