A.J. Turner is and has been one of the top players in the entire state of Michigan throughout his three seasons at Warren (Mich.) De La Salle Collegiate. Not only did Turner flourish as a junior, leading the Pilots from the point guard position at a long, 6-7, the young man with a little afro and positive attitude is also one of the top students in his class.
And in life, academics trumps athletics, especially at such an important time of development for a teenager.
Despite holding several division one scholarship offers from college basketball programs, Turner and his family have made the decision to reclassify to the class of 2015, allowing him two extra seasons of prep basketball, but also, two extra years learning and growing in the classroom, despite his already glistening academic record.
Turner plans to enroll at New Hampton (N.H.) Prep this fall and provided a statement to GoBlueWolverine below:
“As reported this weekend my family and I have decided that it would be best for me as a student-athlete to transfer and reclassify to New Hampton Prep in New Hampshire,” said Turner. “I will now do two years of school at New Hampton and will graduate in the class of 2015.
“I began school at an early age and have always taken pride in my academics and that will continue going forward. I have been an honor roll student all of my life and I have already passed the ACT. I know the decision I have made is a challenge but I am up to facing that challenge and I feel it will only help me down the road grow as a student-athlete.
“It has been made aware to me and my family that I am extremely young for the class of 2014 so I find great excitement into reclassifying into the proper graduating class for my age. My family and I have decided that New Hampton Prep will give me the opportunity to graduate in my proper class of 2015. It will also give me the opportunity to flourish academically and continue to develop as a basketball player and grow as a young man.
“With that said I would like to thank Coach Hutchins and the New Hampton family for opening their arms and bringing me in. I am excited to start the opportunity that they have provided for me.
“First and foremost I would like to thank De La Salle Collegiate High School for the opportunity given to me since I was a freshman. I would like to thank them for developing me into the young man that I have become.
“I would like to start off by personally thanking Coach Greg Esler for all you have done for me and for giving me the chance to be a Pilot. I will always be thankful and grateful to you and the rest of the coaching staff at De La Salle. All the traits you have taught me on and off the court such as hard work, leadership, and discipline I will take with me to New Hampton and through out the rest of my life.
“Brother Bob has always supported me and has always been in my corner so I will also like to thank him for all he has done.
“A special thanks also to Principle Adams, Mr. Dean, Mr. Stewart, Mr. Albani, Brother Tom, Brother Pat, and the rest of the teachers, staff, counselors, and parents at De La Salle.
“The hardest part of this decision was choosing to leave my teammates, friends, and classmates. All the success that we have shared I will cherish forever. Although I am moving on to a different place I will always be a Pilot at heart and these friendships and memories will last a lifetime.”
Turner is currently playing AAU ball with Dorian’s Pride 17U, recently catching fire in front of GoBlueWolverine’s cameras at Spiece Run N Slam 2013.
To watch video of Turner in action, press play below.