Prep Profile St. Thomas More
A quick look down the St. Thomas More roster reveals five different players who are already committed to division I schools and a group of names that are otherwise unfamiliar to most fans in this area.
Cane Broome (Sacred Heart), Josh Williams (Rider), Calvin Crawford (Manhattan), Eric Paschall (Fordham), and Mike Wells (Albany) have already solidified their division I futures. The commitments are similar not just because of their early timing, but because all five have chosen levels where they can go in and make an immediate impact.
Paschall is the most naturally talented of the group and a sheer steel for Fordham. He’s a true senior, and a young one at that, who has all the tools and talent to play at the highest levels of college basketball, but instead chose to stay close to home where he’ll have a chance to eventually develop into a top talent in the Atlantic 10.
Crawford was a similarly young senior last year at Middletown (NY), but widely pursued by a number of division I schools once he opted to do a post-graduate year. He’s improved at a rapid rate in the last year as he continues to evolve into a long and athletic forward with inside-out potential.
Williams is a six-foot-six wing who will literally be playing his college basketball within miles of his New Jersey home. Similar to Crawford, he’s a late bloomer with loads of potential in his long frame.
Then there’s Broome, the local Connecticut product who will be staying in state and joining a Sacred Heart program where he’ll be capable of making an immediate impact with both his scoring and playmaking.
Finally, Wells is a bulldog style lead guard who has both a quick first step and deep shooting range alike, along with the quickness and powerful core to harass opposing ball-handlers on the defensive end.
While the rest of the names on the roster aren’t immediately familiar to college coaches, that has begun to change pretty quickly in recent weeks.
Francis Kiapway and Yuta Watanabe are two post-graduates who stay consistent with a strong international theme we’ve seen thus far in Class AAA. Kiapway is a six-foot-two guard from Canada who could end up making a major impact for this year’s squad much like Duane Notice did a year ago. Watanabe is a six-foot-six forward who comes to STM by way of Japan and has shown every indication of being the real deal thus far.
England’s Ajou Deng returns for his second season, after having reclassified back to 2015. The versatile big man looks prepared to take on a bigger role with a year of experience under his belt and size that is unmatched on the rest of the roster.
The roster also features a group of prospects who appear to have been overlooked during their high school careers. Travis Tomer is a six-foot-five wing player who combines both skill and toughness and turned down division II offers in order to pursue his division I aspirations.
Scott Toresco and Thomas Whipple are two other guys who could very well play their way onto the scholarship level this year. Toresco is a six-foot-seven big man who will provide a true back-to-the-basket presence while Whipple is a local product who is in his second tour at STM after spending the last couple of year starring for Ledyard High School.
Six-foot-six perimeter forward Alex Doche provides a three-point specialist who can stretch opposing defenses far beyond the three-point line while Taverick Roberson provides additional depth in the post.
Put it all together and this is a group with incredible depth – perhaps as many as twelve scholarship level players. That’s a recipe that head coach Jere Quinn should thrive with as he’s known to utilize one of the longest benches in class AAA and make use of every asset at his disposal.
The bottom line is that what this team may lack in sheer star power, they make up for in depth and versatility, and that could very well be enough for them to be in contention come next March.