Its been 4 days that Jio Fontan will remember for the rest of his life. Fontan, USC's Junior PG who transferred from Fordham last year has played both Kansas and Tennessee this in the last four days winning a big game tonight at Tennessee contributing 13 points in a 65-64 win.
Many questioned whether Fontan could actually play at this level even though he has competed at the highest level of High School, AAU and international (FIBA) basketball. Fontan was a starter and captain on a 2008 St. Anthonys team that went 32-0. In 2009, he led the world in assists as the starting PG for Puerto Rico at the FIBA 19U World Championship. That same year he was the A-10 Rookie of the year leading Fordham in points and assists. Yet even with that type of basketball resume some people questioned his ability to play at a high major Division I program.
PR Playmakers Founder Todd Washington is a close family friend and was instrumental in bringing Jio to Puerto Rico to play for the 2009 19U National Team said," Jio is a really special young man. He comes from a family that has excelled and prevailed through some turbulent situations. His drive and work ethic are unmatched for young man his age. I'm so proud of him and how he continues to exceed peoples' expectations. His dad has instilled the drive and work ethic that ensure he will succeed in whatever he chooses to do. A lot of people doubted him when he left Fordham and he used that as motivation. He knew he could play anywhere and against anyone. He just needed a chance to showcase his game and USC gave him that chance. He loves being at USC and he and KO (USC Coach Kevin O'neill) have a really good relationship."
It's only been two games and Fontan has showed his willingness to take big shots and be a leader whether he is on the court or on the sidelines cheering for his teammates. He is 1-1 in his first two games and will be instrumental if USC's has a chance to get to the big dance.