Our cover figures for this month’s edition of PressBox are among the many local basketball players who chose to stay home to play collegiately.
Not only do Mount Saint Joseph alums Darryl Morsell and Jalen Smith play for Maryland, they’re joined by walk-on Will Clark (Loyola Blakefield). UMBC’s roster features incoming transfer Darnell Rogers, a Baltimore native and the son of Lake Clifton legend Shawnta Rogers. Junior Marcel Thompson (Poly) will also suit up for the Retrievers. At Towson, Jason Gibson, Nigel Haughton and Demetrius Mims are on the roster. Gibson and Haughton are freshmen from Severna Park and Bel Air, respectively. Mims, a Long Beach State transfer, is a redshirt freshman out of Poly.
On Loyola’s roster you’ll find a trio of Boys’ Latin alums: sophomore Jaylin Andrews, junior Brandon Bradsher and freshman Cam Spencer. Sophomore Brendan Medley-Bacon (Archbishop Curley) plays for Calvert Hall alum Juan Dixon at Coppin State. Sophomore Damian Chong Qui (McDonogh) plays for Mount St. Mary’s, while the Maryland Eastern Shore roster includes junior Derrick Green (Lake Clifton), senior Jacob McIntosh (Westminster) and freshman Da’Shawn Phillip (Dunbar).
But not every local basketball player chooses to stay local. This month, we present The 15 “Baltimore-Bred College Basketball Players To Watch.” The list is made of the most significant men’s players who are playing collegiately outside of the state this season.
1. UConn Sophomore Brendan Adams (Calvert Hall)
The younger brother of Milwaukee Bucks guard Jaylen Adams (Mount Saint Joseph), Brendan Adams played in 31 games for the Huskies as a freshman and scored more than 1,500 points during his prep career.
2. LSU Freshman James Bishop (Mount Saint Joseph)
After scoring 23.3 points per game during his senior season for the Gaels, Bishop will look to help fill the void left after Tremont Waters (who scored the winner to eliminate Maryland from the NCAA Tournament in March) departed for the NBA.
3. Southern Utah Freshman Josh Cornish (Dulaney) And Senior Dwayne Morgan (St. Frances)
Morgan was once a highly sought-after five-star prospect who chose UNLV instead of schools like Maryland and Georgetown. He has averaged double-digit scoring since transferring to the Thunderbirds in 2017 but was forced to redshirt again after getting hurt after just four games last year. Cornish was granted a redshirt season after playing in just three games last year.
4. Charlotte Senior Drew Edwards (Calvert Hall)
Edwards was a four-star recruit out of high school, but the Calvert Hall alum averaged no more than 3.2 points per game in any of his four seasons with Providence. He’s hoping to re-establish himself with the 49ers as a grad transfer.
5. Houston Junior Justin Gorham (Calvert Hall/ Towson transfer)
Gorham, a native of Columbia, averaged 9.8 points per game as a sophomore for Towson in 2017 before transferring to Houston. He’ll step up in competition after sitting out last season. He may be best known for his buzzer-beating tip-in to lift the Cardinals past John Carroll in the 2015 Baltimore Catholic League title game.
6. Buffalo Freshman LaQuill Hardnett (Perry Hall)
Hardnett was part of the “Twin Towers” that lifted Perry Hall to two state titles along with Anthony Higgs, who transferred from Illinois to Chipola College in Florida. Hardnett is set to debut for the Bulls after transferring from Cincinnati.
7. Canisius Freshman Armon Harried (Lake Clifton)
The son of Dunbar legend Herman “Tree” Harried, the first-year Golden Griffin played for his father in high school, helping the Lakers to a pair of state titles. He also just so happened to be the valedictorian of his senior class at Lake Clifton.
8. Drexel Senior Kurk Lee Jr. (St. Frances)
Speaking of Baltimore basketball legacies, Lee is, of course, the son of the Towson legend of the same name (who played at both Calvert Hall and Dunbar). Entering this season, Lee is just 58 points away from 1,000 for his career with the Dragons.
9. Florida Sophomore Noah Locke (McDonogh)
Locke is also a Charm City basketball legacy, as his parents (Vanessa and Kyle) both played at Coppin State. He made a huge impact as a freshman, hitting 81 3-pointers and averaging 9.4 points per game for the perennial SEC-contending Gators.
10. Rutgers Sophomore Montez Mathis (John Carroll)
A highly-touted four-star recruit out of high school, Mathis made an immediate impact in the Big Ten, averaging 10.2 points per game in conference play as a freshman.
11. George Washington Freshman Chase Paar (Glenelg) And Senior Justin Williams (Annapolis Area Christian School)
Despite losing Terry Nolan Jr. to Bradley, former Mount St. Mary’s coach Jamion Christian still has a few locals on the Colonials’ roster. Williams came on at the end of his junior season in 2019, averaging 11.3 points during the last four games of the season. Paar was a three-star recruit and second-team Baltimore Sun All-Metro honoree last year.
12. Temple Junior De’Vondre Perry (Poly)
Perry has been a major part of the Owls’ rotation during his first two seasons, starting 20 of their 33 games as a sophomore. He finished with three double-digit scoring games last year and made Temple’s President’s Honor Roll.
13. Kentucky Sophomore Immanuel Quickley (John Carroll)
Thought by many to be a likely “one and done” after being a McDonald’s All-American in 2018, the Havre de Grace native averaged just 5.2 points per contest during his first season with the Wildcats. He returned to school with his eyes still very much on an NBA future but finds himself in a crowded backcourt.
14. Northwestern Senior Pat Spencer (Boys’ Latin/ Loyola lacrosse transfer)
The most fascinating of all local prospects, the older brother of the Greyhounds’ Cam Spencer is trying his hand at a season of basketball after one of the greatest careers in the history of college lacrosse, which included winning the Tewaaraton Award in 2019. He could get real minutes for the Wildcats in his only season of eligibility despite not playing hoops for four years.
15. Miami Freshman Anthony Walker (Perry Hall)
Also a part of those Perry Hall state title teams, Walker chose the Hurricanes rather than a number of other schools (including Maryland) and is expected to make an impact on the ACC immediately.
Other local basketball players playing D-I men’s hoops: Arkansas-Pine Bluff junior Isaac Bassey (Capital Christian Academy, from Fallston); Louisiana Tech senior DaQuan Bracey (St. Frances); St. Francis (Pa.) freshman A.J. Burch (Severn); Missouri State senior Keandre Cook (Edmondson); East Carolina freshman Logan Curtis (Calvert Hall); North Carolina A&T sophomore Ed Ferguson (St. Frances); Youngstown State sophomore Tyler Foster (Gilman); Texas A&M freshman Yavuz Gultekin (John Carroll); St. Louis junior Joshua Hightower (Glenelg); High Point sophomore Curtis Holland III (Southern); Delaware State sophomore Montrell Horsey (Joppatowne) and sophomore Ronald Lucas (Lake Clifton); Wagner junior Nigel Jackson (Mount Saint Joseph); St. Bonaventure junior Matt Johnson (New Town); Marist junior Jordan Jones (Poly); St. Joseph’s junior Anthony Longpre (Glenelg); NC Central senior Randy Miller Jr. (Mount Saint Joseph); Bucknell senior Bruce Moore (McDonogh); NJIT freshman Jason Murphy (St. Frances); Bradley redshirt junior Terry Nolan Jr. (Mount Carmel), who’s sitting out this year after transferring from George Washington; Columbia sophomore Ike Nweke (Georgetown Prep, from Woodbine), Long Island junior Eral Penn (St. Frances); Ohio freshman Marvin Price (Patterson); Stanford junior Kodye Pugh (Boys’ Latin), who will miss the season due to injury; New Mexico senior Trevelin Queen (North County); Georgetown sophomore Jaden Robinson (Mount Saint Joseph); Southern sophomore Jayden Saddler (Mt. Zion Academy, from Aberdeen); Howard freshman William Settle (DeMatha, from Baltimore); Hampton sophomore Ben Stanley (Lake Clifton); Portland senior Isaiah White (Centennial); William & Mary junior Jihar Williams (Friends), and Florida Atlantic junior Everett Winchester (Gilman).
Photo Credits: Courtesy of UConn Athletics, Tom Wolf Imaging, Sam Roberts
Issue 258: October 2019
Originally published Oct. 15, 2019