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October 13, 2006

Patterson has throw-back work ethic

Power forward
6-8, 228, Huntington, W.Va.

Rivals.com Rankings
Rivals150 for 2007: No. 14 overall
2007 Power forwards: No. 2

Career Stats
2004-05 (Soph.) 14.0 12.0 6.0

Watch the latest highlights of Patrick Patterson in action
1. What NBA player do you pattern your game after?
No one. I see myself as myself.

2. What's the best part of your game?
My rebounding.

3. What do you still need to work on?
I need to improve my ballhandling and my range on my jumper.

4. Who is the best player you have ever played against?
Blake Griffin, Kevin Love and Cole Aldrich

5. What is your greatest sports moment?
Winning my first state championship as a sophomore.

6. What is your favorite way to get ready for a game?
Before the game, I go in the trainer's room and listen to some old-school music.

7. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Hopefully in the NBA.

Everyone says it. Patrick Patterson is old-school. He doesn't deny it. Everything about him screams throwback.

He wears his hair short. Headbands aren't in his wardrobe. He doesn't talk trash. Even his music collection is peppered with The Temptations and Luther Vandross. On the court, he works the blocks like a 9-to-5 job. Patterson gets low in the post, plays defense, works the offensive boards and wins games at the free-throw line.

"People tell me I'm an old-school guy. They say I'm like, what's his name, Moses Malone," Patterson said.

OK, so his old-school basketball knowledge is not up to par. However, like Malone, Patterson does the little things and wins big. Patterson is looking for his third consecutive state championship, a feat that no other AAA team has done in West Virginia.

Now that is new school.

Rivals.com National Basketball Recruiting Analyst Jerry Meyer said he appreciates Patterson's flair for the undramatic.

"You can always count on Patrick to compete. He is a tenacious defender and rebounder, and when he gets the ball in the post he attacks. There are not a lot of theatrics or showiness to his game, and that is quite refreshing," Meyer said. "Now he has extended his shooting range, so you have a guy you can count on to do the dirty work and a guy who has a versatile scoring game."

Patterson, a teenage kid with an old soul, shrugs off the accolades.

"Around here, it is just hills and mountains and everyone is just laid-back," Patterson said. He doesn't consider himself any different than other residents of Huntington.

"My family and coaches put that in me," Patterson said. "They said there aren't a lot of guys that come out of West Virginia. That is my boost right there. There just aren't too many great players to come out of here."

He has taken that same approach in the recruiting process, despite being one of the most sought after players in the nation. He has already visited Florida, Duke and West Virginia (unofficially last week) and has a visit planned for Kentucky this weekend. Virginia and possibly Wake Forest are on tap, too. No surprise, his recruitment has been just as relaxed and under control as his personality.

"There is no sense of getting worried about it," Patterson says, "I'm just enjoying it."

Rivals.com is unveiling its preseason Elite Team for the Class of 2007. Comprised of the nation's top high school basketball stars, the Elite Team is broken down into position-specific first, second and third teams. These stars will soon be signing with the top college basketball programs en route to the NBA. We will announce one player each weekday from Oct. 2-20.

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