tai_strickland

St. Pete’s Tai Strickland picks Wisconsin

St. Petersburg guard Tai Strickland had already narrowed his college choices to three schools.

He went to Wisconsin two weeks ago and came back from a trip to Rutgers this past weekend. Strickland was deciding whether to visit Minnesota when he made up his mind.

On Tuesday, Strickland, a three-star recruit, made his plans official by announcing on his Twitter page that he committed to the Badgers.

“It just felt like home,” he said of Wisconsin.

This season, Strickland transferred from Tampa Catholic and played alongside Serrel Smith on one of the most formidable backcourts in the area.

As the Green Devils made their run through the playoffs, Strickland’s stock continued to soar. Several coaches were in attendance for every playoff game, including assistants from Wisconsin who were at the RP Funding Center in Lakeland for St. Petersburg’s Class 8A state semifinal against Pompano Beach Blanche Ely.

In the past three weeks, Strickland whittled down his list of offers to a shortlist of schools he scheduled to visit.

“When I got from Rutgers I decided to reevaluate things, and I figured it was best for me to go ahead with Wisconsin,” Strickland said.

He could play a prominent role with the Badgers next season.

“Nothing is promised, but I’m going to be able to come in and compete for a starting spot,” Strickland said.

Strickland is quite familiar with big-time basketball. His father is former NBA guard Rod Strickland.

Tai has met Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant at various basketball functions. In the summer, Tai has hung out with Kyrie Irving, whose godfather is Rod.

Now, Tai is on a path to achieving to his own stardom, especially after deciding where to play in college.

“It’s a big weight off my shoulders,” Strickland said. “Now it’s time to prepare for next year.”

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