With a full offseason of recruiting under their belts, Blinn College men’s basketball coach Scott Schumacher and his staff have pieced together a team that is more than capable of competing in the tough Region XIV Conference.
The second-year head coach has handpicked some of the top recruits from Texas, Louisiana and Chicago to rebound from last season’s 12-19 record.
“Last year our freshmen were our main guys and we had to play them all the time,” Schumacher said. “They had to be our leading scorers, our leading defenders. This year, the sophomores are our front-line guys, and our freshmen don’t have to be thrown in the fire right away. They can learn as they go.”
The Buccaneers return three players in guards Macari Brooks and Terrell Guy, and 6-foot-8 forward Kendall Deveaux. They also get more of a sophomore presence with transfers Jourdan Stickler (Morehead State), Eddie Alcantara (Western Kentucky), Cornell Barnett (Louisiana-Lafayette) and Jacoby Green (Dodge City Community College).
“We feel like this is going to be a special year. We have a lot of good character and team chemistry,” Brooks said. “We’ve got a couple of Division I players who transferred in, so we should be more mature in the game and know how to win.”
Schumacher’s thoughts on this year’s players:
Macari Brooks: “He’s a very good player. He’s athletic, he can score, he can shoot. He’s been doing a great job.”
Terrell Guy: “Terrell actually played 26 minutes in our Region XIV tournament game last year. There was an opportunity for him to step up when guys were injured, and he really played well for us.”
Kendall Deveaux: “Kendall got hurt last year –– he missed the first six weeks, and when you’re a freshman, that’s like going into an Algebra class from step one to step four. Kendall has put on some weight from his freshman year and he’s steadily improved. He’s a big body in the paint who plays extremely hard.”
Cornell Barnett: “He gives us a presence in the paint rebounding, blocking shots and scoring off the block. He can also shoot the three. He’s a good player.”
Jourdan Stickler: “He was the player of the year in the city of Baltimore. He was also a National Honor Society student in high school. He can really shoot the ball.”
Eddie Alcantara: “He’s very athletic, can really shoot the ball and he’s very competitive.”
Jacoby Green: “He’s been a very good player for us, and he has a very good demeanor on the floor. He has a really good feel and can shoot and get to the rack. He’s a really quality player.”
Jalan McCloud: “He was the MVP of the Texas High School Coaches Association’s all-star game. He was also the MVP of his district in high school. He is a very good player, and a very good point guard. He can score and also get his teammates involved.”
Lionheart Leslie: “He was rated the fifth best player in the state of Louisiana; basically he was the No. 1 point guard coming out of Louisiana. He’s as tough as nails. He can shoot and he’s very competitive.”
Trae Barber: “He’s a really good athlete who can score. His game is going to develop. He’s come in with a good attitude and work ethic and he’s really getting better every day. He has a chance to be a really good player.”
Cody Everitt: “He was a big-time high school athlete. He was the quarterback for the football team, he was all-district in basketball and a first-team all-district shortstop in baseball. We got Cody in one of our tryouts. What I really like about him is he’s got a very good body, and he’s able to move on the court really well. One thing I noticed about him in tryouts is he moves his hips very well. He’s got a big body, he can shoot the ball and he’s a good kid.”
Broderick and Roderick Harris (twins): “They played at Kingdom Prep in Des Moines, Iowa, last season, but the year before they played at Houston Jones, a team they took to the regional championship game. They were co-MVPs along with Josh Gray, who signed with Texas Tech. They’re very competitive, they’re big and strong –– they don’t really have a position, but you could play them at any of the guard positions. They’re very, very, competitive.”
Eric Ross: “He’s 6-foot-6 and a rebounding, shot-blocking player. That’s what he does. He has great twitch with his muscles. He’s very strong, very athletic and can run.”
Kyle Wilson: “After his freshman year, he was ranked the No. 3 player in the nation and committed to Baylor. Then he hurt his knee and had to have surgery. The Baylor offer was taken away and he kept working very hard to get back. We are very lucky to have him at Blinn.”
For more information on Blinn men’s basketball, visit www.buccaneersports.com.
(Story & photo Courtesy: Matt Kaiser, Blinn Information)