In the end, Levi Yancy wanted to stay close to home.

The 6-foot-7 White Oak senior post committed to Tyler Junior College on Tuesday.

This decision concludes an illustrious high school career at White Oak that included consecutive Class 2A state championships in 2012-13, two 2A all-state selections (2012-13), and the Texas Association of Basketball Coaches 2A Player of the Year award. Yancy was also named Boys Basketball Super Team Player of the Year.

"Really, it was for my mom," said Yancy, describing why he chose to stay close to home. "I feel like my mother's faith is strong, and she wanted me to stay close. It's truly a blessing to be so close to her. I thank God."

Yancy chose TJC over offers from conference foe Angelina College in Lufkin and NCAA Division II program Texas A&M-Commerce. He was recruited by several schools at all levels, including NCAA Division I programs such as Louisiana Tech and South Alabama.

Yancy said he's been told that he'll play the 3 spot for the Apaches, which will be different than playing the 4 and 5 spots in the lane that he was so accustomed to as the shot-blocking artist for the Roughnecks.

Yancy is pleased with the position change.

"I'm grateful I get to show my skill set," Yancy said. "I get to show what (White Oak) coach (Ron) Boyett has taught us. Dribbling, shooting, and passing are fundamentals you have regardless of position. I'll get to step back and shoot more from the outside."

Yancy averaged 12 points, 10 rebounds, and three blocks per game in 2012-2013 for the Roughnecks. White Oak went 104-6 in the last three seasons with Yancy playing varsity basketball.

TJC, an NJCAA Division I program, competes in the Region XIV Conference, which has long been considered one of the nation's top junior college men's basketball conferences. Yancy said he's looking forward to facing the challenge of the competition and the increased physical play.

"It's great competition, tremendous really," said Yancy. "Boyett teaches us to be very physical in practice. No question that'll help me adapt going into my first year."

In the end, Yancy will be a 35-minute car ride from White Oak, and he's got something other than basketball on his mind.

"Most importantly, I want to go there and make good grades," he said. "You go to college for an education. That comes first. Basketball is just the blessing that allows me to achieve that."