Hickson Makes Move

The talk was that James Hickson would have to sit out until January after transferring into Wheeler High. However, the junior forward is eligible - and wasting little time making an impact.

James Hickson has a list and he was recently able to cross one name off it.

The 6-foot-9, 235-pound junior power forward went head-to-head against the state's highest-rated player, Gani Lawal, in October and went for upwards of 40 points.

``I went into the game knowing he was the number one guy in Georgia," Hickson said. "I felt like I had to prove myself – and I did."

Hickson (Scout.com, No. 21) is a guy who has been difficult to keep track of. He started his high school career at Carver High before transferring to Southwest Atlanta Christian, where he teamed with Georgia Tech-bound point guard Javaris Crittenton a year ago.

However, Hickson made another move prior to the start of this season when he landed at Wheeler High (Ga.), which has won three of the past four state titles.

``He's a good kid who comes from a great family," Wheeler coach Doug Lipscomb said. "He's a team guy. In fact, sometimes I think he's too unselfish."

``He's going to get a lot better here," added Lipscomb. "He's very talented and loves to play the game."

Hickson has gotten off to a good start this season and is eligible after there was speculation that he'd have to sit out until January. Hickson began the season with 28 points and 10 boards and has averaged 15 points in his last two games.

``I'm the type of guy whose going to adapt to my surroundings," Hickson said. "The reason for me leaving Southwest Atlanta Christian and coming here was because of academics and also financial."

Hickson is a strong, athletic power forward who plays hard and has shown the ability to step out and make shots. He went into the summer as virtually an unknown, but came out as one of the most sough-after big man in the junior class after an impressive run with the World Wide Renegades.

``He's a strong rebounder with very good post moves," Lipscomb added. "He's going to be a force on the defensive end as well."

Hickson said that those recruiting him the hardest are Wake Forest, South Carolina, Duke, N.C. State, Virginia and Virginia Tech. North Carolina, Florida, Florida State, Miami, Arizona, Illinois, Alabama and Georgia are also in the mix. According to Hickson, Duke is the only one yet to put forth an offer.

``Everyone's the same right now," Hickson said. "The thing I'm looking for is to get playing time early."

Scout Hoops Top Stories