Growing up in Denver, Josh Repine got a close look at the Colorado men's basketball program.
"I always followed Colorado basketball," the former Kent Denver High School star said. "Initially, when I was younger they weren't very good. My dad and I would always buy tickets at the top row and always move down and could sit courtside for a couple dollars."
It's tougher to get a good seat for a CU game these days, but Repine will have a better seat than ever this year. The 6-foot-3 shooting guard joined the Buffs as a walk-on player this summer.
Repine graduated from Kent Denver in 2013, but spent this past year at New Hampton Prep in New Hampshire. At New Hampton, he was a teammate of Tory Miller, a scholarship freshman for the Buffs.
"Because I wanted top play D-I basketball, I decided to take a prep school year," said Repine, who led Kent Denver to the Class 3A state title game in 2013. "I did an extra year there to give me more opportunities to play at the highest level. I've always wanted to play D-I, because it's the most excitement."
Repine said he had interest from several Division II and Division III schools coming out of high school, but declined those options.
This spring, as he looked for a college team to play for, he said he narrowed his choices to CU and Notre Dame. Then, he spoke extensively with CU assistant Mike Rohn.
"Colorado became No. 1, by a large margin, after that point," Repine said. "It was the perfect fit."
Repine certainly doesn't come into CU with the hype that surrounds his fellow freshmen — Miller and Dominique Collier. Still, head coach Tad Boyle has said that Repine "will be a good addition to our team on a lot of different fronts. He's going to help us in practice, no doubt."
Unlike Miller and Collier, who were dominant for their teams last season, Repine was a role player at New Hampton Prep. His team was loaded with talent, including Miller, Michigan recruit Aubrey Dawkins, Princeton-bound Mike LeBlanc and Tyler Lydon, who has committed to Syracuse for the Class of 2015.
"It's eye-opening how good the competition is out there," Repine said. "I obviously always want to play more, but it was an incredible learning experience. Every day you're practicing against this (great) talent."
So far, Repine is enjoying the same type of experience at CU. Like the rest of his teammates, he spent June in Boulder, taking classes and going through workouts.
The team was allowed to be on the court together just two hours per week, but Repine said, "Even those two hours, I feel like I've grown incredible amounts. I can't imagine from this season to next season how much I'm going to improve."
Repine plays shooting guard and believes he brings a good outside shot and basketball IQ to the Buffs.
As a walk-on, Repine realizes he's probably not going to get much playing time early in his career, but that's OK. He's back home, playing for a team he grew up following.
"I understand my opportunities might be limited, but the nice thing I have is I'm only a freshman," he said. "So, I still have years to grow."