Advice is nice, but sometimes you just have to follow your heart.
For recent York High graduate Kyree Generett, Kutztown University is the place where his heart led him.
After committing in April to Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference rival Shippensburg University, Generett almost immediately second-guessed his decision.
Fans, family and friends seemed to be pushing Generett toward Shippensburg, but the former Bearcat standout could never get comfortable with his choice. It wasn’t until a few weeks ago, however, when Generett knew he had to do some back-tracking.
“When I was deciding, there was a lot of pressure,” said Generett, who celebrated his 18th birthday Thursday. “And I know that everybody goes through the pressure, but there were a lot of people putting stuff in my head and getting in my ear. They were telling me how good Shippensburg is, but I really liked Kutztown.”
Both Kutztown and Shippensburg are NCAA Division II programs coming off strong seasons. Kutztown was 21-7 last year, including a 16-6 mark in the PSAC. Shippensburg was 25-8, including 17-5 in the PSAC.
Kutztown was the first place that the 6-foot, 1-inch guard officially visited last year. He enjoyed the atmosphere at the campus, located between Reading and Allentown, as well as the coaches and the up-tempo style of play that the Golden Bears employ.
“About a month ago I just really started thinking about what I wanted,” he said. “I just prayed on it.”
The extra time to ponder his life led him to make the decision that was compatible with his heart.
“So I talked with Coach (Chris) Fite at Shippensburg and had to make that tough call,” Generett said. “But it all worked out.”
Coming off strong senior season: Kutztown coach Bernie Driscoll and his staff were more than happy to add a player the caliber of Generett, who finished second in the York-Adams League in scoring at 21.1 points per game as a senior. He helped the Bearcats reach the District 3 Class 5-A title game.
Generett was all smiles when he found out that Kutztown’s offer was still on the table.
“I just liked the coaches, and the players were cool,” he said. “I got to play with them and work out with them.”
While the coaches and players were certainly factors in his decision, there was another big draw that the Kutztown campus had, which had nothing to do with basketball.
“I really liked that they had a Chick-fil-A on campus,” he said. “Food is important and I love Chick-fil-A.”
Food for thought: While it was a little gut-wrenching to have to reverse course with his college decision, Generett believes that he did the right thing. He just hopes that his story serves as food for thought for other high school athletes who are going through, or about to go through, the recruiting and signing process.
“I’d just like for anyone who is student-athlete that is reading this for them to just go with whatever decision that they feel is right,” he said. “Just try to filter out what everyone is telling you. Forget the name and just make sure that the decision you make is perfect for you.”
Reach Ryan Vandersloot at firstname.lastname@example.org.