FSU signee headlines a star-studded prep team

HIGH POINT, N.C. - Montay Brandon took an elbow to the corner of his left eye in the first quarter of his game on Friday night, but did not let it knock him out.
The Florida State commitment returned to lead Wesleyan Christian Academy (High Point, N.C.) with 19 points and the Trojans to a 61-42 win over Rabun Gap School (N.C.) earlier this month.
"Once I came back in I was ready to cook," Brandon said. "I was ready to cook. Once I came back I was ready to eat. We needed this win. It was a conference game, so we needed this win."
He was eating his share, while feeding teammate Theo Pinson, The nation's No. 6 prospect in the Class of 2014.
At 6-foot-6, Brandon, rated as the nation's No. 59 prospect and the No. 11 point guard overall by, is able see the court better than most point guards. He displayed great vision when he connected with Pinson twice on electrifying alley-oops.
"In practice we're always on the same, so we're getting to know each other more after every game," Pinson said. "It's getting tighter and tighter, so once we've given that look you know just to throw it up to the rim and I'll go get it."
Wesleyan starts another elite player in its backcourt, sophomore point guard JaQuel Richmond along with Brandon, which makes the future Seminole's highlight-performance more impressive.
He averages 22 points per game, and his goal is to lead the Trojans to a state championship. Brandon said he has worked to improve his jump-shot, and added once he can consistently get it to go in that will make him difficult to defend.
"Montay has improved so much in the weight room, his passing ability," Wesleyan head coach Keith Gatlin said. "He can shoot it now. He can get to the rim. He's long, athletic. He's been a great leader for us."
Brandon looks forward to take that same versatility with him to Florida State. He said that he will start out in a point forward type of role, but head coach Leonard Hamilton wants him to eventually take on lead guard duties.
"Once I go there I'm going to do just what I do, normal," Brandon said. "I'm just a player. I really don't have a position like that. I just go out there and play."
Gatlin said that playing in Tallahassee is the perfect situation for Brandon. He said Hamilton likes size, which Brandon has for a guard, helping to enable him to be a facilitator.
Hamilton needs to hope Brandon can facilitate Pinson and Richmond to move in a direction that favors the Seminoles.
"I try, I try, because Theo, he's been a Duke fan since he's been little, so you know how that goes, but Quel [Richmond], I talk to Quel, because I definitely like playing with Quel," Brandon said. "I like playing with both of them, but if you can't get Theo I'd love to get Quel down at Florida State."
It does not seem to be rubbing off much with Pinson. However the 2014 stud said he is open to everybody. The Seminoles also appear to be a long shot for a commitment from Richmond, but still a greater chance than gaining a pledge from Pinson.
"The head coach of Florida State came to watch us over the summer," Richmond said. "He told me he could not really talk to me because he was the head coach and I was only a sophomore."
Brandon's efforts to recruit his teammates show his strong passion for the Noles, and his excitement to don the Garnet and Gold.
"I look ahead (to playing at Florida State) like every night, like I can't wait for the college life," Brandon said. "I was watching [the] ACC-Big Ten Challenge. I watched them on TV. I can't wait to be in that."
Every time he made nice play in Friday's win the Wesleyan student section chanted, "F-S-U."
He is not only going to take excitement down to Tallahassee with him, but as already indicated versatility, and improved scoring.
Brandon also displayed skill and determination in getting to the rim often forcing the defense to collapse in the lane, providing opportunities for him to find an open man or get to the free-throw line.
His toughness makes him an even bigger catch for the Seminoles.