Grand Rapids Catholic Central’s Marcus Bingham always idolized NBA player Kevin Durant growing up, and that was before he got to high school and became a 6-foot-2 guard on the basketball court.
However, what has happened over the past three years has really made Bingham want to emulate Durant.
Bingham has grown eight inches since his freshman year — and is now 6-10, about as tall as Durant, and has a 7-4 wingspan.
Combining his guard skills with that growth spurt has helped Bingham become a finalist for the Hal Schram Mr. Basketball award as well as one of the top recruits in the nation. He has signed with Michigan State.
“He is one of the greatest to ever play this game and he is my height,” Bingham said of Durant. “So why not try to model my game after him?”
Going into Monday’s regional semifinal against Spring Lake at Grand Rapids West Catholic, Bingham is averaging 18 points, 11 rebounds and four blocks a game. Those numbers might be higher had he not been taken out of so many lopsided wins in the fourth quarter this year.
Bingham has long had excellent ball-handling and perimeter shooting skills, but with his growth spurt has learned how to score along the interior with post moves or face-up jump shots.
“My dad is 6-7, but it just kind of happened,” Bingham said of his spurt. “Everyone was kind of surprised.”
As much as his growth spurt transformed him as a basketball player, it has had greater effects off of the court.