Former Brawley star Lofton to play at William Penn University

June 09, 2001|By CHRIS GRANT, Sports Editor

Former Brawley Union High School basketball standout Jermaine Lofton recently committed to play basketball at William Penn University in Oskaloosa, Iowa.

"The coaches told me it was a good school," said Lofton. "They lost their whole team to graduation so I decided to go help them out."

The 6-foot-6-inch Lofton played the past two seasons for San Diego Mesa College. Last season he averaged 8.9 points and 8.5 rebounds while helping Mesa to a 19-10 record. Lofton thinks it was the time spent in San Diego has helped him move on to William Penn, which competes at the NAIA level.

"It helped out a lot," he said. "In the summer I played against bigger, stronger guys and it got me better."


Lofton considers the chance to play college basketball a dream come true. He hopes to contribute immediately to a team that went 6-18 last year.

"I just want to be a role player and have the guys who've been there show me what to do," Lofton added. "I'd like to step in take over somebody's spot."

Lofton, who will be joined at William Penn by former Imperial Valley College basketball player Winston Young, also is going to play for the Statesmen's baseball team. Lofton was a pitcher at Brawley, but has not played since he graduated from high school. He thinks playing two sports will give him a better chance at advancing in one

"It's something to fall back on," he added. "I'm just going to try it out."

While at William Penn Lofton will pursue a degree in physical education or liberal studies. He remains undecided about his major, but is certain about where he wants to go in the future.

Said Lofton, "I'd like to try and have two good years and then see if I can make it in some professional league."

For now the former Wildcat is looking forward to a summer of hard work as he prepares for the season.

"I'm working hard," he said. "I have to get on the weights and try to improve my jump shot because I'll need it next year."

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