10@10: Two-sport stars

8 Jun

By Justin Young
National Hoops Report

With St. John’s signee Amir Garrett contemplating a career in Major League Baseball after being selected in the 22nd round by the Cincinnati Reds, I wondered, who else has struggled with two-sport decisions?

Here’s 10 that jump out over the last decade:

1. Jonathan Baldwin (Pittsburgh football) – He was a Rivals150 prospect but had a big football career that pushed out his future for hoops. Baldwin would have been a nice four-year player at the Atlantic 10 level.

2. Chase Budinger (Arizona basketball) – The California kid gave up a dazzling volleyball career for a chance to play in Tucson. As a 6-foot-7 and athletic striker, Budinger had his pick of the litter for volleyball in college.

3. Josh Chichester (Ohio State/Louisville basketball) – With offers from Cincinnati, Xavier, Dayton and others, the long and lanky forward accepted a scholarship offer from Ohio State football. After failing to make the grade for OSU, he switched over to Louisville.

4. Glen “Big Baby” Davis (LSU basketball) – They call him BIIIIGGGGG BBBBAAAABBBBYYYY. That’s a retro shout-out for those of you that saw him (and his most famous cheerleader) in AAU back in the day. A likely five-star football player turned down the SEC (and likely the NFL) for a basketball career.

5. Seantrel Henderson (Miami football) – The mammoth 6-foot-8 offensive lineman couldn’t have played basketball simply because he’s a rare breed in football as a left tackle. Had the former No. 2 overall player decided to flirt with college hoops, there is no doubt a Big Ten school would have jumped at the Minnesota prospect.

6. C.J. Henry (Memphis/Kansas basketball) – A nationally recruited player in basketball, Henry was taken 17th overall in 2005 by the New York Yankees. He signed for $1.5 million and passed on a chance to play at KU. Three years later, he dropped baseball to play at Memphis with his brother Xavier Henry but when John Calipair left for Kentucky, Henry went to Kansas with his brother. Currently, C.J. is playing at Southern Nazarene University, a NAIA school.

7. Cameron Heyward (Ohio State football) – I watched the recent first round draft pick defend Dwight Howard about as good as any player I ever watched in high school. Oh yeah, Heyward was just a freshman. Had Heyward decided to go the basketball route, he would have been a SoCon level player.

8. Austin Jackson (Georgia Tech basketball) – If you talk to Paul Hewitt, this one still hurts. The Yellow Jackets signed him out of Texas but the Yankees drafted him and paid him big money. Jackson is currently an outfielder for the Detroit Tigers and never played at GT.

9. Greg Paulus (Duke basketball/Syracuse football) – When he was coming out of high school, he was a hot target for the big time football programs as a quarterback. He said no to Notre Dame to play at Duke as a point guard. He later returned as a fifth year player to play at Syracuse.

10. Terrelle Pryor (Ohio State football/Pitt basketball) – See this story.

There are clearly some other guys that could easily be on the list. Who are they? Leave your suggestions in the comments section below or talk about it on the Facebook page.

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3 Responses to “10@10: Two-sport stars”

  1. justindyoung June 10, 2011 at 12:00 pm #

    Andrew Brackman went on to pitch for NC State. He was a top 100 hooper. I should have included him on the list, too.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. SLAM ONLINE | » In High Demand - June 10, 2011

    […] seem to be an outlier. It’s not odd for athletes to be sought after in multiple sports … happens all the time. Theory being: An athlete is an athlete is an athlete. But for whatever reason, a college […]

  2. In High Demand - June 10, 2011

    […] seem to be an outlier. It’s not odd for athletes to be sought after in multiple sports … happens all the time. Theory being: An athlete is an athlete is an athlete. But for whatever reason, a college […]

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