The good folks at Word of God have had historical glory days. Glory days that used to pack gyms across America and put fear in opponents, knowing that the Holy Rams were their matchup for the night. Glory days where dominate forces were featured in their program! Household names like CJ Leslie, Dez Wells, TJ Warren and of course, NBA All-Star John Wall all proudly wore the Holy Rams jersey. After a few lackluster seasons, a resurgence is happening on the Word Of God campus. Starting with the hiring of Head Coach Byron Williams at the helm. Coach Williams wasted no time bringing in a group of new players to mesh with a few familiar faces. After countless conversations with Coach Williams and frequent recent visits to the infamous purple and gold gym, GetMeRecruited has concluded this 2019 Holy Rams roster has all the makings of a national powerhouse! Here’s our top 5 reason why Word Of God will return to national powerhouse prominence:
1) Isaiah Todd– Five years ago we evaluated Isaiah Todd, then a young middle school kid, and wrote “After watching him knock down several shots from deep, If he gets consistent with his jumper, Isaiah Todd could become a household name. He already has high-major written all over him...”.
Fast forward to 2019 where the recent transfer, 2020 6’10 F Isaiah Todd, is now ranked #1 in NC & #7 in the nation! By the way, he’s now hitting that jumper consistently. With a monster defensive presence and point forward capabilities, this game-changer has narrowed his lottery contestants down to 5: UNC, Kentucky, Memphis, Kansas, and Michigan. Make no mistake about it, having Isaiah Todd would put almost any team into national contention.
2) Saiquone Harris– Saiquone Harris, a name our staff is very familiar with, is another key piece to the Word Of God puzzle. Watching him play in a plethora of settings, Garner HS, Juice All-Stars NC, and of course the most well respected exposure showcase in North Carolina, GetMeRecruited's Super 60 Showdown, our sentiments about this young man remain! He has the ability to totally dominate a game from all three levels. Unfortunately, he may also be the most under-valued and overlooked player in his state and class. Standing 6’7 at the wing position, when Saiquone is locked in, he’s aggressively attacking the rim while confident enough to drain it from nearly anywhere on the floor. Now surrounded by other great players, we expect Saiquone to fully blossom and show what we know he’s capable of.
3) Po’Boigh King– Last season, after a trip to Roanoke Rapids HS, we told you about a kid that highly impressed us with his ability to put up numbers. Well now that same 6’3 scoring machine, Po’Boigh King, has transferred to Word of God and given the Holy Rams access to instantaneous offense. This kid can flat out score and has a credible claim to being the most prolific and efficient shooter in North Carolina’s class of 2022. He’s not flashy by any means, but he’s a very hard defensive assignment due to his ability to create space, quick release from any spot on the floor, and his dominance around the rim. Receiving an offer from Arizona State just hours before this article was written, this young man could be the x-factor for Coach Williams.
4) Chase Forte– Every successful team, especially on a national level, could use a floor general with poise, patience, and a high basketball IQ. Insert Holy Rams returning point guard Chase Forte. This kid possesses the leadership Word of God will need as they face every opponents’ best punch night after night. Chase is a leader is vocal when necessary but specializes in leading by example. Strong with the ball and athletic, Chase is an unselfish scorer in his own right, sharing the ball as needed but also unafraid to go get a bucket or step up in big moments to take the last shot when the game is on the line. There’s no question the experience Chase brings to the floor will surely benefit Word of God in their quest to return back to prominence.
5) Coach Byron Williams– Taking over as head coach for Word of God after a few disappointing seasons could be very stressful for most people, but not for Coach Byron Williams. This guy is relatively young, energetic, experienced, and has the confidence to build a national powerhouse from day one. Coach Williams, a Florida native, is a people’s person who knows how to relate to his kids, inject his confidence into them, while requiring the discipline they will need to have success on a national level. He brings along a wealth of basketball knowledge as he both played and coached at Shaw University, quite successfully might we add. Professional players like Flip Murray and Amir Hinton flourished under the tutelage of Coach Williams and there’s no reason to doubt this 2019 - 2020 Word Of God team will too. With Coach Williams running the show, we can all expect gyms across the nation to be packed every night as the Holy Rams take the floor.
Josiah Shackleford– 2020 6’8 post player who will play a key role defensively and on the glass; nephew of NC State alum Charles Shackleford
Kenechi & Kanayo Nwosu– What’s better than having a player that gives you maximum effort in the paint? Having 2….2021 6’6 twins bring length and activeness in the paint; workhorses with extreme work ethics
Keys to success:
Defense:Although Word of God has one of the deadliest stockpiles of offense as anyone in the nation, if they are to be successful they must use their size and length to their advantage on the other end as well and dedicate themselves to defense
Mental toughness: Playing for the Holy Rams you must have thick skin and be able to play under pressure. Teams will give these guys their best shot each and every night and Word of God will have to be mentally tough enough to withstand those taunts and runs
Bench:Word of God can be comparable to almost any other squad when it comes to the starting 5, however their success will rely heavily on their bench production as they face many of the national teams with strong subs