Had a chance to talk with new WSU basketball coach Ken Bone this afternoon. He relayed the information he's hired another assistant coach (former UW player Curtis Allen) and some other information about the incoming freshmen. For a early peek at our unedited story that will appear all tidied up in tomorrow's S-R, read on.
• Here's the unedited version of the story ...
PULLMAN – Washington State University men's basketball coach Ken Bone has added another member to his coaching staff, saying that Curtis Allen, a former UW player who assisted Bone at Portland State, is headed to Pullman.
"We've been able to hire Curtis Allen, who worked for me the last four years at Portland State," Bone said Monday. "I got to know him when he was a player at the University of Washington. Actually, I met him when he was in high school, but he didn't have the time of day for me because I was at Seattle Pacific."
He has time now.
Allen, who grew up in Tacoma, played at Washington when Bone was an assistant for Lorenzo Romar. He joined Bone at Portland State in 2005 after a year as an assistant at Seattle's University Prep.
With Allen joining Ben Johnson, the lone holdover from former coach Tony Bennett's staff, Bone has just one more assistant coaching position to fill.
"I've narrowed it down to a couple guys and need to make that decision in the next couple days," Bone said. "I'm trying to put together a staff where we cover all of our bases."
Bone was back in his office after a 13-hour flight to and a 14-hour flight back from Australia, where he and Johnson secured a recommitment from 6-foot-9 recruit Brock Motum.
"It was a great meeting," Bone said. "He comes from a really good family. I'm just really happy he's coming. He seems like a great kid.
"I've never seen him play live but I've watched him on videotape and he's good."
In about two weeks, Bone was able to entice three of the Cougars' four recruits – Motum, guard Xavier Thames and forward Anthony Brown – to reaffirm their commitment to WSU.
"The kids had other choices (in the process) and obviously picked Washington State," Bone said. Of the one who got away, North Carolina forward David Chadwick, Bone understands.
"In Chadwick's case, I really do believe a lot of it had to do with the relationship he and his parents had with Tony Bennett and had for years," Bone said.
With Chadwick released from his letter-of-intent, WSU does have a scholarship available for the fall.
"It's late, late in the recruiting process," Bone said. "Whoever we contact or approach, most likely we won't have a relationship with.
"To feel comfortable that we are going to go out and sign somebody no one has signed yet, I don't think it's reality."
So Bone is leaning toward keeping the scholarship open until next season.
"My best bet is we will save that scholarship and use it the following year," Bone said. "We only have one senior (Nik Koprivica) next year."
• That's it for this afternoon. We'll be back in the morning. Until then …