A handful of Division I basketball programs had shown interest in Miller School senior Travis Hester throughout the recruiting process. But after a recent visit to Hofstra, Hester knew he'd found the right place for him.
Hester verbally committed to the Pride on Tuesday, just days after taking an official visit to Hofstra this past weekend.
"When someone wants you, you're definitely going to take that into consideration, and when I got up there the atmosphere fit me well," Hester said Tuesday afternoon. "I like the city, and I feel like it's the best place where I can come in and get playing time as of a young age, so that's really important to me."
Hester, a Crozet native, is in his third season at Miller after transferring from Western Albemarle. The 6-3 shooting guard is averaging 17 points, four rebounds, and three assists as a senior.
"They're getting a five-year high school kid who is college ready," Miller coach Scott Willard said. "He's played against Division I caliber teammates for three straight years, in the highest level of high school basketball for three years here at Miller. So in our opinion he wouldn't skip a beat going to the next level."
Hester mentioned Maryland, Oregon State, Gardner Webb, and Appalachian State among the other Division I programs that showed interest. But he said his decision was made after seeing so much he liked this past weekend.
"How well the community fits into the program. They support it 100 percent, and that's what I like," Hester explained. "Everyone in the city, in the community comes out to all the games. I got to meet with the president, he spoke highly of me. The coaches were honest with me from the get-go and I appreciate that."
Willard expects Hester to fill a need for the Pride next season. And playing at Hofstra, a member of the CAA, will give Hester the occasional opportunity to play relatively close to home.
"That team needs a shooter right away, so it's going to allow him to come in to a team, have a significant role I would hope immediately," Willard said. "And then also allow him, in the conference, to come back and play in front of his family and friends with Old Dominion and JMU and some local schools."