BA guard signs with Co-Lin Wolves

Published 5:00 am Tuesday, May 23, 2000

Sharpshooting guard Chad Smith of Brookhaven Academy is thelatest high school standout to sign a basketball scholarship withthe Copiah-Lincoln Community College Wolves. Smith, 5-foot-11,160-pound playmaker, averaged 19.1 points his senior season.

“I’m excited about getting a chance to continue playing,” saidSmith. “Co-Lin looked good this season. They were ranked prettyhigh in the nation.”

Smith also averaged 4.4 assists, 2.6 rebounds and 2.3 steals pergame as he sparked the Cougars to a 30-9 record. They won the SouthState AA Tournament and were runners-up to Central Private in theState AA Tournament. They reached the quarterfinals of the OverallTournament before losing to Class AAAA Hillcrest Christian, theeventual champion.

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Smith said he was looking forward to playing for Coach DennisSims and the Co-Lin Wolves. Co-Lin won the South DivisionTournament title and advanced to the state tournament.

“It ought to be fun playing for Coach Sims,” said Smith.

Sims said Smith’s versatility will be an asset. “Chad is able toplay two positions, point guard or shooting guard. He can shoot theball well; plus he has the knowledge and skill to handle theball.

“Coming from the Brookhaven Academy program, Chad knows how towork hard,” Sims continued. “It’s like they have been through WorldWar I and World War II. He will be able to handle it.”

Brookhaven Academy head coach Dale Watts is recognized for hisintense practice sessions, flavored with an emphasis on defense. Heis recognized as one of the most successful coaches in Mississippi.Watts was named The Daily Leader’s Coach of the Year forthe 1999-2000 All-Lincoln County Team.

Watts said he believes Smith will do well at Co-Lin. “Chad canbe a contributor to Co-Lin’s program. “He can handle thechallenge.

“Chad is one of the better pure shooters I have ever coached,”Watts pointed out. “He can step out there and hit the basket everyday. He is going into a great program.”

Smith was named to the MPSA’s Class A-AA All-Star Team andThe Daily Leader’s All-Lincoln County Team. He scored 12 pointsin the South victory. As a senior he also sparkled in tennis,playing No. 1 singles for the Cougars this spring.

Other Signees

Guard/forward Pat Bridges of Lawrence County andcenter Quentin Christian of Mendenhall are the latest signees withCo-Lin. Signed earlier by Sims were Tony Thompson and B.J. Black ofBrookhaven, Cedric Hamilton of Loyd Star and Bruce Smith of WestLincoln.

Bridges, 6-foot-2, was named to the DL’sAll-Area Boys Team this year. He averaged 14 points and 7 reboundsfor Coach Bobby Lee’s Cougars, leading them to a runners-up finishin the Division 6-4A Tournament and the semifinals of SouthState.

“Pat is an excellent shooter,” said Sims. “He shotthe ball as well as anyone in our district. He’s a great young man,just like (Co-Lin sophomore) Rod Haynes,” a former Lawrence Countystar.

Christian, a powerful 6-foot-9 center, wasoriginally signed by the University of Southern Miss. He was unableto achieve the required ACT score to be eligible as afreshman.

Christian led Mendenhall to the Class 4A StateTournament title as the Tigers beat Lanier in the finals. He wasnamed to the All-State Team.

“Quentin will give us a strong presence in thepost,” said Sims. “He is a talented player.”

Sims has thee starters returning for the 2000-2001campaign; guards Brandon Dickerson, Barry Whitley and Haynes. Alsoreturning are Edward Moses, Marcus Calcote, Kendrick Porter and RodSmith.