Gradey Dick went into a Shocker basketball camp run by Gregg Marshall on Saturday with the expectation of being tutored by a well-respected Division I coach for a couple of hours.
The Collegiate sophomore-to-be and 2022 prospect ended up taking away his first Division I scholarship offer.
For a Wichita native who has been to Koch Arena and grown up watching Marshall and the Shockers, to have the first offer be from WSU was special.
“I’m extremely happy because it is my hometown team,” Dick told The Eagle. “I actually got to meet coach Marshall (at the camp) and all of the assistant coaches got to see me play. I got a lot of 1-on-1 time with them. I was kind of surprised they offered. This is my first one, so this is all pretty new to me. I’m really happy, though.”
Dick, a 6-foot-5 wing, led Collegiate in scoring last season as a freshman and scored 31 points in a sub-state championship game loss to Kingman. He received an invitation from the USA Basketball U16 National Team and made the first cut down to 18 players, but did not make the final roster. He also has been a standout playing for KC Run GMC on the Under Armour summer circuit.
While Dick had yet to receive an offer yet, his recruiting interest has taken off in the last year and he has heard from several high-major programs. His growth spurt to 6-5 has made him an intriguing prospect since he grew up playing guard, as he has retained his ball-handling and shooting skills.
“When I first started playing basketball, all I wanted to be was a shooter,” Dick said. “The past couple of years, I’ve started to upgrade my jumping ability and now I can finish above the rim, which has been a big advantage to my game. I’m kind of an all-around player now, I feel like. I can still shoot it, but now I can pump fake and put it on the ground and finish above the rim.”
At WSU’s high intensity camp on Saturday, Dick participated in drills in front of Marshall, his assistant coaches and a handful of current WSU players. He also scrimmaged in 3-on-3 and 5-on-5 settings.
WSU coaches have long shown interest, but after watching Dick in person on Saturday, Marshall saw enough to offer a scholarship. Being the first to offer can have its benefits and Dick said he appreciated that WSU believed in him already.
But by far the biggest impression for Dick was meeting Marshall in person. He’s seen him coach on television and seen interviews, but Saturday was the first time being able to see Marshall in his element on the practice court and away from the cameras.
“I was really, really impressed,” Dick said of Marshall. “He’s very classy and very sharp. That was the first time a collegiate head coach has talked to me, so I was really pleased. I got to see his style and I know he can be a really intense coach, but that’s what makes you better... obviously with what he’s been able to do with the Shockers.”
The Shockers will look vastly different in 2022 when Dick graduates and chooses a college. The only players who could be projected to still be on the team is the current incoming freshman class of Tyson Etienne, Noah Fernandes, DeAntoni Gordon and Grant Sherfield (who would be seniors) and whichever sophomore center takes a redshirt season this year between Isaiah Poor Bear-Chandler and Morris Udeze.