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Posted On: 08/21/18 8:40 AM
Isaiah Walker (2021) is a 6’3”-6’4” guard/wing from Wyoming showing signs of becoming a three-level scorer. Both with Cincinnati Royals Blue and in training sessions with his older brother Tyrice Walker Jr., he has worked to become an even more complete player the last several months.
“Going into the AAU season, I really looked to become more of a leader,” Walker said. “My parents and my coaches have been getting on me to be more vocal and things like that … and focusing on the defensive end.”
Walker is lengthy with a pretty filled-out upper body for a 15-year-old, giving him a physical advantage against most matchups.
“I think my length is really big, especially for me being a taller guard,” he explained. “If I’m guarding a smaller guard, I got my hands out with active hands and it’s hard for them to see and to operate the offense.”
Playing in an athletic and physical Cincinnati Hills League, Walker averaged 3.7 rebounds as a full-time freshman starter, yet another way he affects the game defensively. Expect that number to rise throughout his career, in part because of his growth potential — his parents’ stand 6’6” and 5’9”.
Walker also shot 41 percent last year on his way to 8.4 PPG, while dishing 2.3 APG.
“I definitely feel like I’m a scorer and I’m really versatile,” Walker said. “I can pass and I can get us into an offense. I can shoot. So I feel like you got to guard me everywhere. You can’t give me anything and I’m always going to be in attack mode, just trying to score and get my teammates involved.”
Walker models his game after his older brother Tyrice Jr., a Summit Country Day graduate currently playing for Thomas More College just 30 minutes south of Cincinnati. Training sessions with him have been the catalyst to his development this summer.
“Since the end of AAU, I’ve really been working to get stronger. I’ve been lifting every day, doing a lot of lower body stuff to get my quads stronger. And I’ve been working with my trainer, my brother. We’ve been doing a lot of shooting and a lot of repetition.”
Walker, a 3.8 GPA student, is one of about five players in the Wyoming program not playing a fall sport. He’s once again focused on being a leader within that group, and the team at large, going into his sophomore season. Wyoming holds team work-outs twice a week but several other player-organized sessions pop-up this time of year.
Between Findlay commit Joey Edmonds, two-sport D-I prospect Evan Prater, and himself, the Cowboys have a chance to capitalize on a legitimate big three next year. They were unceremoniously eliminated in the first round his freshman season but should compete in the Division II OHSAA postseason in 2018-19.
Never too early for Division I programs to begin recruiting obvious talent and Wright State is leading that charge for Walker.
“Wright State, when I started AAU, they’ve been texting nonstop with [Wyoming head] coach [Tim] Edmonds, same with Cleveland State and Western Carolina.
“In Louisville, Wright State came to every game pretty much,” Walker relayed.
Wright State, the reigning Horizon League champions, offered Wyoming teammate Evan Prater on July 15.
Toledo, Walker says, is also entering the picture, telling coach Edmonds they’ll come down to watch him in person this season. Iowa also sent mail to Walker following the playoff loss to Aiken.
Walker’s ultimate goal for his high school career is to reach the Division I level as a college recruit.
“Anywhere D-I is great,” he said. “I want my grandparents and parents to be able to see me play on TV and in person.”
When the time comes, Walker says he will look for a program that wants him and shows eagerness in his development.