2003-04 DODDS-Europe Division I boys basketball preview
December 3, 2003
The drive for five is alive.
The Heidelberg boys, who last February won a fourth straight European crown, seem loaded enough to make it five in a row.
Here’s how they and their Division I rivals stack up for the upcoming season.
Brad Shahan’s talent-rich Lions, 13-2 last season, got richer with the import of 6-5 junior post player Jamal John, who averaged 25.6 points, 14.4 rebounds and 3.6 blocked shots per game as a sophomore at Giessen.
John, a second-team All-Europe pick, will team with Heidelberg’s returning All-Europe (but unrelated) Williams duo — 6-3 senior forward Jonathan Williams (14 points, 8.3 rebounds per game), a first-teamer, and 5-8 guard James Williams (8.8 points, 2.5 assists, 2.8 steals per game), a second-team All-Europe pick.
The Lions also suit up experienced returnees Phillip McHugh, T.J. Trice, Lewis Allen and sophomore Tyreke Wesley.
“If we can keep our grades up and injuries down,” Shahan said, “we will be very tough.”
Jim Campbell returns to coach the Warriors (10-5 last season) after a one-year hiatus. Unfortunately for him, he finds the cupboard a little bare, with just two varsity players returning.
Although Heath Belliveau and Michael Walker haven’t started before, Campbell will build around them with JV-promotees Robert Reynolds and Robert Edwards.
Len Tarnowski’s squad will attempt to improve on last year’s third-place finish by converting all-conference football players Brennan Relaford and Brian Stewart, along with European champion quarterback Matt Irwin.
The trio will join his nucleus of returnees Jose Montero, Arlandis Guest and Jonathan Pelka. Newcomers Dondre Godlock, James Carlisle, Lee King, Allen Weaver and Raymond Wicks also join the Royals’ mix.
New coach Sam Ochinang expects to have the Wolves running behind new point guard Ivan Corpening and returnee Justin Gennings, who played three positions for last season’s squad, which went 6-6 in the regular season.
Getting the ball and making the outlet pass for the break, among other things, will be another newcomer, 6-3, 270-pound senior center-guard-forward Andrew Aarons, dubbed “The Caribbean Monster.”
Kaiserslautern Red Raiders
Coach Clinton Robinson will count on his senior returnees — John and Jermie Hunt, Jose De Jesus and David Jones — to provide the leadership necessary to improve on last season’s 4-11 finish.
Two more returnees, Julian Smalls and Aaron Ellis, will be bolstered by newcomers Monty Robinson, Brian Hill and Jamaal Anene.
Post star John Rogers (21.2 points, 10.3 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 1.5 steals per game), a second-team All-Europe pick last season, headlines a quintet of returnees to John Gilmore’s Lancers, 3-8 in league play last season. The other four — 6-3 Justin King, 5-7 James Judge, 6-3 Nate Kupko and 6-2 Spencer Le Clair, form a top five familiar with each other and the system.
Int. School of Brussels Raiders
Departures have gutted Willie Foreman’s Raiders, who went 5-7 in league play last season.
No other information was provided.