Tristan Etienne, a 6-10, 210-pound forward from Abbotsford, British Columbia, gave a verbal commitment to Washington.
The Canadian big man is the first 2014 prospect to commit to the Huskies.
“Growing up as a kid when I started watching the NCAA, Washington was a school that I took a liking too,” Etienne said. “When I realized I had a chance to go D-1, it was the school I was shooting for and the school I was dreaming about. I’m just so happy I had the opportunity to go there and play.”
Etienne had offers from Washington State, Utah, Portland, Portland State and Boise State.
“Washington is my dream school and it’s where I wanted to go so when they offered me I decided to get it done,” Etienne said.
Etienne plays for W. J. Mouat Secondary School. His AAU team is DRIVE Basketball.
“I like to think of myself as a defensive player that will protect the basket,” he said. “I like to keep my teammates involved. Good passer. Get rebounds. Block shots. Do everything I can to help my team.”
DRIVE Basketball coach Pasha Bains said Etienne is a perfect fit for the Huskies.
“He’s a 6-10 kid that can move,” said Bains, who played at Clemson. “He doesn’t move like a 6-10 guy. He moves like a guard. He’s fluid. He’s a great shot blocker. He can shoot basketball. He’s a great passer. He works very hard. He’s probably the best kid I’ve ever seen at getting loose balls at his height. And to say that about a 6-10 guy is pretty amazing. He’s a guy who’s very flexible and athletic. Just an overall great player with a lot of upside.
“When you look down the road the next 2-3 years, he’s a kid who hasn’t been in the weight room much. He’s had a couple of injuries that kind of stalled that and I see that as a good thing. These other kids have filled out already. He can probably put on 20-30 pounds as he matures. Washington likes to run and he can do that. He’s a really bright kid. He’s been a 4.0 student and he scored really well on his SAT. He’s just a really good team guy. I think Washington is lucky to have him.”
Unlike Gonzaga, Washington hasn’t plucked many recruits from Canada. Todd MacCulloch (1995-1999) was UW’s last significant player from Canada. Former UW standout Lars Hansen (1973-76) grew up in Coquitlam, B.C.
“Washington has a very good reputation here,” Bains. “A lot of kids look at that as a dream. … To be completely honest there’s very few kids here that could go from B.C. and play at Washington. I think Robert Sacre was one. I’m not sure what happened with Washington and Sacre or if he had an offer.
“But Tristan is a very rare player here. We don’t get these types of players very often and I think that’s why Washington stepped up and took him.”
Here’s video highlights (below) of Etienne.