Georgetown senior John Caprio had every walk-on’s dream come true just before the 2013-14 school year started.
Caprio, a 6-foot-6 North Caldwell, N.J., native who attended Seton Hall Prep, was in the car with his mother, Margaret, driving down the New Jersey Turnpike for his final year of school when his phone buzzed. It was a text from his head coach, John Thompson III.
The text message from Thompson informed Caprio that he was no longer a walk-on and that he was being awarded a scholarship for this, his senior year.
“I think it was more exciting for my mom,” Caprio said. “We were driving back to campus when I got the text and she was just so excited that I had to remind her we were still driving.”
Capro walked on to the team as a freshman during the 2010-11 season. He appeared in four games that season. As a sophomore, he appeared in 11 games.
Last year, as a junior, he appeared in 14 games and averaged 0.6 points and 1.0 rebounds per game. His best game was when he scored four points and grabbed six rebounds in a career-high 12 minutes against Seton Hall.
“It was three years of hard work and it finally paid off,” Caprio said. “I knew we had one extra and I had spoken to Coach Thompson about it during the summer so I thought there might be a chance. I think he had known about it for a while, but wanted to wait until we got closer to the start of the school year to tell me.”
It was the dream-come-true story for any walk-on who comes to college and hopes to impress enough to earn a scholarship.
“It means everything to me,” he said. “It was three years of pushing yourself in practice and doing everything the scholarship players do. Finally to have it culminate and pay off, it’s definitely a great feeling. At the same time, I know that I have to continue to work hard to help the team and I’m going to continue to work as hard as I have for the last three years.”
Caprio and the Hoyas open the 2013-14 regular season on Friday playing Oregon in the Armed Forces Classic at Camp Humphreys in South Korea. Tipoff is slated for 8 p.m. on ESPN.
Release: Georgetown; Photo: Casual Hoya