When Chasson Randle walks down the halls of Rock Island high school today he might be sporting some new threads.
Randle admitted to making a few purchases of Stanford apparel after announcing his intentions to play for the Cardinal in 2011.
"I got a few things," Randle said with a smile.
Randle had narrowed his list of schools to Stanford, Purdue and Illinois in July. Wednesday, he pared that list to one.
In the end, it was Randle's relationship with Stanford coach Johnny Dawkins that made the difference.
"It was just his character," Randle said. "He's a stand-up guy. He's a sincere guy, and I sensed that from Day 1."
Randle said it was difficult to say no to his home-state college - Illinois.
"It was hard to say no to them, growing up watching their Final Four team and their other great teams," Randle said.
Randle enters this season as Rock Island's all-time leading scorer. He averaged 18.7 points and 7.6 rebounds last season. He has won two gold medals for Team USA and is a two-time all-state selection.
"He's represented our community with class," Rock Island basketball coach Thom Sigel said. "He went through a very tough process in a public way and handled it with maturity and class."
Randle began his news conference by thanking his guests and expressing his love for his parents. Once he announced Stanford as his choice the small crowd cheered and clapped as he placed a white baseball cap with a red "S" on his head and hugged his folks.
Now that he has declared, Randle and his Rock Island teammates can focus on big goals for this season.
"We were focusing on state no matter where he went," Rocky point guard Royce Muskeyvalley said. "Now that he's got this out of the way, it's going to be a lot easier for him to focus on the season.