Pitt basketball gets its 3rd verbal commitment | TribLIVE.com
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Jerry DiPaola

There’s an empty spot on the wall in Edwin Gonzalez’s office at Bishop Loughlin High School in Brooklyn, N.Y. Next to it is a photo of former Pitt guard Ronald Ramon.

If Gonzalez has his way, Justin Champagnie, the most recent member of Pitt’s 2019 recruiting class, will be joining Ramon on that wall.

“I can’t wait to put Justin’s picture up there,” he said.

Champagnie is a 6-foot-7, 205-pound small forward at Bishop Loughlin where Gonzalez is the head coach. “You got a good one there,” Gonzalez said in a message to Pitt fans.

“He can make a major impact right away. He can play as a freshman,” Gonzalez said.

“He is going to add a different flair, more athleticism (to Pitt’s team). He has a knack for scoring. He runs the floor very well, and he can get to the basket.”

Commenting on his player’s jumping ability, Gonzalez said, “He can jump out of the gym, forget about it.”

Gonzalez described Champagnie as a “slasher.”

Champagnie and his twin brother, Julian, helped lead Bishop Loughlin to a 23-4 record this season.

The twins initially were recruited as a package and visited Pitt together. When Justin returns this summer, he will be away from his brother for the first time in their lives.

Gonzalez isn’t concerned about their ability to adjust to being apart.

“It may be tough at the very beginning,” he said. “They have been together all the time. But they are both character kids, they are both high character kids.”

There is some thought that Julian will attend a prep school, but Gonzalez declined to confirm that.

“I told him to make sure it’s the right fit,” said Gonzalez, who also coached Ramon at All Hallows High School in the Bronx and Keith Williams of No. 24 Cincinnati at Bishop Loughlin.

Justin Champagnie, who has offers from Cincinnati, Dayton, Rutgers and Seton Hall, is rated the 111th overall 2019 prospect in the nation and a four-star by 247Sports. He is a three-star and 123rd in Rivals.com’s rankings.

Pitt also has verbal commitments from 6-6 forward Gerald Drumgoole of La Porte, Ind., and 6-8 center Karim Coulibaly of Scotland (Pa.) Performance Institute. Capel currently has two more available scholarships for next season.

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