Terry Henderson Jr., a senior guard at Neuse Christian Academy, announced his commitment to play basketball at West Virginia on local radio Monday afternoon.
Henderson, 17, understood he needed to have the best summer in his young career in order to attract major Division I schools. By late June, West Virginia decided to offer Henderson a scholarship, and in July, Mountaineers coach Bob Huggins watched him play in an AAU tournament.
The more the Mountaineers recruited Henderson, the more comfortable he became in committing to West Virginia before the high school season started.
“I just got better and better and played to my capabilities,” Henderson said of this summer. “(Huggins) told me they needed me and, that he would take care of him. That meant a lot.”
Last season, Henderson averaged 22 points, six rebounds and shot 47 percent from behind the arc. Henderson, who will be a shooting guard for the Mountaineers, also had offers from Virginia Tech, George Mason, Richmond and Rutgers.
At 6 foot 5 and 175 pounds, Henderson started playing on Neuse’s varsity team in eighth grade. Henderson has already scored more than 2,000 points and has led the Lions to three N.C. Christian School Association 3A state championships.
“We know he can score, and he’s going to do that,” Neuse coach Ken Adrian said. “As he’s developed mentally and physically, he’s worked at it. You don’t get to this point without hard work.”
Besides having the opportunity to play during his freshman year, Henderson said he made his decision after visiting West Virginia’s campus in late September. ESPN’s College GameDay crew was also in Morgantown that weekend to feature the Mountaineers host LSU.
“Seeing the atmosphere there for football was exciting, and everyone told me it was going to be the same for basketball,” Henderson said. “I feel this is really where I’ll fit in.”