(Citynet Statewide Sportsline interview with Teays Valley Christian head coach Travis Tarr)
MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — Huntington Prep graduate Isaiah Cottrell is getting his Mountaineer career started as a freshman at WVU. A pair of players who competed against him this year could soon join Cottrell in Morgantown.
Teays Valley Christian Prep rising juniors Jerome Beya and Josiah Davis both recently received scholarship offers from Bob Huggins. Davis is a 6-foot-3 guard and Beya is a 6-foot-9 post player.
“Jerome is a freak athlete,” said Teays Valley Christian head coach Travis Tarr. “He is an elite rim protector. He rebounds and starts transition really well. He has a really good motor.”
Beya is a native of the African nation of Congo. Tarr likens his ability to WVU rising sophomore Oscar Tshiebwe.
“He is a very similar player in what you see in Oscar with the intensity that he plays with and the physicality. In regards to him getting better, what we are focused on right now with Jerome is his body development. He is a little lean so we are putting weight on him. He has a great touch with both the left and the right hand around the rim. He is still developing his instincts with his back to the basket.
“He got into the sport in seventh or eighth grade in Africa in an NBA camp. He then came here as a freshman and during that time, he really just played off his athleticism.”
In addition to WVU, Beya has received scholarship offers from Illinois, North Carolina State, Oregon, South Florida, Temple, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest and Xavier. Beya’s performance in TVCS’ season finale against Huntington Prep in February drew significant attention.
“There were several college coaches in attendance at that time. He was going against Isaiah Cottrell, who has signed with WVU. Cincinnati was present, Clemson was present and I believe Illinois was there. They got to see his shot blocking tendencies and his athleticism and the speed he plays at.
“From a development standpoint, he is coming along very quick.”
Josiah Davis is a native of Canada. He averaged thirteen points per game for Teays Valley Christian in his sophomore season and WVU represents his first ‘Power 5’ scholarship offer.
“He is a bulldog. Josiah was a recruit that we got to see during the summer last year and he was a combo guard. He plays naturally off the ball. But he knows for him to get to the next level, he has to be a point guard.
“He has a huge ceiling and is somebody West Virginia fans would love.”
The pandemic has limited in-person recruiting visits for both players and the duo still has plenty of time to field offers before committing.
“From a coaching standpoint, we will weigh pros and cons. Recruitment is still early for these guys. If we get to have a season this year, which I pray we do, we will have an opportunity to have a lot of college coaches in.”
Poca rising junior Isaac McKneely also holds a WVU scholarship offer in the Class of 2022.