Future is now for sophomore star, traditional state power

The history is there.

Channing Frye

The Fontenet brothers.

Demetrius Walker.

Jerryd Bayless.

Now the present and future of St. Mary’s basketball is sophomore point guard Marcus Shaver who is hoping to lead the young Knights back to the top like many of the elite players before him.

He’s getting some excellent advice on and off the floor from Bayless who went on to star at the University of Arizona and now plays for the Boston Celtics. He played for Bayless’ AAU team this spring, which partners with the powerhouse Compton Magic club squad which was rated as the top team in the country last year.

“He’s helped me a lot,” Shaver told Sports360AZ.com in a recent interview. “He’s a good guy. He mentors me a lot, helps with everything.”

Things are turning around for the private central Phoenix school thanks in part to the six-foot, 165-pound playmaker who models his game after Damian Lillard and Tony Parker. Shaver burst on the scene averaging 23 points, five assists and nearly three steals a game last winter. He was one of seven freshmen on a team which finished 16-11 and went unbeaten in a recent Arizona State camp.

“I think we’ll make it further this year, definitely.”

He’s spent the summer looking to improve coming off screens and becoming a quicker, better on and off-the-ball defender.

Even with three years of prep ball left Shaver has already garnered interest from ASU, Arizona and UCLA. The list is certain grow, much like the Knights’ win total in the coming years.