JuCo Spotlight: Algie Key
The Georgia native is blossoming at Barton Community College.
by Brad Winton / @JuCorecruiting
Players arrive at junior colleges for a variety of reasons. Some have academic issues, some transfer from Division I schools so they don’t have to sit out, others need to continue to develop their game.
Many JuCo players move onto have great careers at four-year schools while others are never heard from again. JuCo transfers like Jae Crowder (Marquette), Pierre Jackson (Baylor) and Ricardo Ratliffe (Missouri) are a few of the hundreds who have had recent success at the next level.
Algie Key is one of the best junior college guards in the country and hopes to have an excellent career after junior college like some of the previously mentioned players. The 6-4 combo guard from Decatur, GA, had a breakout season as a freshman at Barton County Community College in Great Bend, KS.
Barton is one of the best junior college programs in the country and is part of one of the best conferences, the Jayhawk Conference. Key averaged 19 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists this season and was named Jayhawk Conference West Division Freshman of the Year. He was also the only freshman in the Jayhawk who was named First-Team All-Conference. Key picked up First-Team All-Region honors as well. He was also named NJCAA National Player of the Week and Jayhawk Conference Player of the Week in February.
Key’s game has continued to develop under the tutelage of head coach Craig Fletchall and assistant Matt Hundley at Barton. Barton finished the season with a 26-7 record.
Key has a lot to say about about how his first year of junior college improved his game.
“It’s been good so far,” Key said. “You have to bring it every day because of how good the Jayhawk Conference is. The competition is great and that’s why I came here, because I was looking for a high level of competition. I like being pushed and Coach [Fletchall] does that. He pushes us on the court and in the classroom to be the best we can be. So far it has been a perfect fit for me.”
Key had interest from many mid- and high-majors while in high school, but he wasn’t a household name on a national scale. Key’s recruitment will continue to skyrocket next season when he returns to Barton, but he is already hearing from VCU, Memphis, Virginia and a large group of mid- and high-majors.
“I’m looking for a school that has a great history and tradition of winning,” Key explained. “I want to go somewhere where they have had success. I want to go somewhere that has a good coaching staff who likes to run. It has to be the right fit. I’m not concerned with the name on the front of the jersey; I don’t get caught up in the mid-major and high-major stuff. I just want it to be the right fit.”
Key is quiet and humble off the court and doesn’t need much to keep him happy. He is content with furthering his education and working on his game.
“On the court I’m always trying to get better and improve different parts of my game,” Key said. “I just want to continue to improve. I’m a combo guard, but I don’t care what position I play, as long as I’m on the court. Off the court, I just focus on staying on top of things in the classroom. I’m trying to make it to the next level and get my degree.”
Don’t forget the name Algie Key next season. As a JuCo sophomore, he will sit near the top of almost every NCAA DI’s recruiting list.
Brad Winton is a former college/pro coach. He runs JuCoRecruiting.com as well as The JuCo Recruiting Report, a scouting service that provides recruiting information to colleges and universities. Follow him on Twitter @JuCorecruiting. Email Brad at email@example.com.