Jason Henry: Making Up For Lost Time

Jason Henry is the No. 69 player in the Class of 2007, but that number could certainly climb if the West Memphis (Ark.) versatile 6-foot-7 guard continues to progress on the court - and even more importantly, in the classroom.

Jason Henry was torn. Should he go the junior college route or head to prep school for a year to get his academics in order.

The West Memphis (Ark.) native, who is 6-foot-7 and 200 pounds, opted for the latter and he's currently playing for Mack Cleveland at Light of the World Christian Academy in Georgia.

``I think he's a top 10 player, but it depends on how much he wants it," Cleveland said. "There aren't a lot of people who can do what he can do. His skill level is just so high."

Henry's biggest problem is a combination of exposure and academics. Henry didn't play in a shoe camp last July and his grades are still not up to par. He'll take the SAT for the first time next month.

``He's a mystery kid," Cleveland said. "Not a lot of people saw him this summer. I think if he had played with the Atlanta Celtics or the World Wide Renegades, he'd be in the top 10 in the country."

``He's a guy who can handle the ball like a 5-foot-9 kid and passes as well as any point guard," added Cleveland. "The kid is a pro."

Despite the talent, Henry hasn't exactly had to fend off college coaches.

``He's had a rush of schools after him, but it's a matter of how interested he is in them," Cleveland said.

Tennessee has been the most aggressive in pursuit. Louisville is also in the mix, but currently those are the main two schools in the mix.

``Tennessee has shown the most interest, but I always wanted to go to Louisville and they just started to get involved with me." Cleveland said that Henry is entertaining the idea of putting his name in for the NBA Draft after this season because he's in the Class of 2006. However, that's not Henry's preference.

``I want to go to college," Henry said.

Henry put up impressive numbers a year ago at West Memphis High – 27.8 points and 7 assists while spending most of the time with the ball in his hands.

``It doesn't bother me that I haven't gotten a lot of attention, but I know I'm supposed to get up there," Henry said. "I just have to get my academics first."

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