Daily Leader All-Area Basketball Most Valuable Player, Boys: ‘Bam’ Thompson

Published 11:30 am Saturday, April 13, 2024

Devonta ‘Bam’ Thompson, Bogue Chitto

Unless you’ve got good equipment, it’s hard to get great pictures of Bogue Chitto junior guard Devonta “Bam” Thompson when he’s on the court.

You need the settings of your camera and lens to be keyed in to catch the constant motion and speed with which Thompson moves.

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During the 2023-2024 season, Thompson led Bogue Chitto to the brink of a state championship, as the Bobcats fell in a close MHSAA 2A title game to Ingomar.

For his outstanding play, Thompson has been named the Daily Leader All-Area Most Valuable Player for boys’ basketball, an honor he also won last year.

A left-handed combo guard, the 5-foot-11 Thompson has the ability to create separation with his quickness and created shots on his own, off the dribble.

When he doesn’t have the ball, he runs off baseline screens like his hair is on fire. His ability to catch the ball on a sprint, turn in the air and get off his shot without checking up is one that few high school guards at the MHSAA 2A level possess.

Thompson averaged 22 points per game to lead the BC offense this season.

 If you think that Thompson’s game is all about scoring, you haven’t watched much Bogue Chitto basketball.

 Thompson is so fast getting up and down the court, it makes his teammates run that much harder to keep up. In high school basketball, if you’ve got a team that is willing to run from baseline to base-line with full effort, then you’ve got a team that will shoot plenty of layups and get lots of open shots on the perimeter.

And that’s what Bogue Chitto does, they’ll rarely walk the ball up the court, as head coach Marc Howard doesn’t have to say “go” or “push it” when Thompson has the ball in his hands in the backcourt, as he looks to throw the ball ahead to Noah Magee or Randy Crisler.

While sharing ball handling responsibilities with his senior teammate Shomari Jenkins, Thompson averaged six assists per game this season.

On defense, he can be a one-man press at times, greeting the opposing point guard at half court with quick feet and quicker hands, thus it’s not surprising to note he averaged nearly six steals this season as well.

Thompson didn’t start the school year off at BC, he was attending school in Texas at that time and then transferred back in time to play this season.

Just before Bogue Chitto hit the court in the state title game, the MAC Mr. Basketball for 2A, a player from Bay Springs High, was recognized on the court.

If you were watching Thompson at that moment as he subtly shook his head, you saw a player that thought he should be out there receiving that trophy as the top player in the 2A ranks.

And I for one agree with him.