BELMAR, N.J. -- The Rutgers-led Gutter Cleaners won for the first time Thursday in the Jersey Shore…
Shore League Preview: Wally Judge
A hectic, trying two months for the former McDonald's All-American, who transferred from Kansas State to Rutgers after his sophomore season, is finally calming down. Judge, enrolled in classes on the Banks, is ready to move on.
"It just feels good to finally be situated instead of going through the process and trying to figure out where I'm going to go," Judge said after an optional morning workout at the Louis Brown Athletic Center. "I feel good to finally have an established place where I'm looking to make a change."
Because of NCAA transfer regulations, Judge has to sit out this season, but can work with his teammates as much as he wants.
For Judge, however, "sitting out" is not the correct phrase for his plans.
"Work, that's the only thing on my mind," Judge said. "I'm staying in the gym, staying in the weight room, getting stronger and getting faster and more skilled. When I come in for the 2012-2013 season, I can make an immediate impact. Even the time when I'm sitting out, I'm going to support my teammates."
Judge was a freshman on the Kansas State team that made a run to the Elite Eight before losing to Butler. That experience is already a driving force for the recently enrolled freshmen in the program.
"A lot of these freshmen know how to win on the high school level," Judge said. "A lot of them are good. But when I came out, I was a McDonald's All-American, but I wasn't ready for the college game and atmosphere. I wasn't ready for that up-tempo style. But in that year I learned. In that deep run through the tournament, I learned and watched guys in front of me."
While sitting out, Judge said he will do everything he can to help the team mentally and in practice.
"I think that's my role this year — to teach them how to win at this level and prepare them to win at this level and remain consistent," Judge said. "The biggest thing to winning and pushing deep into the tournament is the team unity. You saw UConn do it last year."
Judge is one of nine Rutgers basketball players set to play in the Jersey Shore League next week in Belmar, N.J. Initially, Judge said he considered playing in a league closer to home in Washington, D.C., but is glad he chose to stay in New Jersey.
"I think staying up here will build more team camaraderie and help me get to know the younger guys better," Judge said. "I want to establish that leader role so to speak.
"I have no doubt that they have that potential this year even without me on the court. I'll still be cheering them on and supporting them. They're going to hear my voice. The team chemistry will be great this year and that's going to push us."
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