Jordan Williams was looking for a school with a fervent and supportive fan base in college, much like the one he's grown accustomed to at Torrington (Conn.) High School.
Williams found what he was looking for during a September visit to College Park.
"I was with Sean Mosley and Landon Milbourne," Williams said. "[No. 2] Maryland played [No. 1] Wake Forest in a soccer game and the whole fan base was just crazy. I couldn't believe it. It was awesome; the support [Maryland had at the] soccer game. It was pouring rain outside and the place was packed, so I can only imagine what it's like indoors [for basketball games]."
It wasn't until this summer that Williams emerged as a legitimate high-major prospect. Several standout performances with the New England Playaz AAU team opened the eyes of coaches across the country. Williams still can't believe how quickly his basketball fortunes changed.
"It's a dream come true for me. ... I didn't think in the beginning of the summer I'd be in this situation," Williams said. "People were telling me I had what it takes, but it still hasn't hit me that I'm signing Thursday. I have worked hard and it's a great opportunity. ... It's really not hit me at all. I'm still waiting for someone to wake me up."
Here's an introduction to Williams.
Name: Jordan Williams
Birthplace: Torrington, Conn.
Hometown: Torrington, Conn.
Position: Power forward
Rankings: Scout.com -- Four stars, No. 16 center. Rivals.com -- Three stars, No. 25 power forward, No. 102 player nationally.
High School: Torrington (Conn.) High School
Junior statistics: 28 points, 16 rebounds
Runner-up: St. John's
Other schools considered: Indiana, Xavier, Villanova, Florida State, Arizona, California, Marquette
Favorite NBA player: Tim Duncan
Favorite NBA team: Boston Celtics
Favorite all-time Terp: Juan Dixon, Steve Francis
Favorite music: Lil Wayne, Kanye West
Favorite book: The Pursuit of Happyness by Chris Gardner
Favorite movie: The Pursuit of Happyness
Favorite TV show: Fresh Prince of Bel Air
Favorite food: Fried chicken
Favorite high school class: Justice
Favorite thing about College Park: "I think the family atmosphere would probably be the best [thing about College Park]."
Hobbies: "I like to fish, hang out with my brother ... play video games."
Intended major: Criminal justice
Something that not many people know about you: "If I didn't play basketball, I'd probably do something in music."
Best basketball moment: "Probably winning the state championship during my freshman year."
Role model: "Probably my father, just because if it wasn't for him, I wouldn't have even touched a basketball and wouldn't even be close to where I am today. Same with my mother."
Why Maryland? "Because of the basketball, obviously, the Comcast Center is unbelievable and playing in the ACC. But also without a basketball in my hand, criminal justice, which is what I'll major in, is the No. 1 program in the country. So that just topped it off right there."