In the past, Keala King has always been able to show glimpses of what he could do. However, the six-foot-four guard from Compton (CA) Dominguez was always playing with Texas bound Jordan Hamilton and Hamilton seemed to get the lion's share of touches and shots.
Now, after a junior year out of Hamilton's shadow, the slender lefty is taking his game to new and previously unseen levels.
"I've been trying to be more of a leader," said King. "I'm trying to be more involved with the team and get players open and stuff. I want to be the guy people go to."
A clever ball handler who has excellent body control on zig zagging forays into the lane, the lefty King is a capable of finishing plays with either hand around the rim. He's got a bit of a streaky jumper, but remains confident in his shot. However, it's another area of his game that has emerged as a real strength.
"Passing is one of my strengths," said King. "I don't really look to shoot. If somebody is open I'm going to look to pass to them instead of take a bad shot."
Viewed by some as a shooting guard and by others as a tall and lanky guard with the potential to play the two, King sees himself as a combination of both. That's how plenty of schools have been approaching him too.
"I really see myself as a combo guard on the next level. That's how schools have been recruiting me," said King of the approach employed by schools. "I'm hearing from Oregon State, Stanford, USC, Arizona, Connecticut, and Kentucky. It's been all good on that front."
Among that group, Stanford has been as active as NCAA rules allow them to be.
"Their approach is that I get a phone call every once in while because of NCAA rules," said King of Stanford. "They are asking me if I'm going to go to their camp and what I'm looking for in a college."
So far, both Stanford's coaching staff and the school itself have left an early impression on King.
"They are good people to me," King told The Bootleg. "I want to major in business administration and they say that have one of the best programs for that. That's another reason why I would look at going to Stanford."
In no rush to pick a school, King would like to play things out this summer to see what type of attention he attracts. A 3.8 student in the classroom, he'll take the SAT in the Fall and start looking to set up his visits. "At the end of summer, I'll look to narrow things down," said King. "I'm looking for a place where I can maybe go in and start or at least have a chance to play a lot early. I also want to be comfortable with the people there."