Andre Bottoms

Posted On: 09/11/19 7:04 PM

The weekly column is back with another variety of three different questions asked. I gave a very quick little preview of the WCAC for this year, how players should go about playing in different events and two underrated seniors in the DMV.

“With all the recent transfers from St. John’s, PVI and O’Connell who do you predict will be the top 1-5 teams in the WCAC?” –@all_metelite

I am going to touch on who I believe the top four teams in the WCAC are right now if the season were to start today. I am only going to touch on the first four right now because I have a more in depth preview of the WCAC coming out for before the season and second, it is still early, rosters and stuff all along those lines tend to change from now till November. So please remember, this is just what I think right now. My official preview will be out in the coming weeks.

In my eyes, the defending tournament champions of the WCAC, Gonzaga, is the favorite to win the conference again or at least finish at the top of the standings in the regular season. They are pretty much getting everyone back from last years team led by Terrance Williams, Chuck Harris and Myles Stute but will also have three talented pieces that are still underclassmen in Judah Mintz, Devin Dinkins and Jared Turner

With Jeremy Roach back for PVI, I like them to finish second in the conference. Dug McDaniel and co player of the year in the WCAC, Trevor Keels and unsigned senior, Josiah Freeman, return for the Panthers and they also bring in some talented guards in Marvin Brimage and Deshawn Harris-Smith. Paul VI always tends to have a really good regular season which is why I give them the slight advantage over DeMatha at the moment. 

At three, I like DeMatha. Earl Timberlake and Hunter Dickinson are going to be a deadly combo for the Stags and they could easily finish at the top of the standings. Newcomer Jordan Hawkins will step into the rotation right away with Elijah Hawkins being the lead floor general for Mike Jones. 2022 Tyrell Ward is also going to see an enhanced role.

St. John’s is likely to finish 4th in my opinion who will be led by three seniors in Ishmael Leggett, John Square and John “Manzie” Wilson. They don’t have a junior on the team but will rely heavily on talented freshmen.

“What are your recommendations to players before they play in showcase events/tournaments?” –@pr0ia

First and foremost, players should always give it their all and best no matter what type of event they are playing in. Even if the event is not “live” and college coaches are not allowed to be present, these prospects should always play like they are trying to earn a scholarship. Usually when events are not live, there will be media members and scouts that have plenty of connections to college coaches who can relay the message on how you performed that certain day. Overall, no matter the situation, never treat an event like it doesn’t matter because most of the time there are important eyes all around the gym.

“Who are two underrated players looking to make a splash their senior year before college?” –@edwards_wes

For the DC/MD area, I am curious to see what 2020 Towson commit, Cory Barnes, is capable of doing this high school season at Archbishop Carroll. He verbally committed to Towson back in June and I love the get for the local program. Barnes is a guy that plays with a high motor, can guard high major players and has the ability to put the ball in the basket in a variety of ways. If he plays to the level that I think he can play at, a year from now we might be talking how Towson got a steal in Barnes.

For the state of Virginia, I would love to see Andre Bottoms of Oscar Smith have a big senior year. Bottoms is a guy that I believe can play the lead guard at the low major level. He is not the biggest guy on the court but he is someone that you can constantly rely on to run your team. He is a few big time performances away from really establishing his name on some local low major recruiting boards.