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January 22, 2013

Life at Prep with Warren Sledge...Part 3

Over the last decade, prep school basketball has become an option that some high school players have chosen to venture through after their four years of eligibility has expired in their state athletic association. Prep school gives the player another year of growth on and off the court before they start the clock on their college careers.

Throughout this season, TexasHoops.com will be following the prep season of Warren Sledge at Future College Prep in Harbor City, Cal. Sledge played his high school basketball at Keller Central High School where his father, Gerald, was the assistant coach and now the current head coach.

Q&A with TexasHoops.com

TexasHoops
Looks like a very busy schedule during the Fall semester. How is the body holding up with the more grueling schedule than during high school?

WARREN
My body requires a lot more attention. I stretch and ice everyday after practices and games to keep it from being too sore. I rollout all the muscles in my legs and drink a lot of water to prevent cramps. As long as I continue to do that, my body will be fine.

TexasHoops
The Spring semester has trips to AZ (for 5 games), VA (5 games) and NV (3 games). During those trips you will play top programs like Oak Hill and Findlay Prep. What are you looking forward to on those trips? What challenges do you expect with the travel and level of competition?

WARREN
On the trips to Virginia and Las Vegas, I am mostly looking forward to the competition and the recruitment that will come out of these trips if I play well enough. The challenges I expect to face are obviously playing against the top teams in the country but also we know the officiating will more than like favor Findlay and Oak Hill so that means we have to play that much better if we want to have a chance.


TexasHoops
As a father you are used to having your son home for the Christmas break, did Warren get to return home for a while during the Christmas break?

Coach Sledge
Yes, he played on December 22nd and flew in on the 23rd. He returned to Los Angeles on January 2nd to report to school on the 3rd.

TexasHoops
What areas of his game have you seen improve over the first semester at FCP?

Coach Sledge
Warren's biggest issue is that he sees the game like a coach too much and understands the value of a possession. This led to him not being as aggressive as a player of his caliber should be. Since being in prep school he has become more aggressive--turned his motor up another notch. The biggest improvement has been in his leadership of his team as the point guard providing teammates with direction, encouragement, motivation, and most important accountability. These changes have been most reflective in the team's record and his numbers. FCP's national team currently has 34 plus wins with Warren at the helm as the point guard and Warren's personal numbers have increased in areas of assist, steals and rebounding.

TexasHoops
What areas of life have you seen him mature in and grow up in being away from home for a semester at prep?

Coach Sledge
Warren has always been very self-sufficient and responsible but like any other kid you have to remind them of certain things. There wasn't a huge need for maturity but I can say that he did a better job a remembering to do things we discussed over the phone that he needed to take care of when he came home.

TexasHoops
How is recruiting handled differently at the prep school level than at the traditional high school setting?

WARREN
Recruiting at prep has much more coaches calling and walking in and out of the gym than in high school. My recruiting has picked up a little bit.

Coach Sledge
From the parent aspect of the recruiting process the colleges communicate with the players and the coach directly. Mail is delivered to the prep school and not the home address. I have received some calls about Warren but that is mainly because they were interested last year or the fact that I am in the profession and have established a report with the school or coach that is calling.

TexasHoops
Has recruiting begun to pick up?

WARREN
I am getting interest from George Mason, Miami(Ohio) and Coastal Carolina.

Coach Sledge
Coach Bean receives calls regularly about Warren. Coastal Carolina, Miami of Ohio, and George Mason have all been out to watch Warren in California either practice or play and stated that they plan on coming out to watch him play in February when they travel to Virginia to play Oak Hill, Southern Tech Prep, Fishburne Military School, Massenutten Military Academy, and Hargrave Military Academy. These schools have all put out some great players and are very competitive year in and year out.

On my end I have talk to Missouri State, University of Nebraska at Omaha, and the Citadel in reference to Warren. University of Nebraska at Omaha came down last year and saw him play at an open gym, the Citadel was recruiting him last year but went with a JUCO kid, and Missouri State was a totally new interest.

TexasHoops
What are you looking for in a school and basketball situation for the future?

WARREN
For the school and basketball scenario, I just want to go somewhere that I will be able to go and play right away and also like the environment and my peers as a whole.

Coach Sledge
Looking for my son to continue his education and play ball at the college level. Whatever comes out of this situation I will be grateful and pray that we make the best decision on what is available.


On the Court:

In December Warren put together several games with double digit assists, 3 plus steals, and 5 plus rebounds. His top game was against a very good Middlebrooks Way Academy where he had 14 assist and 1 turnover, 6 points, 5 rebounds, and 4 steals.

Life at Prep -- Part 2

Life at Prep -- Part 1


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