Maury Sophomore Guard Drawing ACC Interest

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Eastern region runner-up Maury (Norfolk, VA) finished with a 22-8 record in 2009/2010, in a season in which head coach Jack Baker captured the 600 victory of his career. A solid group, led by a talented backcourt that includes sophomore guard Jamal Ferguson and junior point guard Sim Frazier, will return next year.

“All of our perimeter players are coming back,” said Baker, who now has 617 career wins. “Sim Frazier, Jamal Ferguson, Kevin Buchanan, Deonte Mercer and John Young are all coming back.

“We played better than expected early on, but you hate to see it end the way it did [with a loss to Petersburg in the Group AAA state quarterfinals]. You want to make that title run.”

In terms of college prospects, Ferguson and Frazier are currently the headliners with Ferguson leading the way. The 6-4 sophomore guard averaged 15 points per game this past season, in what was his second year on the varsity level.

“He played last year as a freshman on the varsity,” Baker said of Ferguson. “This year he really improved his overall game. Jamal still needs to be more aggressive. The kid can really take the ball to the basket, but he relies on his jump-shot too much sometimes. He is an okay shooter, but he’s not great. I really think he is great at taking the ball to the basket, but he still has a ways to go on his overall game. His ball handling is okay. He’s still just a sophomore, so he has time.”

College recruiters have taken notice of Ferguson, who will play for one of Boo Williams’ AAU squads this spring and summer.

“Both [Virginia and Virginia Tech] are involved with Ferguson now,” Baker said. “Coaches from both schools have been down to see him during practice time. They were at a couple of regional games this past year. Both are involved. Obviously, he is just a sophomore. He is a pretty athletic young man. He still has a ways to go, but he is athletic.”

If Ferguson continues on his developmental curve, he likely can expect offers from Virginia, Virginia Tech and Atlantic 10 power Xavier.

“Both Virginia and Virginia Tech are extremely interested in him,” said Baker, who isn’t sure if Ferguson has visited UVa or Tech at this point. “Xavier has been down two or three times to see him play.

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