>Buff is first Division I signee in years
Jacoby Ellsbury's sports life is moving onward and upward even though basketball season has barely begun for the Madras High senior.
His ascension will start next fall at Oregon State University, where Ellsbury has returned a national letter of intent to play baseball for the Beavers.
The senior becomes the first athlete from Madras High since the 1970s, from available accounts, to be headed to an NCAA Division I program. Oregon State's baseball program is a member of the Pac-10 North conference.
An all-league outfielder for Madras who led the team in extra-base hits, Ellsbury is expected to be an outfielder by the Oregon State staff.
Beavers coaches described Ellsbury with phrases like "good, raw speed," and "has the talent to play at this level."
Ellsbury said he is looking forward to the "challenge" of playing baseball at a major college.
"He has the qualities to be a true lead-off hitter," the Oregon State coaches said.
Madras High baseball coach Bruce Reece described Ellsbury as a "great, all-around athlete." His overall athleticism was also pointed to by the Oregon State staff.
His defensive speed and shooting helped Ellsbury earn honorable mention on an all-state basketball team last winter along with the all-league baseball notice. Madras missed out on a playoff spot by one-game in baseball after having played in the Oregon 3A basketball tournament during Ellbury's junior season.