School and Year (1998-99) East Chicago Central HS, IN - Senior
Height and Weight 6'7 204lbs
Position Center/Power Forward
97-98 Ratings #39 (RUSA), #71 (HS)
Top30 forward (BO), TOP60 (JT)
98-99 Ratings #98 (RUSA), #87 (HS), #82 (VC)
#90 (BG), #51 (SW), #88 (SN)
Academically Eligible Yes
AAU team Spiece Gym Rats North 17 (1998)
Alabama Lasers (1998)
Spiece Gym Rats North 16 (1997)
Player Summary ·
Player News ·
Game Stats ·
Season Stats ·
Ricky Wright is a power forward, strong enough to bang with most
centers he comes up against in camps and in high school. The speculation
that he could be the best big man in the region is valid. At 6'7 and
220lbs, Wright has the body to be either a 4 in college, or maybe a 5 on
a team who values running. Although center wouldn't be his ideal position,
he has the tools to be very effective there. I believe he could make some
serious noise on the national level if he would get his outside game
going. He has a strong upper body and some nice legs. His leaping ability
and strong spin moves make him hard to get a handle on if you are trying
to defend him in the post. He can play VERY aggressive post defense if the
need arises, but likes to cruise around the lane for the inlet. Then
he goes to work. Great footwork and a tenacious rebounder who stays with
his shot into it goes in or goes the other way. Right now, Wright has a
solid mix of offensive and defensive skills. An excellent example of
power and smooth movements. Conditioning...he will excel in a running
offense and can battle with 260lb centers without running out of gas by
the end of the game. As for weaknesses, there aren't any glaring
weaknesses. He does need to work on extending his range, and can use
some work on positioning under the basket. He sometimes tries to
compensate for poor positioning with his leaping ability. Get him in
the right position and he will be unstoppable.
Wright sat out all of his junior year with a broken navicular bone
in his right foot, after a sophomore year that had him go from a backup
into a starting position on East Chicago's rather loaded squad. The
summer between his sophomore and junior years had him playing on the
same AAU squad with Austin Parkinson, Kenny Lowe and John Hamilton.
That team went 55-4 for the season, taking the Indiana state AAU
championship and finishing 5th in the national tournament.
11-20-98...Wright officially has announced for Villanova.
11-9-98...Indications out of East Chicago say Wright is headed to join
former EC Central teammate Bobby Smith at Villanova. Wright has said East Chicago's
James Dye has been instrumental in his recruiting process. Dye was also Bobby
Smith's guardian, who sent Smith to MCI and later saw Smith go on to Villanova.
People outside the EC Central program have been very active in the recruiting
processes of EC Central players. Another recent example was the transfer of
Marcus Jefferson out of East Chicago to prep school. A move EC Central
officials claim was orchestrated by an AAU coach.
Today is the day for the long awaited decision from Ricky
Wright. The Indy Star has this most recent update, and as we have all suspected,
immediate playing time will be a factor. This file will be updated today
as soon as confirmation is received.
10-31-98...One of the first articles I've seen to point out that
Michigan would also give Wright potential problems with immediate playing
time. Plus, as this Trail Talk article states, Wright may not be Michigan's
first priority at small forward in this recruiting class.
10-28-98...Ricky's visit to Xavier (and everywhere else) was a good
one. FOr an update, check out this Insider's Report blurb.
10-24-98...Two more visits for Wright, then a decision. Scheduled for
this weekend is Xavier of Ohio, followed by a 30th visit to Villanova. On
hand to show him the Villanova campus will no doubt be former East Chicago
teammate Bobby Smith, who spent last year at Maine Central Institute and
signed with Villanova this year. For some comments on his visit to Mackey
Magic, take this link to an Insider's Report article.
10-19-98...Keady and staff have one scholarship remaining for the
high school senior class. Purdue continues to be heavily involved with Ricky
Wright, and Wright currently has Purdue "at the top of the list". According
to Jeff Washburn for the Journal and Courier, Wright will continue to take visits
to Xavier and Villanova (former EC Central teammate Bobby Smith is there)
and decide in November. A comment Austin Parkinson made the same evening
may indicate Purdue is in good shape with Wright. "If I was to come to
Purdue, it would be because of my friends Rick [Wright] and Kenny [Lowe],"
the Northwestern HS junior point guard said. Lowe has already verbally
committed to Purdue.
10-9-98...Ricky will be officially visiting Purdue October 16 and
17, which will put him on campus for Mackey Magic. According to Bob Miles
from EC (now the Athletic Director), Wright is also planning to visit
Xavier and Villanova. We've heard the rumors that he has already verballed
the Boilers, but put as much faith in them as the rumors last month that
had him verballed to the Wolverines. The status of Caron Butler should not
be a factor now, since Butler is expected to be in prep school for two
years. Wright is academically qualified.
10-1-98...Just when you think you have Purdue recruiting figured
out, here comes a new twist in the story. Several places are saying
Caron Butler has Purdue as his favorite and is close to a commitment. The
player such a decision would impact the most would be Ricky Wright. Several
pieces of information over the past few days indicate Purdue is still
very much involved with Wright. According to Hoop Scoop, Ohio editor Chris
Johnson thinks Purdue will get a commitment from Wright soon. Another
writer, independent scout Jeremy Tiers, states he talked to Wright and was
told it is neck and neck between Purdue and Michigan. Wright also said he
was close to a decision. Yet another source indicates that Purdue and
Wright are still in contact, which makes us wonder if that is the reason
why Butler seems to be waiting to make an "official" announcement.
9-13-98...Michigan invited not only Ricky Wright for an official
visit to Ann Arbor this past weekend, but also a few of its other high
priority recruits. Also on hand for the visit was recently verballed
point guard Kevin Gaines. If Wright is indeed favoring Michigan and isn't
waiting for a better offer elsewhere, it is likely we will hear something
on him within the next few days.
8-20-98...The internet rumor that Ricky Wright has verballed to
Michigan is false according to Wright. I spoke with him this afternoon
during a weightlifting session at E.C. and he denied that he had given
a committment to any school. He does have a final list of three...
Michigan, Purdue and Indiana, and does seem to be favoring the Wolverines
at the moment after recently visiting Ann Arbor. All three schools
currently have scholarship offers on the table, and he said he has notified
other schools that he will choose between the three on his list. Don't expect
Wright to wait until official visits in September to announce. He said he is
at the point of discussing his choices with his family and a decision
could come anytime. When asked if he was waiting on anything to happen at
a particular school first, he said he only has to talk it over with his
family and is in control of his own decision at the moment.
7-24-98...After visiting Michigan in June, it appears Ricky Wright
is now favoring the Wolverines over Purdue and Indiana. Michigan has a ton
of scholarships and boasts plenty of immediate playing time.
7-4-98...Although I am not as optimistic that Wright is "Purdue's
to lose", this article from the Indianapolis Star has some encouraging
comments from Ricky on the Boilers. Wright is a hot topic of conversation
on the AAU circuit, and is getting recruited by many major colleges. Some
of the most recent contenders are said to be Indiana, Kentucky, LSU,
Michigan and Michigan State.
7-1-98...Wright will be participating in this year's Nike Camp, to
be held in Indianapolis next week.
6-29-98...Ricky Wright passed up the Indiana State AAU championship
this weekend to join the Alabama Lasers AAU team for a tournament in DC.
Taking advantage of the Detroit Motor City big men doubling up on Alabama
big man Marvin Stone (rated the #1 junior by a couple of magazines),
Wright exploded for 31 points and 12 boards in the win. The Lasers made
it to the finals, where they came up against DC Assault on their home
floor. The Lasers lost the game 80-73, due in large part to DC's 41 free
throws compared to Alabama's 21. Wright, Stone, Dudley and Underwood all
fouled out of the game for the Lasers.
Meanwhile in the Indiana AAU state tournament, Spiece North lost
a 14 point lead and went down to Bloomington Red in overtime in the
sceond round of the tournament. Although they failed to advance far into
the Indiana tournament, Spiece North still has a bid for National AAU
tournament in July.
5-5-98...Click here for an article from the Journal and Courier on the
recruitment of Ricky Wright. In talking to EC Central coach Bobby Miles on
Friday, he told me both Purdue and IU are "asking the same questions" of
Wright and are still heavily involved. Wright has moved to the top of
Purdue's wish list for one of two available scholarships for the current
junior class. Wright's eventual interest will depend on the success or
failure of Cameron Stephens and Jamaal Davis in gaining academic eligibility
for next fall. Wright is friends with members of the current Purdue squad, and
has expressed an interest in playing with Austin Parkinson in college.
4-28-98...Look for the Spiece Gym Rats North 17 team this summer if
you wish to check out Ricky in action. He will be teamed up with F Carlton
Baker, CG Kenny Lowe, C Martin Brothers, PG Austin Parkinson and WG John
Hamilton to only name a few. The inside combo of Baker and Wright will be
hard to match on the AAU circuit in terms of strength, speed and tenacity.
2-20-97...Ricky is expected to rejoin the team for the 2/28 game
against Andrean. Wright was reported to be in attendance for the Purdue vs.
Illinois game in Mackey last week.
12-29-97...A look at the team from the TimesOnline.
11-28-97...Ricky Wright has yet to play a game this season due to
a fractured bone in his left leg. He could return to the lineup very soon.
3-15-97...One more "style" point was all Wright needed for a Lafayette
Semistate slam dunk crown. He finished second to Sean Lewis of Lebanon, who
will go on to the state slam dunk finals next week in the Hoosier Dome.
Lewis will face another Purdue recruit there in Rodney Smith, who has this
years best score in slam dunk competition to date.
2-25-97...East Chicago was bounced from its own sectional by a team
bent on revenge. Hammond avenged an early season loss to East Chicago
by taking over in the last five minutes. Hammond forced 22 turnovers and
took control of the game with five minutes remaining when Bobby Smith sat
out with a twisted ankle. The Hammond guards then isolated East Chicago's
inside game, and pressed their way to the upset victory.
1-24-97...Wright took some criticism in this game from Coach Todd
for not seeing the team concept. Although EC beat Roosevelt 66-54, it
says a lot about your interior play when your point guard leads the
team in rebounds for the game. A team with three players at 6'7 (Davis
was out with the flu and with an injury). Wright subbed for Davis at
center. "Our biggest problem tonight was selfish play and some discontented
people," said Todd, referring primarily to Wright. "You have to have an ego
to win, but it's got to be a team ego."
1-22-97...Hammond's shot at dethroning EC Central bounced off the
front of the rim as EC escaped 63-61. "I was under the basket and watching
it and it looked good to me...real good," said Ricky Wright about the
Keith Herron last second shot. A welcomed kiss of fate after a would-be
game winning shot from Bobby Smith was disallowed last Saturday at
1-10-97...Five EC Central players finished in double figures tonight
as EC dropped Gavit 81-56. Wright finished with 12 as did Willie Davis.
12-20-96...Bobby Smith is used to scoring a game winning shot,
but on Friday night it was sophomore Rick Wright in the role of hero,
courtesy a Smith assist. With 8 seconds left, Smith drove the length of the
the court and drove down the lane collapsing the defense. This left Wright
wide open on the perimeter, who took the Smith pass and finger-rolled
in the winning bucket. The NW Times #1 team in the region, won the
squeaker by the score of 51-49. As he usually does, Coach Todd was not
at a loss for criticism for his players. "We won the game on athletic
ability," said Todd, "not on basketball ability. We didn't play smart
at all. We played hard. They played smart."
There was a lot of talk about the officiating. EC finished the
game with 20 fouls and Lake Central had 21. Not only were the coaches
at a loss for words as to why the game was being called so closely, so
was the crowd. In a juvenile show of disgust, a full bottle of sports
drink was thrown onto the court with about 3 minutes remaining in the
second half. "It was disgusting," said Todd on the incident. "That's as
bad a thing that I have seen in years." EC Central (5-0, 2-0) was
whistled for 14 of their 20 fouls in the first half. "During timeouts
our kids kept saying 'We're getting fouled, we're getting fouled,'"
Todd said. "It's like when babies whine to get a new bottle. We just have
to learn to adjust." So what will be the focus of Todd's Saturday
practice? "We have to stop believing we are the best team in the universe,"
DATE MIN FG FGA FT FTA 3P 3PA RB A B S PTS
* 06-26-98 12 31 Won vs Detroit Motor City
05-02-98 7 2 0 16 Lost 66- CMH 76ers 73
05-02-98 6 3 0 15 Won 70- No Excuses 60
05-01-98 4 1 0 9 Won 84- Salt Lake 74
02-25-97 6 9 5 6 9 17 Lost 67- Hammond 72
01-24-97 0 3 2 2 2 Won 66- Gary Roosevelt 54
01-10-97 6 0 2 12 Won 81- Gavit 56
12-20-96 3 2 2 8 Won 51- Lake Central 49
Season thru PPG FG% FT% 3P% RPG APG SPG BPG RECORD RANK
97-98 season [Did not play due to injury]
97-98 season Preseason All-State Third Team (Hoosier Basketball)
AAU All-American Second Team
Date Day Time Opponent
---- --- ---- --------------------
11/28/97 FRI 12:30P W Thanksgiving Classic
11/29/97 SAT 12:30P W Thanksgiving Classic
12/12/97 FRI 7:30P W @ Michigan City
12/19/97 FRI 7:30P W Lake Central
12/20/97 SAT 7:00P W @ South Bend Clay
12/27/97 SAT 7:30P W Anderson Highland
01/03/98 SAT TBA W @ Elkhart Memorial (Elkhart Classic)
01/03/98 SAT TBA W Penn (Elkhart Classic)
01/07/98 WED 7:30P W Bishop Noll
01/09/98 FRI 7:30P W @ Hammond Gavit
01/17/98 SAT 7:30P W Lafayette Jeff
01/20/98 TUE 7:30P W Hammond High
01/23/98 FRI 7:30P W Gary Roosevelt
01/24/98 SAT 7:00P W Crown Point
01/30/98 FRI 7:30P L @ Gary West
02/03/98 TUE 7:30P W @ Gary Wirt
02/07/98 SAT 7:30P W @ Indy Broad Ripple
02/13/98 FRI 7:30P W @ Gary Lew Wallace
02/19/98 THU 7:30P W Merrillville
02/28/98 SAT 7:30P W @ Andrean
03/04/98 WED 7:30P L Sectional vs #8 Gary West (@ East Chicago)
* Times subject to change *
* To confirm game time call East Chicago Central HS at 219-391-6315 *