Coach Lesure Likes What He Sees in Bernard Rimmer

After talking to Bridgton Academy head basketball coach Whit Lesure, you come away with the impression that Mississippi State basketball is not only getting a solid player, but an even better person in Bernard Rimmer (F, 6-7, 200), a Grenada, Mississippi resident who is playing prep school basketball at BA.

Bernard Rimmer Profile:

"Bernard has been a terrific guy in this community and a credit to his family," said Lesure. "Everything good you can possibly say about him I can say."

He also mentioned that Bernard, who is attending BA to get his academics in order, has more than taken care of business in the classroom.

"He has done exceptional," said Lesure. "He had a 3.6 gpa his first semester. That speaks to his character more than anything."

He even sees Bernard continuing that academic excellence at State.

"He is going to be a B student at Mississippi State," said Lesure. "I don't have a doubt about that at all. I can't see him doing less than B- work because he is so conscientious."

Currently averaging about 12 points, 7 rebounds and 25 to 28 minutes per game, what does he think about Bernard the player?

"He can do a lot of different things," said Lesure. "Obviously, what strikes everybody when they first see Bernard is he is a very athletic guy who has a long body. He is clearly a good athlete or Mississippi State wouldn't be involved. For us, he has guarded wing players and post players. He has played post people and used his quickness against them. Because so many teams have their bigger people step away from the basket and shoot, Bernard has become effective guarding perimeter type people, too. I don't think he can currently guard two-guards or the best three men around, but he is getting better and is probably athletic enough to be able to do it some in the future."

Obviously, he has the makings of a good defender, but what about his offense?

"I had heard him described as an athlete many times and normally that translates into a guy who can only run down the floor and dunk or rebound," said Lesure. "But Bernard is an unselfish kid who can pass the ball. He can shoot the ball better than anybody had told me. He can even shoot a three-point shot pretty effectively. We don't have him do that a lot, but early in the season he did it well enough that I was almost letting him shoot it too much. But that took him away from the basket. So, he's had to learn to choose his spots on the perimeter.

"Another thing he does really well is move without the ball. When we run a movement type offense, he makes nice cuts and puts himself into good spots on the floor."

The makings of a good defender, a good passer, a good outside shooter and a player who moves well without the ball, what does he lack? Lesure pointed out that Bernard's physical maturity is something that he needs to continue to work on.

"I think he has a lot of physical maturing to do," said Lesure. "I don't think he is ready to kick someone's rear end in the SEC right now. I think his maturity level is such that the learning curve will be a good one. Hopefully, part of it will be between the time our season ends in March and when Mississippi State gets him."

What does he expect from Bernard Rimmer once he is at Mississippi State and has some experience under his belt?

"I know that Bernard Rimmer is going to be good before it's all over because of the type athlete he is and the type of person he is," said Lesure, who mentioned that schools from conferences such as the Big East, ACC and C-USA had expressed an interest in Bernard prior to finding out that he was firmly committed to Mississippi State. "He is an intelligent kid, a good kid. You add intelligence and coachability to everything else that I just mentioned and you have a guy with a good future."

Gene Swindoll is the publisher of Dawgs' Bite, Powered by, the source for Mississippi State sports on the sports network. You can contact him by emailing

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