STEVENS POINT – It’s been a whirlwind three days for Pacelli senior basketball player James Gollon.
With Ohio University assistant basketball coach Will Ryan sitting in the stands at the Student Activities Center for the Cardinals game with, torched the nets for 37 points.
then headed over to for a slice of pizza to celebrate a Central Wisconsin Conference-8 blowout win with friends. While sitting at a table, he received a phone call from Ryan informing the Bobcats were offering him a Division I basketball scholarship.
He only needed a couple days to accept the offer and commit to play basketball at Ohio University of the Mid-American Conference in the fall,confirmed to Stevens Point Journal Media on Sunday.
“Basically it’s a dream come true to have a chance to play at a great mid-major,” said, son of Gerald and Debra . “Me and my family and my brother ( ) talked it over, and we felt this was the right fit for me.
“This is everything I’ve worked for and prayed for since I started playing basketball.”
, a 6-foot-5 guard/forward, expects to sign his letter of intent at some point during the spring signing period that begins April 15 and runs through May 20.
He plans to take an official visit to the Athens, Ohio, campus after the Cardinals’ season concludes.
The Bobcats coaching staff had been in contact in recent weeks, according to, and the interest was strong enough to send Ryan to watch in person on Feb. 13.
He becomes the second member of the family to earn a Division I scholarship, joining his older brother, who wrapped up a successful college career at Mercer University last spring.
“When (<AF>1/2<XA> hours instead of 21 hours.”) committed to Mercer, people were asking where is that,” said. “At least I’ll be closer to home. I think it’s like 10 or 10
An athletic and versatile player who can hurt teams driving to the basket as much as with a hot hand from the perimeter,missed a portion of his junior season with a hip injury.
Once he returned,looked to find his role on a talented roster.
, who also had Division I offers from Idaho State and Army and interest from Eastern Washington and the University of Denver, ranks second in the state in scoring with an average of 30.4 points a game.
The Bobcats are led by first-year coach Saul Phillips, who took North Dakota State to the NCAA Tournament a year ago, upsetting No. 5 seed Oklahoma in the second round. Ohio is 9-14 overall and 4-8 in the MAC.
He could have waited to see if a high mid-major or high major offer came along, butfelt there was no need to wait any longer and he pulled the trigger on the Bobcats offer sight unseen.
“Even out of the other schools that offered, Ohio feels right and it’s the right decision I feel,”said. “I really felt at home with the coaching staff and the fan base. Basically, it was everything I was looking for.
“(The scholarship) means a lot. To have a chance to play for a great mid-major program, I can’t wait to get there.”
With his college decision behind him,plans to put his undivided attention on helping the Cardinals close out the season as strong as possible.
is 10-10 entering the final two games of the regular season with the WIAA playoff series to follow.
“Obviously, I want to finish the high school season on a good note,”said. “When it’s over it’s going to be bittersweet because I’ll miss playing in high school, but I also have a great college experience and basketball future ahead of me.”
Scott A. Williams can be reached at 715-345-2282. Find him on Twitter as @