After a long awaited recruiting process, South Mountain High School's ultra-talented and super athletic Zylan Cheatham had a big day on Saturday at this year's 15th Annual Arizona Preps Fall Showcase. After a second consecutive Fall Showcase Slam-Dunk championship where he jumped over players and completed high-flying 360 degree dunks; after he won this year's Fall Showcase Tournament Most Valuable Player award; Zylan Cheatham would shock the crowd in attendance with a verbal pledge to San Diego State University - ending his long college recruitment.
Cheatham had reeled in more than 30 different division-I scholarship offers in the recruiting process, and he would narrow it down to three schools - San Diego State, Washington and New Mexico. Cheatham would keep everyone in the basketball community on their shoes during the recruiting process, as he kept you guessing the entire recruiting process.
It looked as though the University of New Mexico would land Cheatham, after an amazing visit last weekend at the school in front of a large number of hometown college fans. But with New Mexico fans in attendance for the verbal announcement by Cheatham, he would let them down with a surprising verbal commitment to the Aztecs and head coach Steve Fisher and his basketball staff.
San Diego State assistant coach Justin Hudson was instrumental in landing Cheatham.
It also looked at one time as though the University of Washington would and should land Cheatham. Head coach Lorenzo Romar spent countless hours at Cheatham's game throughout the spring and summer. The successful and caring head coach would be unable to land the talented prospect.
"It was hard to let those other schools down," said Cheatham. "They were all great programs and did a great job in the recruiting process."
Cheatham would indicate to Arizona Preps that the lure to play for a talented team with great talent around him was just too much to pass up.
"We have a great program now, and we have a great recruiting class coming in," said Cheatham. "I also wanted to go somewhere where I like waking up every morning and working hard. It is a really nice place to go to school."
Cheatham is still very confident that he will be fine academically after his senior season, and will be prepared to enter college next fall at the school of his choice, but it will be a trying year for the talented prospect and his family. Cheatham is currently taking a full load of classes and night school in an attempt to make up school work in preparation for college eligibility.
Cheatham is also still hopeful that he will be cleared by the Arizona Interscholastic Association (AIA) soon, in an attempt to play high school basketball in the state this high school season.
Cheatham is currently rated as the #46 prospect overall in America’s 2014 class by ESPN.
Congratulations to Zylan Cheatham and his family on their commitment, and thank you from our staff on allowing us to host this announcement at our event.