Monday, July 14, 2014 | 4:50 p.m.
Darrian Traylor was inpatient with sitting and waiting.
During the past high school basketball season, when Centennial High advanced to the Sunset Regional championship game, Traylor sat helplessly on the bench watching his teammates lose to eventual state champion Bishop Gorman.
Traylor, a 6-foot-2 guard, had surgery last November to repair a torn meniscus and loose cartilage in his knee. His season was over before it could begin.
“It was pretty horrible sitting there and knowing I couldn’t help them,” Traylor said.
The inactivity, though, didn’t stop college coaches from offering him a scholarship. Traylor, a three-star prospect by ESPN.com, verbally committed today to UC Irvine.
Despite still not playing a game on the varsity ranks, Traylor became heavily recruited. He had offers from Southern Utah, Utah State, San Francisco, New Mexico State, Brown, Weber State and Cal-Poly.
None of the schools matched what UC Irvine had to offer.
“I really liked the atmosphere there. Plus, the location. It’s beautiful weather,” he said.
Traylor finally returned from surgery early this month, playing with the Las Vegas Knicks AAU team during an event in Philadelphia. He quickly showed his promise.
“His first game back on the circuit, he had 20 points. And we were back East,” Knicks coach Lamar Bigby said. “He was getting down on the East coast. Darrian is a bad boy, man.”
He’s the second local player from the class of 2015 to commit in as many days. Sunday, Las Vegas High’s Ray Smith committed to Arizona. Smith, ironically, advanced to the next level despite a knee injury. He torn his ACL last week.