RICHMOND, Va. - What started six years ago in Virginia comes back to Virginia Tuesday - via Texas.
Tuesday night, Norfolk native Matt Coleman - now the starting point guard for the University of Texas, returns to his home state. But he's not the only former Virginia resident celebrating a homecoming as VCU hosts the Texas Longhorns at 7pm.
Coleman's head coach at Texas is former VCU head men's basketball coach Shaka Smart. Tuesday at the Siegel Center, Smart leads his new team in a game vs. his old team.
Coleman, who starred at Maury High School before transferring to Oak Hill Academy, says Coach Smart (then the head coach at VCU) began recruiting him as an eighth grader.
"I thought my last time in Virginia playing was in my high school days," Coleman admitted in an interview for News 3. "I'm very excited to play in that environment. I remember taking visits there and watching them play when Coach Smart was the coach and the atmosphere was unbelievable. So I know going back with Coach Smart, the gym is going to be a sight to see."
Tuesday's game is expected to be one of the most emotional in VCU history. Tickets are selling for more than $100 on the secondary market - making Coleman's task a bit more difficult.
"My Mom sent me a list, telling me she needed 40 tickets," Coleman said smiling. "I'm expecting a lot of family there."
Coleman enters Tuesday's contest with an impressive 28-to-5 assist-to-turnover ratio (5.6 ratio) and leads the team in steals (11).
Shaka Smart spent six years (2009-10 through 2014-15) as the head coach at VCU and posted a 163-56 (.744) mark. He took the Rams to five NCAA Tournaments in his six seasons, including a run to the 2011 Final Four.
Tip-off at VCU's Stuart C. Siegel Center is set for 7pm Tuesday night. News 3 will have live coverage all evening, including an exclusive postgame 1-on-1 interview with Matt Coleman.