UW offer shocks Kingma

Tell Brett Kingma he's a volume shooter, he'll just shake his head. Tell the 6-foot-1, 160-pound guard from Jackson High School in Mill Creek, Wash. that he's too small for major college basketball and he'll smile. Tell him he's not good enough and that smile will be gone as quick as the ball off his hand as he rises for a shot.

"I've had a chip on my shoulder my whole life," he told Dawgman.com Monday. "People have always said he not good; all the does is shoot; the only reason he averages so many points is because he takes a ton of shots…so I've had a chip on my shoulder. People are always going to doubt me and everyone is going to say that he's too small to do this or he's not athletic enough to do that - but that's what they said about (Dan) Dickau and those guys.

"I just want to prove that I can play at the highest level and that I can do more than just shoot and that I'm an elite basketball player that can contribute a lot at the Pac-10 level."

And he wouldn't be the first Kingma sibling to do it either; his sister Kristi is getting ready for her junior season playing hoops at Washington. Their father, Gregg, was an All-American at Seattle Pacific and mother Gail was a competitive marathoner. Growing up a Kingma meant you better get ready for a competitive game of driveway hoops, that's for sure.

Brett averaged 25 points, four steals and four assists per game for Jackson High School as a junior, helping the Timberwolves to a spot in the Class 4A title game, where they lost to UCLA-bound Josh Smith and Kentwood.

During his time at Jackson, nothing much had happened to take evaluators off the thought that Kingma was nothing but a one-trick pony. "It's like they already pin-pointed me as a mid-major kid, a kid that could shoot but couldn't do much else," he said. "It's always kind of been there, but game-in and game-out I was more consistent with my performances on the defensive end every game. And also taking care of the ball and making smart decisions, showing I can do that every game and not just turn it on and off."

A move from Emerald City to Friends of Hoop this summer proved to be a smart move for Kingma. His improved strength and athleticism started showing itself, but not necessarily right away. "I think I've become a smarter player, taking better shots," he said. "I can set my teammates up if my shots aren't falling. It's been there all along, but I've mixed it in with my game a lot better, mixed my shooting with my driving and passing and setting people up, whereas I'm not as predictable."

But as late as a month ago, Kingma was wondering if he'd get any major love at all. After FOH was eliminated early in a tournament in Bellevue, he didn't know what he wanted to do. BYU was the mid-major that had been recruiting him the longest, so he started thinking more about them.

But as the summer wore on, Kingma began hitting his stride, and strong performances at the Fab 48 in Las Vegas and the Desert Duel in Phoenix ensured he would be hearing from more coaches soon.

"All the coaches that saw me said they loved how I got out in passing lanes," Kingma said. "They said I took the most charges out of anyone this past summer. I can play defense and distribute the ball, do more than just shoot."

The UW coaches apparently saw all they needed to, and Kingma heard from them shortly after the Desert Duel. "I got a call from coach (Lorenzo) Romar," he said. "He said that he's always wanted me to be a Husky, but he just wanted to be 100 percent sure that I could contribute at that level. He was like, 'I have no doubt in my mind that people have doubted you and you've shown them that you can do all that stuff and that you don't have a weak area.' So he said that the offer is there. Then we just talked about what my timeframe is for making a decision."

The shock was palpable. Kingma had finally been vindicated as a player to be reckoned with. His father told him what an honor it was to be offered by the Huskies, considering the level of talent they had been bringing in under Romar.

"It took in a while to sink in," Kingma said of the news. "My sister goes there, so they have the home-town advantage. But we just want to make sure it's the right fit for me."

Oregon, Vanderbilt, Washington, BYU, Pepperdine, Colorado State, Portland and Seattle University are the offers Kingma is currently claiming. He just visited Washington unofficially and is on his way to do the same at Oregon. He will take a couple of official visits - most likely BYU, Oregon and Washington - and then sign a letter of intent during the early signing period in November. Vanderbilt, Boston College and Pepperdine appear to be on the outside looking in right now.

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