It was a solid weekend for 2014 shooting guard James Demery as he made a big statement leading Team Charlotte to the Bob Gibbons Tournaments of Champions Championship and being named MVP. The 6-foot-4 prospect was coming off an ankle injury the week prior but received a motivational speech from coach Jeff McInnis prior to their arrival at the tournament that Demery took to heart.
James Demery won MVP honors at the Bob Gibbons TOC this weekend
“My coach had told me this was a big weekend and that a lot of college coaches were going to be out.” Demery said. I just stepped up and played with a lot of energy. I had to play through my sprained ankle and I think my mental toughness was a big part.”
The performance earned Demery three new offers to date as Tennessee, Oklahoma State and George Mason all stepped forward on Tuesday afternoon. Those three schools join, Virginia Tech, East Carolina and Charlotte to round out the offer list for the fast rising wing.
The Volunteers received news during the month of April that 6-foot-5 Jordan McRae will return for his senior season in Knoxville. That means they will be looking for his replacement in the 2014 class and that was the message extended to Demery on Tuesday.
“I talked with Coach (Kent) Williams and Coach (Cuonzo) Martin is supposed to call me tomorrow,” Demery said. They were telling me they need a big wing, somebody that has a lot of energy and that can play the game of basketball. I have watched them on television and like what they do. I am planning to go up there sometime during June.”
The surprise of the day came following Demery’s afternoon workout. Returning home, he saw a strange number appear on his cell phone and elected to see who may be checking in. That phone call led to a new offer.
“Oklahoma State got in touch with me and told me they have a scholarship for me,” Demery said. “They said they liked how I had been playing and want me to join their program. I don’t know much about them but they are going to send me more information and going to be keeping in contact with me.”
Along with the six offers he currently holds, Demery has several teams showing strong interest. He rattled off a list of Georgia Tech, DePaul, Florida State, Xavier and Cincinnati as programs that could be offering soon. The Tar Heel state native also mentioned that North Carolina stopped by recently to watch him workout.
With the spring evaluation period out of the way, Demery plans to focus on finishing his junior year strong and then planning a few visits. On Tuesday night he had an idea of a few unofficial visits this summer and a time frame for when a decision could come.
“I am suppose to be taking visits to Georgia Tech, Xavier, DePaul and Tennessee in June,” he said. “I am trying to make a decision after AAU, when the summer is over. I don’t want that much pressure during my school year, I want it to be more relaxing and be able to focus on my senior year and making sure that I finish strong with my academics.”
There are sure to be more offers on the way over the next few weeks and with another evaluation period to go through things are not slowing down for Demery. With that in mind he talked about where things stand heading into May.
“Right now, everything is happening so fast that I am just taking everything in,” he said. “I am going to wait and see what all my options are then I will sit with my coach and family and narrow things down.”
Demery carries an overall grade of 89 by 247Sports.