How did you commit to OSU?

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Josh Worden, Senior Beat Reporter

Each Oregon State men’s basketball player arrived in Corvallis with a unique story 

Daniel Gomis

Gomis has been at OSU since 2011 and grew up in Senegal. His English was still developing when he played prep ball at Oak Hill Academy in Virginia, leading to a major incident of miscommunication in his recruiting process with OSU.

Then-head coach Craig Robinson encouraged Gomis to commit to OSU and seal his decision, so Gomis agreed without understanding what the word ‘committing’ meant.

“Maybe I should have looked it up before I did it,” he said with a laugh. “I really didn’t know what it was. I called (assistant coach Nate) Pomeday and I was like, ‘Man, what’s committing?’ And he said, ‘That means you’re not allowed to talk to other coaches any more.’ I was like, ‘Wow, I wish I would have known.’ But man, I don’t regret coming here. It’s one of the best places you can be at.”

Gomis was also surprised at the amount of time it took just to be recruited. Ranked by Scout.com as the No. 22 power forward in the nation and the No. 95 overall prospect, Gomis received plenty of interest from different teams.

“That whole recruiting process was kind of crazy because I was getting letters every day, getting calls,” he said. “I was like, ‘How do people get my address and all that?’ People calling me left and right. It was kind of overwhelming.”

Gary Payton II

With the obvious connection from his father, Gary Payton — an OSU Sports Hall of Famer — Payton II strongly considered following his father when his time at Salt Lake City Community College was nearly over. In the end, it came down to a late-night decision in Nov. 2013.

“I was just up thinking, ‘I don’t think nothing can go wrong if I go to my dad’s alma mater,’” he said, now leading OSU in scoring, rebounds, assists and steals. “It’s kind of a win-lose if it goes wrong and I don’t play the way the way that I’m playing. The next morning, I called coach (Craig) Robinson and I was like, ‘I’m going to play for you next season.’ Right after, I called my dad and told him and told my mom. A couple hours later, it was everywhere.”

The first words from his dad?

“He was like, ‘I’m proud of you. Keep working,’” Payton II said.

Tres Tinkle

The son of head coach Wayne Tinkle, Tres spent his senior year of high school back in Missoula, Mont., while his father entered his first year in Corvallis. Tres had never been coached by his dad in any level of basketball, but he changed that when deciding on OSU. He waited a little while before telling his dad, however, due to some ulterior motives.

“He always knew, but I tried to milk it out and try to drag it on, see what I could get out of it,” Tres said with a laugh. “But he’s pretty stubborn, so he wasn’t going to give me much.”

When Tres finally informed his father of his decision, he couldn’t help but add a little flair. When he was getting his senior photos done in Montana, he took a few of the photos while wearing an OSU jersey. His mom and sister visited coach Tinkle in Sept. 2014, giving coach Tinkle the framed photo and a card with a note from Tres saying he wanted to play for his dad and “how cool and special of an opportunity it would be.” As soon as coach Tinkle read the note, his sister and mom immediately messaged Tres so he could call his dad “right after he read it.”

The card Tres wrote his note on had the title ‘Make a Wish’ and Tres wrote how his wish was coming true to play for his dad. The picture frame with Tres’ photo now hangs in coach Tinkle’s office.