Posted On: 09/13/18 1:40 PM
How many young basketball players proudly list “second efforts” and the “little things” as their strengths? As someone who has asked the “What are your strengths?” question hundreds of times, let me tell you, it’s really only Robert Cole (2019). He’s the only one! The 6’4”-6’5” forward out of Wayne prides himself on that sort of thing.
“My best strengths? Offensively, it would be my offensive rebounds, my second chance efforts on the boards, hitting a jump shot,” Cole started. “Just the second chance efforts, that’s the important thing I got, what I contribute.
“Defensive side, I can basically guard I think every man. I communicate pretty well on D. I box-out every play. Do all the fundamental things right, all the little things right. That’s what I’m really good at, doing the little things right.”
Cole, he says, could comfortably transition into a wing role as time goes on. However, he has acted as a forward since we started evaluating him as a rising junior. Although he’s not a towering figure, his muscular frame, strong base, and attention to detail allows him to rebound and finish inside against forwards.
Cole’s mastering of post player fundamentals is going to land him at a college program even if most 6’4” post players can’t translate.
“Capital, I think Heidelberg was looking at me … Findlay was sending me some stuff,” Cole said, when asked about his recruiting situation.
Capital is clearly the team he talks to most often. He will visit the Columbus-area program in October. He also plans on taking a trip to Heidelberg at the end of September.
His decision will boil down to who can provide the best education and an enjoyable college experience overall. Cole, a 3.0 GPA student with an 18 ACT score, is interested in the medical field. He’ll re-take the ACT by the way.
A strong senior season for Cole could welcome more characters into his recruiting arena. With Wayne graduating the trio of Darius Quisenberry, DeShon Parker, and Christian “Blue” Smith, there’s reason to believe that Cole could breakout.
“We only have like two or three returning varsity players,” he said. “We got to step up and lead the team.”
Cole attempted just under two shots per game as a junior off the bench. Sustaining his efficiency and creating quick looks for himself on post touches and put-backs would solidify his value as a recruit.
In preparation for an increased workload, Cole goes to the YMCA to get shots up before school and attends team workouts Monday through Friday where he leads by example. Despite losing three Division I college athletes from their starting lineup, Cole assured us that the expectations at Wayne never falter.
If you’re looking for an indicator of that trajectory, Cole tells us he will sign-up for Sunday’s Prep Hoops Top 250 Expo at Pickerington North. The event will go from noon to 5PM and coaches can pre-register here.