Young and inexperienced Southfield A&T boys hoops team building on potential

By: Mike Moore | Southfield Sun | Published December 6, 2017

 Southfield A&T junior Terrell Humes is one of just two players back with the team from last year.

Southfield A&T junior Terrell Humes is one of just two players back with the team from last year.

Photo by Donna Dalziel

SOUTHFIELD — Last year was a reset button, the first year ever for the program as a whole.

This year is, well, the reset button, the first year ever for most of the roster.

“At least last year, we had a lot of guys that had played together before on Southfield (High’s) team,” Southfield A&T boys basketball coach Mike Avery said last week. “This year we don’t have that experience at all.”

In their first year as a program, the Warriors went 11-10 and then graduated almost the entire roster.

When camp started this year and the final names were selected, just two guys from last year — juniors Cameron McEvans and Terrell Humes — were back with the varsity club.

“We’re kind of starting over,” Avery said. “We’re young; we’re inexperienced. But the future here is very bright.”

Avery said he made a conscience effort when selecting the roster, doing so with an understanding of how many guys could be two- or three-year projects.

The current squad has just one senior, three sophomores and nine juniors.

“I’ve got a great chance to work with these guys, to really build this up,” Avery said. “We’re trying to focus on fundamentals, the mental toughness required to play at this level.”

He was asked if he’s seen it just yet.

“No, and that’s fine,” Avery said. “My goal is to start seeing some of it pay off by the midpoint. Give us 10 games, weeks of practices. By then, we should be seeing some of it pay off.”

The Warriors opened the season Dec. 5 with a home date against Southfield Christian, played after press time.

Avery, who was gifted with a veteran team last year, called the prospects of this year and this group “very exciting.”

“The kids are like sponges,” he added. “They soak up so much stuff. It’s cool to see them learn and grow.”

Avery declined to put a win total he hopes to see before the year is out, saying only that he could see the group battling to finish near the .500 mark.

But next year?

“If we do the things we need to, that could be special,” he said. “I could see this group coming back and figuring it out. If we’re able to do that, we could be a team that pushes for a run.”