Four standouts sign with Southwest Bears

Published 5:00 am Wednesday, June 6, 2001

SUMMIT – The Southwest Mississippi Community College basketballBears are looking optimistic about their 2001 class of signees. TheBears, who have 11 players returning off a dreadful 2000-01 season,hope that four incoming freshmen will provide a spark for a stateplayoff berth.

“We’ve got a lot of guys coming back from last year’s team,”said Bear coach Bill Wallace. “We didn’t have a lot of space tosign too many guys this year, so we got three in-staters and oneout-of-stater.”

The one out-of-stater Wallace is referring to is dualfootball/basketball star Byron Robinson (5-10, 160) of St. Thomas,La. Robinson was selected Mr. Football in the state of Louisiana in2000 and made all-state as a basketball selection. Robinson planson playing both on the gridiron and the court at Southwest.

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“Byron’s a very quick and talented point guard,” said Wallace.”He’s a very athletic young man who should get a lot of playingtime in football and basketball.”

At St. Thomas, Robinson averaged 30.3 points, 4.5 assists, 4.2rebounds, and 3.3 steals per game in leading St. Thomas to aplayoff spot.

Another dual player the Bears got was from North Pike in 6-1shooting guard Josh Matthews. Matthews plans on playing on thecourt and on the diamond in spring time for Coach Larry Holmes’Southwest baseball team.

Matthews kept the Jags on the move in 2000 and 2001 withexcellent shooting and quick ball handling. Matthews averaged 17.1points, 5.8 rebounds, and 4.3 assists per contest for the Jags.

Matthews’ teammate and North Pike coach’s son Nic Wilson willalso join the Bear attack, bringing his bulky 6-foot-4, 205-poundframe to the Southwest program.

“Nic (Wilson) averaged close to 15 to 16 points per game lastyear,” added Wallace. “His size should help us get better reboundsand better offensive movement.”

Another Nic the Bears got was Mississippi Class 1A Player of theYear Nic Mark of Class 1A state tournament champion Dexter. Markpaced the champion Bulldogs with 18.4 points, 15.6 rebounds, 4.0blocks, 2.3 steals, and 2.2 assists per game as a 6-5 powerforward.

Overall Coach Wallace thinks that the four new Bears should playa key role in helping the Bears reach their goals during the nexttwo seasons of having a winning season and their ultimate one ofplaying for a state and national championship.