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September 21, 2011
Ellis talks about decision to attend KU
Perry Ellis verbally committed to Kansas.The decision that so many Kansas fans had longed to hear was announced on Wednesday. Sitting squarely in-between his father, Will Ellis and mother, Fonda Ellis,
"I'm really excited to be here," said Ellis, the 6-foot-8, 220-pound combo-forward from Heights High School in Wichita, Kan. "It went by so fast and I had so much fun. At first, I'd just like to thank God for me being here. I mean, without him there is nothing. I'd like to thank my mom and dad for everything. I'd like to thank them for everything they did for me."
Ellis' mother Fonda played a big role in the recruiting process. She admitted during the press conference she helped handle a lot of the media requests and phone calls that came in for her son.
"They supported me and helped me throughout," Ellis said of his parents. "They've helped and supported me since day one, and I'd just like to thank them. I'd like to thank my sister, a great role model for me. I really got to learn the ropes from her. I just wanted to follow her footsteps and she really helped me. I'd like to thank Coach (Joe) Auer for helping me become a better person and player. He helped make this process go by so easy. He helped me not get confused in all of this. I'd really like to thank my trainer, who helped me from a physical standpoint."
Following a brief opening statement in which Ellis, the No. 24 ranked player in the 2012 class, gave thanks to those people that helped him along the way, he officially put an end to his recruitment.
Many expected Ellis to commit to Kansas inside Heights High School gymnasium on Wednesday afternoon.
Ellis, the No. 9 ranked power forward in the class, didn't disappoint the Jayhawk faithful. With family, coaches and several media in attendance, Ellis talked about his decision to play for Bill Self and the Jayhawks.
"At this time, I'd like to decide what school I will go to, and it's the University of Kansas," said Ellis. "I knew it (Kansas was my school) for so long and I've been there so many times, I just felt so comfortable there. There was just a sense that Kansas was the school. All the schools are great and I could succeed at all of them, but I just felt so comfortable with Kansas. I'm happy to have it over with.
"I'm excited about my choice and it was a fun experience overall, and I'll miss it," he added.
Ellis conducted in-home visits with Kansas, Kansas State, Wichita State and Kentucky. It's safe to say that his decision to ink with Kansas was made long before Self and Danny Manning arrived in Wichita on September 9 to meet with Perry and his family.
The wheels for Wednesday's decision by Ellis were set in motion four years ago. In fact, Self's decision to attend Perry's first high school game his freshman year set the tone for the Jayhawks.
Former Kansas legend Manning also played a factor in his decision.
"You see what he (Manning) does with his players," said Ellis. "For example, the Morris twins. You saw how the Morris twins came in and Coach Manning improved them. It's going to be great and he's only going to make me better."
Ellis, who will be on hand this weekend for Legends of the Phog, welcomes the opportunity to work with Manning during his college career. The opportunity to do so played a major role in his decision to attend Kansas.
Self was also visible at numerous events Ellis and his teams played in. From the first game Ellis played as a freshman at Heights High School until his final game this past summer with Kansas Pray and Play Players, Self was on hand to watch the five-star forward.
Not surprisingly, when Self received a phone call from Ellis informing him of his decision, Self was ecstatic.
"I talked to Coach Self when I made my decision and he was real excited," he said. "He was real excited for me and real happy. He enjoyed the good news."