Ishmail Wainright Montrose Christian Isaiah Briscoe St Benedict's
(Photo by Photo by Jimmy Kelley)
SPRINGFIELD -- St. Benedict's (N.J.) sophomore guard Isaiah Briscoe doesn't always remember every school recruiting him. After hearing the long list of schools lining up, it's difficult to blame him.
According to the guard, he's received offers from Arizona, Syracuse, Florida, Seton Hall, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, DePaul, Cincinatti, Virginia, Baylor and Miami. Kentucky and Ohio State have also shown interest.
And there's a chance that might not be all.
"Sometimes I leave some out," he said with a laugh after what he described as a "tough game" for him individually in a 63-51 win against Montrose Christian.
Briscoe (eight points, four assists) shot 2-12 and finished with more turnovers (three) than assists (one), but was all smiles while talking in a hallway outside the team's locker room at Springfield College.
"We still came out with the win," he said. "Tyler Ennis stepped up, Denzel Taylor stepped up. So I don't care how I play. I'm just happy we won and continue to be undefeated."
Despite Briscoe's inaccurate shooting -- which included a missed dunk, a botched (albeit contested) layup and a finger roll that bounced off the back rim and wouldn't fall -- it was easy to see why so many colleges want him. At an age when many of his peers still haven't filled out, Briscoe already features a thick, strong physique.
"It's just a blessing. I was blessed with a great body and I know how to use it well," he said.
Sunday, he was patient using pick-and-rolls, demonstrated an explosive first step on the fast break and -- especially for a young, dynamic scorer -- showed a nice willingness to find open teammates once he penetrated into the paint.
"Isaiah Briscoe.... man. He's a sophomore. I call him a youngin'. I still call him that," said Baylor signee Ishmail Wainright, who had 14 points and 10 rebounds for Montrose Christian in the loss. "But he doesn't act like one. He's a great player. He can control -- he's physical. That's what I love."
Wainright said he played Briscoe over the summer, so he's well aware of what Briscoe can do.
"He's a great defender. He can knock down an open jumper, pull up off the dribble, beat you off the dribble, finish it. He's a great player," Wainright explained.
The two competitors know each other just a little better after a second-half huddle Sunday. During a free throw, Briscoe got stuck in a circle of Montrose Christian players, and the two teams made a funny moment of it.
"I got caught in the middle of the huddle, but then they just grabbed me and told me to come in the huddle," explained Briscoe. "They didn't say anything. It was just fun and games. They actually got caught around me, and as I tried to get out they held me and told me to stay."
"We wrapped our arms around him," added Wainwright. "I don't think he knew what we were talking about. We called our play and that was it."