Thursday, August 25, 2016

Burress To Finish What His Mother Started At S4G

Aaron Burress speaks and conducts himself with a noticeable maturity. He possesses a mindset and focus that's rather rare for an 18-year-old.

Burress views life and life's inevitable challenges with a deeper perspective than most.

The death of Burress' mother, the most traumatic experience of his young life, played a tremendous role in shaping this all-business mindset.

A 6-foot-5, 215-pound double double threat on the court, Burress values the constant emphasis his mother placed on both hard work and holding himself to a high standard.

And so, with his mother's memory constantly circulating through his mind, Burress will fight to attain a Division-1 scholarship during his post-grad year at Shooting 4 Greatness Academy.

His goal ultimately is to play four years and eventually pursue his trade on the professional level. Out of his commitment to keeping his mother's lasting legacy intact, this is the lofty expectation Burress will hold himself to.

"In my mother's memory, I'm trying to help as many people as I can," said Burress, a versatile threat and late bloomer on the NCAA recruiting market.

"I'm trying to work as hard as I can in every aspect in my post graduate season. With school I'm trying to get mainly all As and Bs, that's a major focus for me. I got all As and Bs this past year, so I want to continue that throughout college."

Burress will also dedicate his performance on the court to his mother, who helped push his evolution as a player.

"I'm trying to fulfill both of our dreams," he said.

Shooting 4 Greatness head coach Kyle Solomon has molded a number of talented and versatile guards in his years. Never, however, has Solomon had a kid of Burress' intellect and maturity walk through the door.

"You just don't see a kid like this very often in prep school because he's already qualified and he's a kid who took a chock full of honor courses," Solomon said of Burress.

"On the court, he's a man-child. He's got the body of a tight end and he's a grown man out there. He's got the ability to play anywhere from 1-3. He's a high flyer. He's also got the handle and outside shooting ability, so I'm really targeting him to get 16-17 points, eight rebounds, and about six assists per game. He's capable of that, in my eyes."

Consider Burress your prototype safe bet recruit. Playing for a Wakefield program which managed a meager five wins last year, the ramped up competition at S4G and a hyper competitive national schedule influenced Burress' decision to go the prep route.

"Aaron's father has done a great job filling in with the mother's love," said Solomon, who rattled off ECU, Western Carolina, Delaware State, Jackson State and Burress' father's alma mater, Greensboro A & T, as potential NCAA destinations.

Solomon, an innovative trainer/coach known for taking borderline Division-1 recruits and turning them into mid-majors, believes Burress' best playing days are very much in front of him.

"He's Barack Obama off the court and an absolute warrior on it," Solomon deadpanned.

"He's trying to make a statement this year and prove to the city of Wake County that he could play the guard position. The unfortunate passing of his mother, he's using that as a battery. It has made him more hungry to pursue his dream and play for a scholarship and eventually play off it. Not only is he going to be successful on the court, but his demeanor and the manner in which he carries himself shows he's going to be successful off it as well."