Stop sleeping on Jamel Horton

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The combo guard is the most underrated player in the city

The playoffs at is8 were jam packed with talented young hoopers, scouts and rowdy spectators hoping to feast their eyes on the next big thing in NYC basketball. Many of the names on the court were already established, but clout and rankings can only get you so far in the historic South Jamaica tournament. With “Bring your game, not your name” stamped on the back of each jersey, a slender Queens guard made the most of his opportunity to prove he is among NYC’s elite, and left everyone watching with the same thought in mind: “That Jamel Horton kid can BALL.” The former Holy Cross star took home the chip with his squad, and copped the MVP for good measure. While the championship was more important to him, Horton was humbled by the individual award as well. “I can’t say I wasn’t honored,” He says. “Growing up, the list of players I’ve seen get MVP in Is8 is ridiculous.” Horton can now add his name in the mix, as the late bloomer has the look of a sure shot D-1 player.

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“I would change so much about my high school career if I could.”

Horton had a solid career for Holy Cross, but when reminiscing his time as a Knight, he can’t help but have some regrets. “I would change so much about my high school career if I could,” He says. “I feel like when it was my turn to be the leader or go to guy my senior year, I was held back.” Despite that road block, he still stood out as one of the top guards in the loaded CHSAA, and left with a newfound mindset. He is now at peace with his time at Cross, using his high school experience to serve as a lesson learned and fuel for his next venture.

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“My dad always told me that basketball is a privilege, not a right.”

Next season, Horton will be taking his talents to the storied Juco program of Seward Community College in Kansas. The school should serve as the perfect spot for him to continue to blossom as a student athlete and hopefully, blow up on the recruiting trail. “My dad always told me that basketball is a privilege, not a right,” He says.”Getting it done in the classroom allows you to get it done on the court.” Down the line, Horton has dreams of playing professionally, whether it be in the NBA or overseas. As his game and career progresses, expect him to continue to play with a chip on his shoulder, as the feeling of being overlooked and under the radar is still fresh on his mind. “If I told you it didn’t bother me over the years I’d be lying, but that’s just motivation to get better & keep showing people what you’re capable of,” He says. A rapidly improving player with a killer’s mindset is a scary combination for any hooper and that’s just what Horton has these days. It won’t be long until the Juco ranks and eventually the NCAA see that for themsleves.