College Basketball: K.J. Sherrill headed to Augusta State with little brother
By Ronnie Gallagher
MOUNT ULLA — Thank goodness for little brother.
That is the silver lining for K.J. Sherrill as he plans for his senior year of college basketball.
After announcing he was transferring from Charlotte in the spring, he has decided to join brother Keshun at Division II Augusta State in Augusta, Ga.
Sherrill said he will redshirt next season and get on the court when Keshun is a sophomore.
Keshun, who will be a true freshman at Augusta State, followed the same path as his older brother at West Rowan. Each was the Rowan County Player of the Year and each played in the East-West All-Star game. They both eclipsed 1,000 career points.
They even played one year together at West during K.J.’s senior season in 2009 under Mike Gurley.
Now, it’s deja-vu.
“First of all, I want to play with my little brother one more time,” Sherrill said.
The 6-foot-7 power forward said he held off announcing his next stop because he was waiting on Keshun to sign. Augusta State is coached by Dip Metress, college roommate of Gurley when those two played at Belmont-Abbey.
A redshirt year is good, Sherrill said, because he is still rehabbing an injured knee. He also had a broken arm during his stay at Charlotte.
“I’m going to keep rehabbing until my knee and my body are back to 100 percent,” he said.
Playing time was the main reason Sherrill left the 49ers. Sherrill was recruited by Bobby Lutz but he said the minutes dwindled once Alan Major took over.
“Nothing against the coaches, I just felt like they didn’t give me the opportunity I deserved,” he said.
But against LaSalle, he pumped in 24 points and grabbed 13 rebounds.
“I thought the coaches would realize I should be on the court,” he said. “It just didn’t work out.”
Sherrill said Major called him in after the 13-17 season.
“He asked me if I wanted to stay. I talked to my parents and Coach Gurley. I’m going to Augusta.”
Gurley said Sherrill had Division I schools interested.
“But with one year of eligibility left, he had to hit a home run,” Gurley said. “He needs to go somewhere where he knows he can be successful. Dropping down a level is a good thing in this case.
“I think he’s making a very good decision. Dip knows how important this senior year is going to be for K.J.”
Sherrill went on his little brother’s official visit and was impressed with the school.
“I didn’t think it would be as good as it was,” he said. “It was just like Charlotte, basically.”
One thing Sherrill will miss is playing in Halton Arena.
“When we played the big games, the atmosphere was great,” he said. “I’m going to miss that.”
He’ll also miss the Atlantic 10 trips and the competition, but most of all, his teammates.
“I came in with all my friends and I got close to everybody there,” Sherrill said. “It’s a good league and they treat you real nice. But I know Augusta State will treat me 10 times better.”
It was hard to tell who was happier with the choice, K.J. or Keshun.
“To me, it’s a blessing,” Keshun beamed. “Most people don’t get to play with their older brother. It’s going to be just like high school.”