Harler Taking Talents to Morgantown

WHEELING – Sunday was definitely a great day to be a Mountaineer for Chase Harler.

And that was just Day 1.

The Wheeling Central rising junior Sunday verbally committed to West Virginia after meeting with coach Bob Huggins following the Elite Camp in Morgantown.

How big?

He gained well over 100 followers on Twitter in a matter of a few hours.

“I knew it was kind of a big deal,” said Harler, who is WVU’s first commit for the Class of 2016. “But I was surprised. I never expected it to blow up the way it did.”

He did have an inkling something was afoot, after Huggins spoke to his father recently.

“He asked if I was coming to the Elite Camp, and of course I was going to be there,” Harler said. “He told me dad, ‘Let’s see what we can do to make him a Mountaineer.’ I wasn’t sure exactly what was going to happen. Thought maybe they would tell me what I had to do to play there. The last two weeks or so, I’ve been freaking out about it.”

Turns out, all he had to do was say yes.

“We met about Noon, after the camp, and after some small talk, he told me, ‘Whenever you are ready (to commit) we are ready. We are all in.’ After about five seconds I said yes. I’m all in, too. That’s where I have wanted to play my whole life. It’s like a dream come true to play for WVU and to play for one of the greatest coaches in the game, Bob Huggins.”

He also got some timely advice from AAU teammate Levi Cook.

The 7-foot former Liberty-Raleigh standout, who now plays at Huntington Prep, verbally committed to WVU before his sophomore year.

“It played a little part in it, for sure,” Harler said. “When we first met, I asked him some questions. Why did you sign with WVU (early)? He told me some of the things I might expect, told me about the coaches and what he has done since he signed. He gave me a lot of good advice and it played a part in it for sure.”

Harler has been on a lot of coaches radar following a state championship season, which included scoring 30 points in the title game victory over Charleston Catholic. He was a first team all-state guard after averaging 22 points, seven rebounds and four assists for the Maroon Knights.

He has already scored over 1,000 points in two seasons,

His goal, however, has remained steadfast. He wanted to be a Mountaineer.

“It’s something I’ve thought about since probably sixth grade, when I started taking basketball more seriously,” the 6-foot-3 Harler said. “My goal since then is I want to be a Mountaineer.”

Obviously, a successful summer on the AAU circuit has helped that goal.

He also said going to the state tournament and winning a title opened a lot of eyes.

He received an offer from Marshall after the Thundering Herd saw him in Charleston.

He had other offers, including Elon and North Carolina State and Virginia had also gotten in on the Maroon Knights standout.

But Huggins’ offer was what he had dreamed of, and he intends to see it through.

“I’ve had a lot of people ask if I was going to make any more visits,” Harler said. “I really appreciate all the offers and those are nice. But I want to be a Mountaineer. This is it for me. I feel like the pressure is off. I feel like it’s where I fit best and I’m excited about it.”

He said he plans on playing his next two seasons at Wheeling Central.

Where he will undoubtedly pick up a lot more followers on Twitter, and around the state.