STM Point Guard Headed to MAAC

NewEnglandRecruitingReport.com | Wednesday, May 13th, 2009

STM Point Guard Headed to MAAC

Point guards were in high demand late in this year’s recruiting period, and one more has just been scooped up as St. Thomas More’s Carl Johnson recently committed to Rider University. 

St. Thomas More, one of the more storied prep school programs in New England, had a fairly pedestrian start to the season by their standards, opening the year with a 9-9 record.  But as the season went on the Chancellors continued to raise the level of their play and wrapped up the regular season by winning 7 of their last 8 to finish with an overall record of 19-14 and once again qualify for the NEPSAC Class A Tournament.

Johnson, originally from Philadelphia, was right in the middle of that late season success as he led STM in scoring in 6 of the team’s final 10 games of the season, including the final three games of the regular season when he topped 20 points in all three contests. 

As Johnson’s level of play continued to rise throughout the season, so did his recruitment.  Even when the season officially ended, coaches were still making the trip to Oakdale, Connecticut to get a second look at the 6’0” guard. 

Ultimately, Johnson opted to commit to Rider University and head coach Tommy Dempsey.  The Broncs program has been on the rise since Dempsey’s ascension to the head coaching position in the 2005-06 season.  Dempsey was named MAAC Coach of the Year in 2006-07 and in the 2007-08 season he took Rider to unprecedented levels of success including a program high 23 wins, the MAAC regular season title, and the school’s first post-season berth in ten years advancing to the inaugural College Basketball Invitational Tournament.  Broncs forward Jason Thompson was the 12th pick of the 2008 NBA Draft by the Sacramento Kings. 

The future is also looking bright for the Rider program as they return Mid-Major All-American Ryan Thompson next year along with Mid-Major Freshman All-American Novar Gadson and MAAC All-Rookie team member Mike Ringgold, who has NEPSAC roots of his own at the Winchendon School.