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Posted On: 08/10/18 3:31 PM
At the 1A level this season, Ankeny Christian Academy forward Caleb Grizzle has a chance to be dominant.
The 6-foot-7 rising senior was borderline dominant last season, especially on the defensive end. And he’s been working this spring and summer to elevate his game.
“I always like to be able to help space the floor, but still be a presence inside on offense. And then, defensively, I like to be the anchor down low and then help get the ball out and run,” said Grizzle. “But recently, I’ve been working a lot on ball-control and being able to attack the hoop off the drive.”
As a junior with the Eagles, Grizzle averaged 12.4 points and 7.7 rebounds per game. Where he really made his mark, though, was on the defensive end, where he swatted away a whopping 3.4 shots per game.
“I think it’s just kind of being in the right place, sliding over in the help defense and just keeping my hands up and trying not to foul,” Grizzle said. “I’ll either get my hands on it or tipping it and keeping the other team from scoring.”
Grizzle has been busy this offseason with hoops. He spent his spring playing with Pure Prep 17U for the April live periods, and in the summer he played exclusively with Ankeny Christian Academy in summer camps.
“With Pure Prep, our tournaments progressively got better as the weekends went on. It was a ton of fun to play alongside Xavier Foster as a big, and then they had some great guards from Illinois. And they gave me an opportunity to play more of a three, where I could spot up for shots and work on guarding quicker players,” said Grizzle.
“With Ankeny Christian, it’s been awesome to see our team grow as one unit, and we’re clicking on all those levels. We’re working on creating an identity. Our summer went great, we played at Kingdom Hoops in a summer league and at NIACC, and they both went really great, we’re just building off that.”
Grizzle’s recruitment is starting to take form, he’s been hearing from mostly D3s so far. And says that’s a level of hoops he’d be eager and willing to play at.
“It’s mostly been Division III interest. I haven’t heard much from any NAIA or Division II schools. But, Northwestern in St. Paul seems very interested and then Loras College has reached out, and I’ve been talking to Central some. And another one is Berry College in Georgia,” said Grizzle.
“I’d definitely be interested in playing at the D3 level, it’d be fun to continue my career in college in whatever way I can. And a goal for senior year is to show that I can be a leader on and off the court and that I’m capable of playing at the next level.”