For those who are unfamiliar with the post-grad option for high school athletes, let me give you a brief rundown on what it entails.
It allows athletes to compete for another year after graduating high school without affecting their eligibility to play at the collegiate level. Typically, high level players that choose to go post-grad use that additional year to qualify academically for the NCAA through classes with the post-grad program, as well as develop their game to get ready for the higher competition in college. For players who are already qualified academically, as is Believe Sports Academy’s Dexter Dennis, it allows them to focus solely on their game while competing on the court for another season.
Dennis has taken full advantage of that opportunity, catching the attention of high-major and mid-major schools alike this season. I got my first opportunity to see Dennis play over the weekend and came away pleasantly surprised. He finished with 20 points and a handful of rebounds in game one, and followed that up with a near triple-double in game two as he finished with 13 points, 11 rebounds, and 6 assists.
He’s a tall, strong wing player that could also be moved down to the two guard, but knows hows to bang down low as he spent much of his time prior to arriving at Believe playing the four. Dennis is extremely athletic, as he showed with a couple high-flying dunks through the middle of the lane and is a knock down shooter from behind the arc, hitting two three-pointers in the first half. He also possesses good ball-handling ability, which he showed while attacking the rim and moving the ball up floor in transition. After just one game watching Dennis, it was very apparent that he can add big contributions to a high-major team.
When asked about how playing post-grad basketball has helped his game, Dennis said, “Last year I played high school basketball and it wasn’t as tough as it is now. These coaches really help me work on my weaknesses, and they told me that’s what going prep is for. Since I’m already qualified (academically), I’m just working on my game everyday.”
Dennis planned on joining a junior college team, despite holding multiple division 1 offers last season, until his current head coach Tyson Waterman came in and presented the opportunity to play at Believe.
“My head coach, Coach Tyson, he was hitting me up like crazy and I didn’t know much about prep schools then,” said Dennis when speaking on his decision to come play at Believe Sports Academy, “He showed me he was serious when he was hitting me up, he sent me big long paragraphs (in text messages), so I thought maybe he was serious about my future.”
With an extra year to develop, Dennis has played well enough to earn scholarship offers from IUPUI, Southern, UNC-Asheville, Austin Peay, Eastern Michigan, and Tennessee State to name a few. He’s also garnered interest from Cincinnati, Virginia Tech, Wichita State, Jacksonville State, and Tulane among others. He’s yet to set any visits at this time, but says those will likely come after the conclusion of his post-grad season.
As teams look to find that diamond in the rough before wrapping up their 2018 recruiting classes, they should look no further than Believe Sport’s Academy’s Dexter Dennis. It will be interesting to see how things play out and where Dennis lands, but expect a decision from him sometime in late March or early April.