Big scorers in high school on the short side of 6-feet tall usually hear all about their likely limitations when it comes to major-college basketball.
Jhamir Brickus welcomed the doubts as though they were defenders trying to trap him in the backcourt.
“It made me go harder,” Brickus says. “It just made me put in more work.”
The 5-11 Brickus, the all-time leading scorer in Coatesville Area High School history, on Wednesday announced his decision to attend La Salle University on a basketball scholarship.
Brickus said he was sold on the Big 5 school at 20th and Olney by the Explorers’ playing style and his relationship with head coach Ashley Howard and his assistants.
“They play fast, use a lot of pick-and-roll, and that’s my game," Brickus said.
About Howard and his coaches, Brickus said, “They’ve been recruiting me hard for a long time. They all were involved, all made me feel wanted, and they believed in me.”
Brickus said he believes he can make an immediate impact for La Salle, which went 15-15 this season. The Explorers were scheduled to play Davidson in the first round of the Atlantic 10 tournament before the event was canceled because of the coronavirus outbreak.
La Salle’s starting guards, Isiah Deas and Saul Phiri, are seniors.
“I think I can go in there and play right away,” Brickus said.
Brickus, who finished his high school career with 2,531 points, also had offers from Rider and Bryant.
In announcing his decision on Instagram, Brickus said: “Some said I was too small, others said I was too laid back, this team respected my game the way I bring it. I’m blessed to say that I will be continuing my academic and athletic career at La Salle University.
“I want to thank everyone for their love and support throughout my high school career in Coatesville. It was all love. Go Explorers.”
Brickus became Coatesville’s all-time leading scorer in January, passing the mark of 2,271 points set in 2001 by John Allen, who later starred at Seton Hall.
Coatesville coach Marc Turner said Brickus was far more than a scorer for the Red Raiders.
“You hear about all the points he scores, but he’s one of the most unselfish scorers I’ve ever seen as a high school basketball player,” Turner said earlier this season. “He plays within himself and makes the right play.”
Brickus averaged 23.1 points this season, leading Coatesville to a 20-8 record. The Red Raiders tied West Chester East for first place in the Ches-Mont League National Division during the regular season.
Brickus scored 26 in his final game, an 81-75 loss to Roman Catholic on March 7 in the first round of the PIAA Class 6A tournament.