Roberts signs pact with C-L Wolves

Published 5:00 am Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Blaine Roberts said he is looking forward to shooting thebasketball in Copiah-Lincoln Community College’s Mullen Gymnasium.The Brookhaven Academy senior signed a basketball scholarshipMonday with the Co-Lin Wolfpack.

“I’m happy and I’m excited,” answered Roberts, when asked abouthis scholarship opportunity. He said he’s considering a career inthe medical field.

As a senior, the 6-foot-3, 155-pound Roberts averaged 11.9points and 4.1 rebounds per game for Coach Dale Watts, helping theCougars to a 30-10 record and a 5th straight Class AA statetournament championship. He was selected Most Valuable Player andMr. Basketball on The DAILY LEADER’S 2009 All-Lincoln County BoysBasketball Team.

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Roberts moved from shooting guard to being mainly a point guardand ball-handler his senior campaign. His points per game averageplummeted but the Cougars added another state championship bannerto John R. Gray Gymnasium in the process.

Described as “gym rat” by Coach Watts, Roberts works overtime atimproving his basketball skills. His grandfather, Danny Roberts,used to borrow the gymnasium’s keys from Watts so his grandsoncould spent extra time shooting the basketball in the gym.

“We would come up here and shoot, a lot of times on Saturdaysbefore games,” said the soft-spoken Roberts. His parents are DavidRoberts and Melissa Burns, both Bogue Chitto graduates.

Roberts also excels in track where he competes in the triplejump and high jump for the Cougars. He has cleared 6-foot in thehigh jump and posted a distance of 38 feet in the triple jump.

In the classroom, Roberts said his favorite subject is math. Hehas scored a 30 on the ACT.

“Blaine has been a great person to work with,” said Watts. “Hehas set some high standards for himself. He’s very coachable.”

Roberts competed in the AA state basketball playoffs in spite ofa broken bone in his left hand. He had sustained the injury in thefinal game of the regular season.

“Blaine showed a lot of courage to continue playing despite thatbroken hand,” said Watts. “He’s very dedicated andcompetitive.”

Asked about his favorite NBA team, Roberts said he likes theBoston Celtics. He comes from a family of Ole Miss fans so heenjoys watching the Rebels play.

Roberts said Watts helped him improve his basketball knowledgeand skills. “Coach Watts really taught me a lot.”

Co-Lin coach Dennis Sims said he was looking forward to havingRoberts on the squad. He loses 4 starters to graduation off a statetournament runner-up team that finished 15-14. Returning is 6-8post Dwayne Brown.

“Blaine is a guard with good height,” said Sims. “He is comingfrom a very disciplined program where a lot is demanded of theplayers.

“Coach Watts works his players extremely hard so he knows aboutpracticing to improve,” Sims said. “He’s a good student, too.”

Sims said Co-Lin sophomore All-American guard Trent Hutchin hassigned with Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond.

Recently signing with Co-Lin were Anthony Evans, a 5-11, guard,and Glenn Ford, a 5-9 guard from Greenville-Weston; Josh Hollins ,a 6-5 forward from Crystal Springs; Marcus Hooten, a 6-2 guard;Jordan Smith, a 6-5 forward, and DeMorris Summers, a 6 -2 guard,all from Provine; Earl Warren, a 6-4 forward from Dutchtown, La.;and Maurice Williams, a 6-3 guard from Vicksburg.