Walking The Line

Andre Walker turned down scholarship offers from a pair of Top 25 caliber teams. Some would consider the Illinois native crazy, but he's banking on the fact that a post-grad year at Brewster Academy (N.H.) will help vault him one step higher.

Some people would question Andre Walker's sanity after he spurned scholarship offers from Nevada and Southern Illinois.

Walker is a 3.0 student who already scored a 27 on the ACT, so it's hard to question his intelligence.

But Walker wants more.

``I felt I could go bigger," Walker said. "I felt I would get stronger and get better coming to Brewster Academy."

The versatile 6-foot-7, 205-pound Illinois native, who was a teammate of Kansas forward Julian Wright's at Homewood-Flossmoor (Ill.), opted for a post-grad year at Brewster Academy (N.H.) – where he is still recovering from a foot injury that sidelines him for nearly the entire spring and summer.

``It happened in May," Walker said. "I was going up for a rebound and I didn't even know I messed it up."

Walker played with the CAPS All-Stars at the Kingwood Classic, but didn't end up having surgery until July.

Walker averaged 16 points, 8 boards, 5 assists and a pair of blocks last season after Wright departed for Lawrence, Kan. Brewster coach Jason Smith compares him to another one of his former players – Loyola (Ill.) do-it-all forward Blake Schilb, who has gone from anonymity to someone who could be a first-round pick in next year's NBA Draft next year.

``He's so skilled and can play multiple positions," Smith said. "He does everything well, but nothing spectacular. He rebounds, is a terrific passer and can make shots."

``I can play anywhere from the one to the four," Walker added. "The biggest thing I need to work on his attacking the basket and getting to the rim more."

Walker describes himself as a "point forward" and while he still hasn't received the clearance from medical personnel to participate in pickup games, he's started to receive plenty of interest just by his shooting ability in the gym.

In fact, Walker will visit Vanderbilt on Oct. 20 and he's also being pursued by Colorado, Seton Hall, St. Louis, La Salle and SMU.

``I just want to improve and get exposure," Walker said. "My ultimate goal is to go to the NBA and I know I need to work hard."

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