Trey Blue Leaves Fordham for Illinois State, Says Jio Fontan Should be Released
Former Fordham guard Trey Blue has committed to Illinois State and says Fordham point guard Jio Fontan should be allowed to leave, too.
The 6-foot-3, 195-pound Blue was one of two players to obtain his release from Fordham and committed to Illinois State on Thursday. He will sit for one year as per NCAA regulations, paying his way in the process, and then have three years of eligibility remaining.
“I’m going to Illinois State,” Blue said Friday by phone. “Through my year at Fordham I had a rough year. I had family issues.”
Blue’s girlfriend of five years, Jillian Henry, lost her sister and niece when they were murdered Jan. 24 in Chicago.
Henry’s sister, Nova Henry, 24, and her 9-month-old daughter, Ava, were found shot to death in her Chicago apartment. Nova Henry was the mother of Eddy Curry’s 3-year-old-son, who was found unharmed at the scene.
Curry is a 6-foot-11 forward with the New York Knicks. Henry’s mother found her daughter and granddaughter in the apartment, officials said.
“The woman who was murdered was Eddy Curry’s ex-girlfriend,” Blue said. “She was my girlfriend’s sister. She had two kids with him. It was his kid. Both of them [were his]. The little boy [who witnessed the murders] is still alive.”
Blue said he is transferring to be closer to home in South Holland, Ill., but is also fed up with the Fordham program.
“I was uncomfortable with the basketball program way before the tragedy ever happened,” said Blue. “Due to how I ‘m feeling and the tragedy that happened, that was a lot on my shoulders. I just wanted to get out of here and go closer to home.”
Blue said he played well in the immediate aftermath of the tragedy, scoring 12 points, including Fordham’s final six in the their lone Atlantic 10 victory over St. Bonaventure.
While both Blue and sophomore guard Mike Moore were released after the season to seek transfers, Fontan, a 6-1 point guard who starred at St. Anthony in Jersey City, has been denied his release on several instances by the Fordham program and administration. Blue and Fontan were roommates.
“The situation with Jio is just not right,” Blue said. “He doesn’t want to be here. He”s not going to be here. I think they should just give him his release and let him move on with his life. He’s not going to play anyway, so I think they should let him move on.”
Blue said Fontan had agreed not to play at Rutgers or any local Big East school if he transfers.
“Jio said that if he got a release saying he couldn’t go to Rutgers, he would accept it,” Blue said. “The Fordham community, they think he’s going to Rutgers, that’s not it. After the year he had I would believe Jio has more options than Rutgers. They should give him his release and let him make a decision that’s best for his future.”
Fontan leaves for Puerto Rico May 27 to play with the U19 National Team, and it appears his future will not be determined by that date. After that Puerto Rico goes to France and then back to Puerto Rico for more training.
Fontan and Rutgers guard Mike Rosario will play for Puerto Rico in the 2009 FIBA U19 World Championship for Men in Auckland, New Zealand. Both are of Puerto Rican heritage.
(Photo courtesy Fordham and Daily News)
Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.