Published Wednesday, June 24, 2009 | 12:31 p.m.
Updated Wednesday, June 24, 2009 | 1:17 p.m.
Jabari Brown, a 6-foot-3, 185-pound guard from Oakland who helped his high school basketball team win a California state title last season, is transferring to Findlay College Prep.
Brown told the Contra Costa Times, in the San Francisco Bay Area, that he had been pondering the move for the past year.
“It’s hard to leave, but sometimes you’ve got to make tough decisions like that,” Brown told the paper. “It’s tougher competition that will make me work harder in practice every day.”
Brown will be a junior in 2009-10. Scouts, Inc., ranks him as a top-20 national shooting guard, and the best in California, in the Class of 2011. He averaged 19.6 points at Salesian High, which went 31-4 and won the California Interscholastic Federation Division IV state championship.
"He’s an ideal fit for our program," said Findlay coach Mike Peck. "We are confidant that he will have a big impact and help us sustain the level of success that we have reached. His skill, size, athleticism, and moreover his demeanor lend itself to thriving in our system.”
Findlay finished a 33-0 campaign by beating Oak Hill Acadmy in the title game of the inaugural National High School Invitational in Maryland. The Pilots played in eight states, part of which attracted Brown to the program.
“I always wanted to play in the different tournaments you see on ESPN,” Brown told the Times. “All the stuff at Salesian was great, it was definitely a great experience. (Findlay Prep) is just a lot different. It’s bigger still.”
Brown said it will be like going to college two years early and that his parents are supportive of his decision. He knows the move will help him in the long run.
“This will definitely get me ready to make a big impact my first year of college,” Brown said. “It will be hard, but something I’m willing to do to make that sacrifice. I want to be successful.”