Buying a legacy: Multiple Move ins
April 24, 2012By Truly Blessed of Phi slamma jamma
Longtime high school reporter Todd Holcomb thinks these five basketball teams helped frame the transfer timeline.
The Wildcats were not the first team to win a state basketball title with a big-name transfer, but their 2003 team redefined what it meant to rebuild. The 2002 team won Class AAAAA, but graduated all five starters. Enter future NBA forward Jermario Davidson from Stone Mountain and all-state point guard Sharaud Curry from East Hall, and Wheeler was back on top, winning the second of four titles in the decade. Future move-ins, including J.J. Hickson, DeQuan Jones and Richard Howell, made Wheeler a lightning rod in the transfer controversy.
2004 South Gwinnett
Many believe the era of transfers is fueled by the players’ AAU summer teams, which is where key friendships are formed. The Georgia Stars were one of the nation’s finest in the first decade of the 2000s, so Mike Mercer transferred to join AAU teammate Louis Williams at South Gwinnett and the two helped win that school’s first state title. Both committed to Georgia, but Williams went to the NBA out of high school.
Norcross had won the 2006 AAAAA title with future NBA player Jodie Meeks, who had come from Roswell. But by the 2007 season, with Meeks graduated, Norcross achieved a transfer milestone when all five starters were transfers and successfully defended the state title. Two of them — Al-Farouq Aminu and Gani Lawal — played in the NBA.
2010 Norcross (girls)
Norcross had never won a state title in girls basketball, but the arrival of coach Angie Hembree — who had won five state titles at Collins Hill, two with Maya Moore — made this school an attractive destination for two prized ninth-graders, Diamond DeShields and Kaela Davis. They had led their AAU team to a national championship and decided to play in high school together. Norcross won a state title with them. Davis then transferred to Buford to join Andraya Carter.
Milton played in its fourth consecutive Class AAAAA final and won its second state championship this season. The list of transfers that have fueled coach David Boyd’s dynasty included Shaquille Johnson (Auburn), Charles Mann (Georgia), Shannon Scott (Ohio State), Dai-Jon Parker (Vanderbilt) and Jordan Loyd (Furman).