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Did Miles finds A hidden gem in Max Ritchie??


Marshall Warren Ackerman

Lost in last weeks drama of  "As Ronald Coleman Turns", was that announcement of another player added to the 2012-2013 basketball squad. One local paper had a 2 line footnote on the signing. This was not just any other player but, a 6'4 shooting Guard from Nebraska City, named Max Ritchie. Ritchie scored 19pts, 4 assists, 4 rebounds per game while in High school. What is unique about Ritchie is that he is Tim Miles first walk-on recruit. A walk-on is a non-scholarship player. Ritchie was recruited by ever G-PAC school and some D2 schools and had committed to Briar Cliff University in Sioux City, Iowa.  What is interesting about Ritchie is that he gave up a scholarship to BCU in order to come to Nebraska and play for Tim Miles and the CornHuskers. When asked why he gave up a free ride. He said "It was always my dream to play for Nebraska and I could not pass it up" Walk-ons usually occur when the team is out of scholarship or the player is independent wealthy. In some cases there is an agreement that the player will get a scholarship when a position becomes available or if they prove they are worthy of a scholarship. Walk-ons can also occur when when you have a 2 sports star. In Some cases Walk-ons are recruited, these are called "preferred" Walk-ons or they are chosen after an open try out. In the case of Max Ritchie he took the initiative to seek out the coaches and say hey I am willing to pay my own way to come and play for you. After the work out with the coaches they said we like what we see, and called him the the news " you're on the team". What is lost is how great of a recruit this actually is. Miles may have found another gem.

Max Ritchie, grew up in Nebraska City, Nebraska. He has been playing organized basketball since he was 7 years old. Ritchie comes from a fine basketball pedigree. His father has been a basketball coach all of Max's life. He has coached children basketball , AAU, high school basketball coach. He was Max's coach in high school. Ritchie said having his father who was a coach was huge in his basketball development and training. Ritchie said " He would always help me with my shot and tell me what I need to do better but he was always pretty laid back about it he never forced me to play but since I wanted to he gave me all the help I needed". The training and pedigree provided by Max's father may have come into play when Miles was choosing Max, such training is invaluable. Ritchie thinks it might have helped.

Ritchie has already moved to Lincoln is taking an anthropology class. He has an undeclared major. Ritchie has also been on the AAU circuit and knows 2 other Nebraska recruits Benny Parker and Shavon Shields. He said that one of the things that he looks foreword to the most about playing next season at Nebraska is playing with Parker and Shields. He began practicing with Parker and Shields, upon arrival and they have gelled quickly. Ritchie says"We just get along really well on and off the court almost like we have been playing together for years" that is good news for Nebraska fans, who have been concerned about how this b years teams going to do, cohesion is not a problem. When asked about how well he thinks the team will do this year he said " this season is what we make of it. "I think we will do better then most people expect." Will you make the post-season? "I think we can."

Has miles done it again? Did he find a hidden gem? A good basketball pedigree, good basketball skills, a good work ethic, confidence and initiative, doesn't come along everyday. The willingness to sacrifice for the opportunity to play for Nebraska, doesn't happen all the time. The good news is the kid wanted to play for Nebraska. Miles has added another piece of the puzzle for the 2012-2013 class and It looks to be another very solid piece. Welcome to Nebraska Max Ritchie. Go Big Red!!!

The preceding was an original interview researched and Interview by Marshall Warren Ackerman. Marshall is a freelance writer living north of San Francisco, CA. Copyright 2012 all rights reserved.

This post was edited on 7/3 4:44 PM by icedragon

7/3 4:38 PM | IP: Logged
This is puzzling,    Connor Beranek(and a coaches son)  plus All-State on a real good team(Ravenna) was turned down

to walk on at Nebraska,  yet Max Ritchie who wasn't All-State  was welcomed as a walk on.   Go figure!

Link: WHansen7/7 10:34 AM | IP: Logged
I haven't seen Connor Beranek play, but Ritchie is very smooth. Obviously the division one level is a completely different game, but he's got a good frame, and if he grows another inch or two I could see him contributing in the future.
7/8 2:59 AM | IP: Logged
I'd like to see NU bring in a Nebraska walk-on every year. It's been that way in the past, but sometimes those walk-ons aren't really the best the state has to offer. Of course, you're not going to get a lot of kids to turn down full rides elsewhere. But if you can bring in one from the top tier of players each year, I think that you would get at the least decent competition within the program for playing time and at best, half of those guys wind up playing a role and helping the team on the court.
7/8 10:16 AM | IP: Logged
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