Bell has breakout performance

Big guys who can run and are big time athletes always are in demand for college coaches, and Dave Bell might just be emerging into a national recruit.

Not much was known about Garfield Heights (OH) center Dave Bell before this weekend. Then Bell took over at the Flyin to the Hoop event, and not only has he added an offer, but Bell has picked up a ton of big time interest. For the 6-foot-9 and 215 pound center the sky is now the limit.

Garfield Heights head coach Sonny Johnson played his college ball at Ohio University and had two other brothers play college basketball as well. Beyond that he has coached several other college players, but none have had the potential of Bell.

"The thing is he is just raw," said Johnson of Bell. "Dave played a little bit on a bad AAU team after his ninth grade year, and then he broke his foot last season and didn't get to really play. He is just fresh and he is working every day with my brother and I on drills after practice. He's getting some big looks right now."

The 2014 prospect is now healthy and making a major impact on the floor for the Bulldogs.

"Dave has been a major presence in the paint," said Johnson. "He is averaging about five blocks per game right now. He is able to alter shots and he runs the floor like a deer. When you have a kid who can run the floor like that, stay active, and be a help defender that is a plus."

Recruiting wise Bell had an offer from St. Joseph's coming into the weekend, but now things are exploding.

"Lately Ohio State has called, Iowa, Arizona, West Virginia, Pittsburgh was up (Wednesday), DePaul, Xavier, Dayton, everybody is getting involved with him," said Johnson.

He continued, "St. Joe's has offered and DePaul offered him as well. Also he had a lot of mid-majors at first, and now a lot of high-majors are coming in."

Things are just at the beginning stages for Bell who will need to repeat his performance the rest of the season, but Johnson feels the sky is the limit for his junior center.

"I think he can be as good as he wants to be," said Johnson. "Dave just turned 17. He has an opportunity to be special with his athletic ability, size, and running ability, and he isn't going to be as special as he can be until he gets to college."

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