Always a crowd favorite as a member of the Jacksonville High School basketball team, Raybon Riden took the necessary step to insure that his days of playing the sport that he dearly loves does not end any time soon.
Riden signed with Cedar Valley College, a NJCAA-member school that is located in Lancaster, Texas, late Tuesday morning in a ceremony that took place inside the Jacksonville High Fieldhouse.
Many family members were on hand to share the event with Riden, in addition to Cedar Valley head mens basketball coach Chris Carter, Jacksonville athletic director and head football coach, Chris Taber and Mark Alexander, Tribe head boys basketball coach.
Riden seemed grateful for the opportunity to join the Suns.
“I know that many people don't get the opportunity to play at the next level, so I know that it is a big privilege to play (college basketball),” Riden said.
Riden said that he was formally recruited by two schools, and that deciding on Cedar Valley was an choice for him to make.
“Cedar Valley was the second school that recruited me,” Riden explained. “But, when I went over there and got to meet coach Carter and learn about their program, I knew that it was the right place for me...and it's close to home.”
Riden went on to add how important the time was that he spent learning basketball from three coaches; the late Stacy Hunter, (former Jacksonville High head boys basketball coach) Brent Kelley, and Alexander.
“Coach Stacy Hunter was there with me for the longest, since I was about six years old, and coach Kelley was with me from the seventh grade until last year and then I was with coach Alexander this year; so I have been fortunate to have been with some pretty good coaches.”