Saginaw has seen it's share of top-flight talent on both the hardwood and the gridiron over the past few years, and this season is no different. Most around the state have already heard the names Tory Jackson (JR. PG Saginaw Buena Vista) and Darquavis Tucker (SO. WG Saginaw Arthur Hill), but a newcomer to the seen is now garnering the same level of attention. Larry Wright (6-2.5, 170 lbs. JR.) transferred to Saginaw High prior to the start of the school year, and in a short time the young man has already made a name for himself. Saginaw headman Lou Dawkins, who took over for former coaching great Marshall Thomas, knew right away that he had something special the first time he saw Wright on the basketball court.
"He's originally from Saginaw, but he moved away when he was in the fourth or fifth grade," Dawkins said. "He happened to come back this past August. Word has just gotten out about him. No one really knew about Larry, but I knew how it would after I worked him out the first day. I had an open gym that following week and invited some colleges. After that, word of mouth has been spreading like the plague. Coach Ramsey came down when Larry, Tory Jackson, Zach Gibson and a few kids from Detroit were in the gym. There was some nice nice talent there. After watching Larry I think he'll probably be one of the favorites for Mr. Basketball his senior year."
When describing his game, Larry could only muster one word…"smooth." That's an understatement according to Coach Dawkins. The young man's versatility will allow him to be used at both backcourt positions. "He's a combo guard," Coach Dawkins said. "He reminds me of guy that used to play for the Indiana Hoosiers named Jay Edwards. He has an in-between jumpshot, which is something that's missing from today's basketball players. He can also shoot it from 25 feet with ease. He's very very athletic and explosive. He has a 30-35 inch vertical. He can take you off the dribble or stop and pop. He can basically do it all. He's a great rebounder. He can pass. He can just do a lot, so I've had a number of colleges up here to see him. Kentucky, Michigan, Michigan State, Missouri, Temple, Ball State, Ohio State…Arizona has called about him as have UCLA and Oregon."
With schools traveling to Saginaw in mass to see his new pupil, Coach Dawkins has no doubts about where Larry ranks in relation to Jackson and Tucker. "I would put him right up there," Dawkins said. "As a matter of fact, Kentucky came to see all three of them play a couple of days before the dead period a couple of weeks ago. They love all three of them. "
Coach Dawkins hasn't hesitated to put Wright in head to head match-ups with the best talent he could find. Wright has already matched up with Jackson and more than held his own. " I played against Tory a couple of times," Wright said. "It was pretty even. It was about 50/50."
Although college is a few years down the line, Wright has already given thought to what position he'd like to play at the next level. "Last year I played at Independence High School in Louisiana," Wright said. "We played fairly well. We lost to the state champs by one point in overtime. I averaged 18 points, 7 rebounds, and 3 assists. I'll be playing the one and sometimes the two here, but when I get to college I plan on being a point guard."
With no childhood allegiance to any school, Larry is wide open. "I wasn't a fan of any particular school growing up," Wright said. "I'll be going to all the games I can." Expect Michigan to be one of his destinations this winter as he looks to be emerging as a significant target. Furthermore, with his intentions to play for the Michigan Mustangs next spring made clear, look for current commitment K'len Morris to put in a good word for the Wolverines.
Despite the onslaught of attention, Coach Dawkins is certain that Wright will
stay grounded. "Larry is a great kid," Dawkins said. "He's humble.
The kids have heard about him now, but the majority of them don't even know
who he is because he is not flamboyant. He just walks down the hall like he's
a normal kid, which is different from a lot of the other kids over the years."
That humbleness is evident to us when speaking with the young man. Look for
much more on him from GBW throughout the basketball season.