Joey Brooks, a member of the Class of 2009, closed the summer scene strong and programs took note. Had the period lasted another week or two, the 6-foot-5 Houston (Tex.) Strake Jesuit prospect may have made another leap.
As it turns out, enough teams saw him to make the combo wing a priority heading into his junior season. An aggressive Brooks took trips in the fall and courted Wake Forest, Oklahoma State and Marquette before picking the Notre Dame Fighting Irish this week.
"Joey's special, he's very special," Strake Jesuit head coach Wayne Jones said. "With his commitment to Notre Dame they got a great kid and a great basketball player. He took an unofficial up to Notre Dame last weekend and fell in love with it. He loves Mike Brey and the staff. They didn't pressure him at all and the academics are what he's looking for and Joey's a huge Catholic."
Brooks, a 2nd team all-district performer as a sophomore, ran with the T-MAC All-Stars. By the way, he plays in a big time district for high school. Also on the second team as a sophomore was Erik Williams and he committed to Marquette two weeks ago.
"We play in one of the best basketball conferences in the entire state of Texas," Jones said. "He was third or fourth in scoring and rebounds. It said a tremendous amount of what the coaches in the district said about him as a sophomore."
As a sophomore Brooks averaged 17 points for Jones and played a diverse role at one of the country's finest academic high schools. Collegiately he could find himself playing a multitude of positions.
"Mike Brey and myself think it the same way. We don't teach guys to play a position; we teach them to play basketball. That's Notre Dame's philosophy. Joey's a versatile kid. He can shoot it and handle it. He can post smaller guards and his versatility is the biggest attribute that he has. Joey's a basketball player."