Bristol Central center Donovan Clingan came into the week with seven scholarship offers to major Division I college basketball programs.
That amount nearly doubled over the first two days of this week as schools continue to pursue Clingan’s services.
Clingan, a 7-foot-1 rising junior, said he has received scholarship offers from Michigan State, Rutgers, Notre Dame, Yale, Virginia Tech and Maryland this week. He already had them from UConn, Georgetown, Syracuse, Providence, Iowa, Boston College and UMass.
Clingan announced all of the offers on his Twitter page.
Blessed to receive an offer Michigan State University! pic.twitter.com/vz3TbWl6uP
— Donovan Clingan (@clingan_donovan) June 15, 2020
“I’ve probably had 20 phone calls already (this week). I haven’t gotten any today (Wednesday). It’s been pretty quiet,” said Clingan, 16. “This is all new to me. It’s been a learning experience.”
Monday was the first day college coaches could reach out to potential recruits per NCAA regulations. Previously, coaches have been permitted to contact either Bristol Central coach Tim Barrette or Clingan’s AAU coach, Joe Chatman of the AAU Boston Spartans.
“Donovan is very excited and his family is very excited. We’ve all had permanent smiles on our face for three days,” Barrette said.
There is reason to be excited when some of the most prominent head college basketball coaches in the country give you a call. Clingan said he spoke this week to Tom Izzo (Michigan State), Jim Boeheim (Syracuse), Patrick Ewing (Georgetown), Danny Hurley (UConn), Mike Brey (Notre Dame), Steve Pikiell (Rutgers), James Jones (Yale) and Fran McCaffery (Iowa).
“It feels like I am dreaming with some of these coaches calling me,” Clingan said.
Clingan said he has put on between 20-25 pounds (260 currently) and grown almost 2 inches since the basketball season ended in March. He is unsure when he will make a verbal commitment, but there isn’t any rush with two more seasons at Bristol Central.
When that decision does come, Clingan will weigh a lot of factors. “I need to have good chemistry with my teammates, good coaches, a good atmosphere, good academics and a good campus,” Clingan said.
Said Barrette: “We know there is a lot of work ahead. With these offers come expectations.”
Barrette noted that Clingan hasn’t spent the week sitting by the phone – he’s been doing some landscaping.
“That tells you so much about the kid. He is just such a worker. It never stops,” Barrette said.
Clingan averaged 24.8 points, 17.2 rebounds and 6.4 blocks for the Rams. He also shot 66 percent from the floor. Clingan, a Register/GameTimeCT all-state selection, already has scored over 1,000 career points and grabbed over 750 rebounds.
Bristol Central finished the season at 17-5. The Rams were the No. 4 seed in the Division II state tournament, but never got to play a game. The CIAC cancelled the remainder of the winter postseason tournaments due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
So that leaves some unfinished business for Clingan at Bristol Central. Staying put – and not transferring to a prep school – is something he said the college coaches have supported.
“They all agree with me on why I’m staying at Bristol Central,” Clingan said. “I know I’m not leaving right now and I don’t plan on leaving. There is no reason for me to leave.”
Spears to St. Thomas More
Windsor guard Amir Spears announced on his Twitter account Monday that he will take a post-graduate year at St. Thomas More.
Spears, a 6-2 senior guard, averaged 20 points, 10 assists, five rebounds and four steals per game for the Warriors. He finished with over 1,000 career points.
Spears is also a Register/GameTimeCT all-state selection.
Jackson headed to Canterbury
Mason Jackson, who helped lead Norwich Free Academy to a 23-0 record, is transferring to Canterbury prep school and reclassifying as a junior. Jackson announced his decision on Twitter in May.
“I’m pretty sad I’m leaving all my friends, but I decided what was best for me. I never thought I would reclass and repeat a grade. It’s scary at times to change. But I like meeting new people; I’ve always had an easy time talking to people. It should be fun,” Jackson told the Day of New London last month.
Jackson, a 6-5 swingman, averaged 20.8 points, 6.8 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 2.3 steals per game for the Eastern Connecticut Conference Division I champions. The ECC tournament MVP, Jackson was also a Register/GameTimeCT all-state selection this past season.