11/12/09 — McCarter, Hobbs sign D-I letters

View Archive

McCarter, Hobbs sign D-I letters

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on November 12, 2009 1:48 PM

No choice is wrong when you follow your heart. Reco McCarter and Tim Hobbs certainly hope that sentiment is true.

Less than two months after announcing their respective verbal commitments, the Wayne Country Day basketball standouts made it official Wednesday morning. McCarter signed a national letter-of-intent with Virginia Commonwealth, while Hobbs inked with North Carolina Central.

"They both had some other opportunities, some that others would think are better, but they were looking to go somewhere they could be an intricate part (of the program), have a solid career and make the best of a great opportunity academically as well as athletically," said third-year WCDS head coach Terry Jones.

McCarter drew attention from perennial Division I powers Wake Forest, Boston College, Oklahoma and Clemson. Coaches from USC-Upstate, The Citadel, Western Carolina and Elon University courted Hobbs.

Nearly bookend twins when they stand back-to-back, the similarities between Hobbs and McCarter end there. Hobbs prefers to slash his way to the basket and challenge for rebounds. McCarter utilizes his height, speed and length on defense to wreak havoc on opposing point guards.

"Two totally different players," said Jones. "Reco, at the next level, has point guard potential. Hobbs, at that high level, is looking to establish himself as a small forward and he will do that over time."

N.C. Central began its third season on the Division I level Wednesday evening at 2009 national champion North Carolina. The Eagles officially join the Mideastern Athletic Conference in July, 2010.

Hobbs relishes the chance to help NCCU's program grow.

"They have a good environment as far as academics, athletics and school history," said Hobbs, who plans to pursue a degree in psychology. "I feel like I can go there and succeed because there are lots of things that can be done. I feel like the sky is the limit. I know it's not going to come easy and that I'll have to work.

"I'm ready for the challenge."

VCU seized its third consecutive Colonial Athletic Association regular-season championship last season. The Rams logged 24 victories and lost an opening-round game to UCLA in the NCAA tournament.

McCarter likes the program's up-tempo philosophy. The lanky athlete nows he's got to build his stamina and add some bulk to his frame to handle the physical play synonymous with the CAA.

"It's a good fit for me," said McCarter, who plans to study either sociology or nursing. "The hardest thing for a freshman coming in is getting used to the strength and conditioning (program). I've got to get stronger. At the next level, everyone is big and fast. What separates you from the other players is how smart you play."

Hobbs and McCarter, a pair of all-conference performers, each averaged a double-double for the Chargers last season. McCarter, who earned all-state recognition, knocked down 19.4 points and grabbed 12.2 boards. Hobbs collected 18.1 points and 11.3 rebounds.

WCDS made its second consecutive appearance in the N.C. Independent Schools Athletic Association 1-A elite eight a year ago. The Chargers have posted 43 victories, and finished runners-up twice in Coastal Plains Independent Conference regular-season and tournament play with Hobbs and McCarter in the lineup over a two-year period.

"I'm very confident with their (college) choices," said Jones. "As they know, first things first, and that's academics. They're both in a great situation and they really have no excuses. Outside of that, you make the best of the opportunities you are given.

"But at the same time we know the reason they are there is to be students first."

And to always follow their heart.