Glendale’s Monty Johal commits to Tennessee State basketball

By Jordan Burton (For

The wait is finally over…

After what seemed like an eternity, Glendale senior Monty Johal confirmed his verbal commitment to Tennessee State on Friday evening.

“I’m just taking it as a blessing and the feeling that I trusted the process and I feel like everything worked itself out and I’m right where I belong,” said Johal. “That’s where I’m satisfied at.”

Johal received interest from Missouri State, UNLV and Santa Clara, but ultimately decided that TSU was the best fit. New Tennessee State coach Brian “Penny” Collins – who took over for current Missouri State coach Dana Ford – began recruiting Johal immediately.

“They got involved with me last week when I was playing in the NY2LA Swish and Dish and I had previously known one of the assistants (Ben Walker) who had given me my very first offer,” said Johal.

“I picked TSU because the coaching staff is great and they see something in me a lot of other coaches didn’t. I also felt like I was wanted and that was very important to me.“

Johal was the Ozark Conference Player of the Year and owns the Springfield Public School scoring record.

He now turns his focus towards ending TSU’s NCAA Tournament drought. The Tigers haven’t been to the Big Dance since 1994.

That goal is a joint one, fitting nicely with the mission of continuing to prove doubters wrong.

Johal wasn’t married to the idea of solely playing D-1 basketball, but now that he has the opportunity, he wants to make the most of it.

“I wasn’t really set on doing Division 1; I was open to all levels,” said Johal. “But, I felt with the work Ive put in that I definitely needed to weigh out my options and see what was best for me.

“I’m ready to get back in the gym and continue to work on my game and I just plan to take what’s mine and I wanna make sure I leave every game with the opposing coach wondering why they didn’t offer me.”