Wildcat of the Week


Photo credit: Franky Renteria

Isaiah Ellis is a junior forward for the Chico State men’s basketball team. During his first year as a starter, Ellis averaged 12.4 points and 5.8 rebounds per game and has emerged as one of the leaders of the team. He has improved as a player every year and the Wildcats will need him to show up if the team wants to make a run in the NCAA Championship Tournament.

How does it feel to be one of the most important pieces of the team this year?

“It feels good. Throughout my career here, my role as a player has grown for this team each year. And I feel like this year my role to be a leader and a threat on the court is one I’ve been waiting for. When I came to Chico I was behind two players who were a big part of the team at the time, Amir Carraway and Jordan Semple. Since my freshman year I wanted to be like those two. I wanted to be the guy that the team can go to if we need a bucket, or if we need to get a stop on defense.”

How has your twin sister motivated you as an athlete?

(Ellis’ sister, Tyler, is currently a senior on the New Mexico State women’s basketball team.)

“She’s always been a motivation. During the pregame, I wear a New Mexico State shirt underneath my warm-up shirt for her. My sister and I always competed with each other growing up and she’s helped me through a lot. I don’t know if she knows it but she gives me the drive to compete to always get better.”

Photo credit: Franky Renteria

What are your goals for the rest of this season and what do you think you can improve on for next season?

The only goal now is to win a west region championship and the national championship. In terms of improvement, I’m always trying to improve my game for next season. I’m working on handling the ball better and continuing to stretch my range and my game.

Patrick Pace can be reached at [email protected] or @patpacesports on Twitter.