After beginning his high school career in his small hometown of Pinetown, North Carolina, Bam made the decision to move to bigger and better competition at High Point Christian for his final year of high school. He had some AAU teammates joining him, but he was still nervous to make the move. Halfway through his Senior season, it turned out to be a great decision.
Bam told the Greensboro News & Record that it was tough leaving his Mom at first, but it was a necessary step in order to be ready for the next level. His new coach, Brandon Clifford, knew he was getting a great player, but Bam has exceeded expectations.
“Bam is more than what I expected,” the coach said. “Whenever you get a new player you don’t really know how they are personality-wise. You kind of get an outer shell, but you don’t really know until you’re around them every day. Bam is just a phenomenal kid, a great teammate. He’s been a joy to coach.”
The move to a bigger and better school has caused his numbers to slightly dip — from 32 points, 20 boards and 4.5 blocks last year to 20.3 points and 12.4 rebounds a game this year — but the increased competition has made him a more well-rounded basketball player. Bam is much more than a big man who dunks hard.
“His upside with the ball in his hands away from the basket is a lot higher than I thought,” Clifford said. “I knew what type of beast he was around the basket, a rebounder with a motor, but he can guard all five positions. We were playing (Duke signee small forward) Jayson Tatum (and St. Louis Chaminade High) down in Florida and he was the guy we had to lean on because Jalen Seegars was hurt, and he had some huge stops down the stretch that led to us winning that game.”
Bam’s motor is ensuring that he’s constantly improving before he arrives at Kentucky. He knows what’s at stake.
“I have to bring my ‘A’ game every game and show everybody that this is my team and I’m here to lead them to the promised land.”
Just one highlight from Bam’s 17 point, 19 rebound performance last night.
Read more on what his teammates and other coaches had to say about Bam: Greensboro New & Record