Richard Romeo to Walk On for WVU Basketball - WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News - Mountaineer Sports

Richard Romeo to Walk On for WVU Basketball


West Virginia basketball is rounding out its roster for the coming season with the addition of in-state product Richard Romeo.

The Greenbrier East High graduate is enrolling at WVU to join Bob Huggins and company as an invited walk-on for 2012-13 after wrapping up his prep career.

"It means a lot," Romeo said Wednesday. "It's definitely an honor playing for someone like Coach Huggins. I grew up being nothing but a die hard WVU fan and loving Coach Huggins, so it's exciting."

Romeo first had contact with the Mountaineers staff when assistant coach Jerrod Calhoun was still with the program prior to taking the head coaching job at Fairmont State.

In the time since, Romeo has been considering other opportunities with smaller programs that would present a seemingly simpler path to the court. The idea of prep school became appealing as an avenue to gain more exposure and more experience with the hopes of a better destination waiting in his future, but he instead chose to take the uncertainty of a walk-on position.

At West Virginia, he believes that choice will be rewarded.
"I was recruited at the mid-major level and the low Division-I level and I was even considering prep school so I could play at a higher level, but the idea of going to West Virginia is much more appealing than going to play at the mid-major level and not traveling to Kansas and schools like that," Romeo says.

Growing up in the Mountain State, Romeo never envisioned taking road trips to play college basketball in Big 12 arenas.

"I'm absolutely excited about it," he says. "Just to have the opportunity to play against the best of the best all year ‘round, training with the best coaches in the best facilities all season, it's all surreal to me still."

The guard averaged 10.5 points, seven assists and four rebounds per game in an injury-plagued senior season with Greenbrier East.

"We're realistic. He's a lot like other kids that are walk-ons," says Romeo's father, Rick. "You know you may not ever see the floor or you may grow. You just don't know. He's a pretty talented kid and he's got the opportunity to prove himself."

Romeo hopes to stay at WVU through his basketball career and gain the knowledge and experience to contribute to the team with more than just practice reps.  

"My goal is to stay at WVU and earn a scholarship," he says, "and from what I've been told, I'll be in a good position if I work hard to do so."

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