Bulldog coaches 'stay the course' to land skilled wing
By Tom Davis, Tdavis@news-sentinel.com
Wednesday, January 11, 2017 8:26 PM
This is the third in a four-part series to run this week on the future of Butler basketball.
Anyone who watched Butler’s most recent victory over Georgetown had to have felt positive regarding the future of the Bulldog men’s basketball program.
Sophomore center Nate Fowler played the best game of his career (11 points, four rebounds and solid defense in 19 very productive minutes), while freshman guard Kamar Baldwin had one of his, now fairly regular, “he may be Butler’s best player” games.
Baldwin played a team-high 41 minutes in the overtime victory and led the Bulldogs with 16 points and four steals, while also grabbing five rebounds.
The 12th-rated Bulldogs (14-2, 3-1 Big East) not only have those two players back in 2017-18, but also return six other players. In addition, Butler’s class of 2017 recruiting class is the highest rated in school history.
“We are obviously very excited about this incoming class,” third-year coach Chris Holtmann said upon signing four players in November. “To continue to compete in the Big East Conference, and at the highest level nationally, we must build our roster with consecutive quality recruiting classes that fit our program, and this group of young men fit that description.
“These are high-character individuals who appreciate Butler’s educational opportunities, our history, and our culture. On the court, this group is very versatile and skilled, and they value winning. The entire staff did an excellent job of evaluating and prioritizing this group.
“We’re excited for the impact they are going to have on our program in future years.”
The News-Sentinel will profile each of the four players in a series this week, and up next is Christian David.
Name: Christian David
School: Vermont Academy
The latest: David is a native of Milton, Ontario and is of Filipino descent. He attends Vermont Academy, a traditional boarding school in southern Vermont and is highly skilled. The Wildcats are the defending NEPSAC AA champions and finished 24-7 last season. Currently, Vermont Academy is 6-5 and faced Brewster Academy on Wednesday. They will travel to Boston Saturday to take part in the BABC Prep Classic and the Spalding Hoophall Classic in Springfield, Mass. Sunday. David recovered from a knee injury suffered last spring after averaging 13 points per game for a talent-laden squad that featured multiple college players. David features length (he has a 6-foot-10 wingspan) and perimeter skill. He can “really shoot the ball,” according to Holtmann, but he is adept at passing and handling the ball, as well. First-year Bulldog assistant coach Mike Schrage was instrumental in the recruitment of David following his time recruiting him for Stanford earlier. The Bulldogs beat out, among others, Big East foe Creighton, for David.
Holtmann on David: “Christian is a really cerebral, skilled, big wing that can really shoot the ball. We needed to continue to find some wings that can come in and have an impact. We’re really excited about (Christian) and really excited about our class. I can’t give our staff enough credit for identifying those guys and pursuing them and staying the course with them. A couple of them we really had to stay the course with. I spent more time in Vermont – can I say than I’d ever like to spend? But anyway, we’re excited about this class.”
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