Nov. 2, 2009
RAMON COMES BACK TO PITT
As part of our Countdown to Tipoff features, we will profile several of the 2009-10 Pitt men’s basketball players or a certain aspect of the program. Today, we feature former Pitt player Ronald Ramon, who is back in town to rehab an injury. The rest of the schedule for the week: Tuesday: Where are They Now?, former Pitt players and their whereabouts in professional basketball; Wednesday: Profile on Chase Adams; Thursday: Pitt Basketball Personality Profiles; Friday: TBA.
Pitt coach Jamie Dixon constantly says that he wants to make Pitt a second home for his players. He doesn’t want it simply to be a place where they attend school, play basketball and move on. Instead, he wants Pitt to be a place that the players come back to.
Former Panther guard Ronald Ramon, a 2008 Pitt graduate, took that to heart.
Ramon, who began playing professionally in Argentina after four years with Pitt, is currently back living and training in Pittsburgh, preparing for the next step in his professional career.
Once one of the most dangerous 3-point threats in the Big East, Ramon took his skills to the professional ranks, where he saw success immediately. This past year, he starred with Lanus Buenos Aires, where he registered points in all 40 contests that he played. He reached 20-plus points eight times and reached double-figures in 28 games. But with just four games left to play in the season, he tore his anterior cruciate ligament and was forced off the court. It was obvious after that happened that he wanted to come back to Pittsburgh and rehab.
“[Pitt trainer] Tony Salesi was the first person I called after the surgery,” Ramon said. “He’s been there since day one. It’s great having the support of a school like this.”
Ramon traveled back to Pittsburgh and started a rigorous rehabilitation and training schedule. His knee healed quickly and, this past Friday, he was cleared to play again. He and his agent are now simply looking at several options to see what step is next.
“It could be a week or it could be a month,” Ramon said. “We’re just looking at the market now.”
During his at Pitt, Ramon was one of the biggest 3-point threats in the Big East. He finished his career with a 39-percent clip from the outside and is one of 36 players in Panther history to score 1,000 points.
One of the best aspects of Ramon’s game is his versatility. At Pitt, Ramon was a starter at shooting guard, but played the point when needed and even stepped into the role of starting point guard when Levance Fields went down with a foot injury in December of 2007. With Fields on the sideline and Mike Cook out with a knee injury, Ramon kept Pitt above water for much of the Big East season. He hit a game winning 3-pointer during a home contest against West Virginia and eventually helped lead the Panthers to the 2008 Big East Tournament championship.
“Overall, I think winning the Big East Tournament as a team was my biggest highlight,” Ramon said. “Just how focused we were as a team…We had that mentality that we wanted to win, and we just took it.”
Check back tomorrow for more updates on former Pitt players and their whereabouts.