CHARLOTTE, N.C. – When Isaiah Todd transferred to Trinity Academy (Raleigh, N.C.) after leading John Marshall High School (Richmond, Va.) to a state title last season, he was dead-set on making great strides in his development as a leader.
“With my development as a player and as a person it’s gonna be like a crockpot not a microwave,” Todd said. “I just feel like that’s the best way to get better long-term.”
It certainly seems to be working so far; this season, Todd is averaging 26 points, 17 rebounds, five blocks and four assists a game.
He pumped in 20 points and 11 rebounds despite fouling out early in the fourth quarter of the Tigers’ 75-70 loss to Northside Christian Academy (Charlotte, N.C.) Saturday at the Crown Town Classic.
Todd likened his experience at Trinity this season to LeBron James’ situation with the Lakers in terms of trying to build the team into a championship contender.
The Tigers finished 8-17 last season, they’re sitting at 9-4 this season.
“I try and use my experiences being a USA Basketball gold medalist, a state champion and playing with other elite players to help my team,” said Todd, who is ranked No. 7 overall in USA Today Sports’ Chosen 25 for 2020. “Whether they’re on that level, have the ability to reach that level or may not ever reach that level I try to be a guy that they like to hangout with off the court and a guy they want to go to war behind on the court.”
ESPN director of basketball recruiting Paul Biancardi said that Todd’s growth in that area can potentially payoff big for Trinity.
“He’s a terrific teammate and he’s always uplifting his guys,” Biancardi said. “Sometimes he gets into foul trouble, but when he’s on the bench he’s got unbelievable activity, he’s engaged and that shows me how much he cares about his teammates. I think he can galvanize them to a state championship.”
Todd’s mentality has college coaches drooling at the chance of landing the versatile 6-foot-10 forward.
North Carolina, Kentucky, Maryland, Providence, N.C. State, Oklahoma State and Vanderbilt, among many others, are all giving spirited chase.
Still, Todd said his focus is solely on the Tigers.
“I’ve gone to some games at North Carolina because they’re close, but I’m more focused on my season right now,” Todd said. “My goal is to get better and get my team better. I’m putting everything into that.”
Follow Jason Jordan on Twitter: @JayJayUSATODAY