LDS B-Ball player Devoe Suits Up for UW Huskies
SEATTLE, WASHINGTON -- Two sportswriters in Western Washington have
highlighted LDS basketball player Ben Devoe as a big player who shows
promise for the University of Washington Huskies hoops program.
Writers for The Seattle Times and The Everett Herald both reviewed
the circumstances that have brought Ben Devoe to the Huskies. While
Devoe has yet to play this season, he may have to be asked to end
what is hoped to be his redshirt season.
Devoe, a former Olympia (Washington) High School stand-out center,
was recruited heavily by most of the colleges and universities in the
His plans to serve an LDS mission tempered many recruiters' interest.
"Most schools didn't want me before my mission," says Ben. "They said
they'd talk to me when I got back.
So, out of high school, because of his desire to serve a mission, Ben
Devoe turned down a basketball scholarship to Northwestern and
instead attended Air Force Prep Academy. Then, he left to fulfill a
mission in Harrisburg PA. Ben's mission work was cut short due to his
injuring his back after five months, and he returned home.
While recuperating back in Olympia, he was spending time working out
and coaching the junior varsity and C basketball teams at Olympia
High and, in December, the University of Washington coaching staff
came calling to get him in a Washington Huskies uniform and perhaps
even fill in for some injured players.
At 6-foot-10 and 260-pounds, Ben could still be a help to the Huskies
this year, but it is likely instead that he will redshirt the season.
The staff knew of Ben from his participation in high school summer
camps at the University of Washington and from their previous
recruiting contacts. When a fan contacted the school to let the team
know that Ben was home early, the coaches took advantage of the
inside information to get him back in school in Seattle before other
colleges came after him.
Summing up the whole, quick process, the coach of the Huskies, Bob
Bender said, "A Husky fan in Olympia called and told us Ben was back.
We got hold of him right away. He was interested, so it worked out."
The Huskies are in last place in their conference and could use Ben
this season to fill in for a couple of injured players. He was suited
up and ready to play if needed in this past weekend's loss against
USC. But even though Ben appears physically ready to play and he
suits up for games, his coach believes that if they can wait until
next season, it would be best.
Says coach Bender: "In his best interest, for his development, it
would be best if he redshirted. But where we would consider playing
him might be a game-to-game thing. That's a big body (referring to
Ben's 260-pounds), and who knows where we could be in that situation?
We've asked him to be flexible."
Ben prefers to wait until next year, using this season to readjust to
college team play. "Since David (Dixon, the starting center) is going
to be graduating this year and hopefully Marlon (Shelton) can get his
knee better, I think I can be ready (for next season,)" says Ben.
"That's the big plus of coming in winter quarter, to get me ready for
next year. I'll probably stick around this summer."
Devoe started in both his junior and senior years at Olympia High and
averaged 14 points per game. He currently provides strong physical
competition for his teammates in practices and getting his size and
consistent shooting ability onto the game court are anticipated
The University of Washington Huskies currently are 0-4 in Pac 10 play
and 6-8 for the season.
UW men hope two new additions add up to wins in L.A. rematches
Seattle WA Times 4Jan02 S2
By Bob Sherwin: Seattle Times staff reporter
Frederick could help Huskies
Everett WA Herald 4Jan02 S2
By John Sleeper: Herald Writer