Due to injuries, Keigan Kerby didn't get full opportunity in high school to show the type of basketball player he was.
Now healthy, the 6-foot-7 University of Tennessee at Chattanooga freshman wants to make up for lost time.
Kerby had only one healthy season — his 12th-grade year — while playing at Brooks School in New Hampshire, where he was rated as a two-star prospect, the No. 26 player in Massachusetts and the No. 74 player in New England.
His freshman season ended with a broken leg. The next two seasons included a couple of foot surgeries that also caused him to miss the live circuit (AAU season) prior to his senior season, but as a senior he was All-New England Preparatory School Athletic Council as well as the most valuable player of the state championship game.
Prior to his injuries, Kerby had attracted interest from some Atlantic-10 programs, with an offer from George Washington.
"Going to a mid-major was a big adjustment for me. It changed my perspective, but it also put in perspective how these levels of basketball are so close," Kerby said last week. "The separation of players is almost none, and having been at that level and seen that I could get that type of interest and offers gives me confidence to come here and try to do my best and see what I could give to this team."
What he hopes to give the youthful Mocs is effort, defense and rebounding. He's going to be one of four players on the season-opening roster standing at least 6-7, and those are contributions the team is going to need all season, but especially in the first semester when it will be without 6-8 Ramon Vila due to NCAA transfer rules.
"Getting in shape and staying in the right shape will be big," Kerby said. "My motor is where I try to thrive and play as hard as I can at all times. One thing (Massachusetts Rivals AAU coach) Vin Pastore tried to give to us was to tell us to play every play as hard as we can, because that would give us the best chance to get on the court.
"I know Coach (Lamont Paris) values defense more than anything, and I do, too. I can shoot and can score a little bit, but the areas we need as a team most is defense and rebounding, so I'll do what I can to help in those aspects."
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