Two Tallassee basketball players have made their journey to the collegiate ranks official in the past two weeks.
Guard Jamicah Humphrey signed his letter of intent to Southern Union State Community College Friday, eight days after Tallassee guard Tae Collins signed his own LOI to Mississippi Delta Community College.
“He’s just a natural scorer,” Tallassee head coach Keiven Mixson said. “I’ve coached for 30 years. I’ve coached a lot of great players, college and high school. I don’t like ranking players, but he’s probably in the top 30, college and high school. He just has a knack for scoring.”
Humphrey led the way for the Tigers in scoring, averaging 22 points in the 2020-21 season. He piled up a career-high 53 points against Talladega. He earned third-team All-State honors as a junior and second-team All-State as a senior, scoring over 1,200 career points.
Mixson said he deserves to be talked about as one of the most accomplished Tallassee athletes of all time.
“The most effective part of his game is the pull-up jump shot,” Mixson said. “He can put it on the floor like he’s going to the hole, and he’s super quick. So when he puts it on the floor and you start backing up, he can pull up, and he can hit it any time he wants to.”
Things weren’t always smooth for Humphrey.
At the beginning of his senior campaign, Humphrey had one of his worst career games against Stanhope Elmore, and Mixson said the Mustangs’ fans let him know about it. His shots weren’t falling.
Humphrey attributed his issues to a lack of focus.
“I was being selfish,” Humphrey said. “I needed to lead more on my team and keep them going. If I’m doing good, I know they’re gonna do good, because they’re looking at me.”
Humphrey took his shortcomings from that contest and used them as motivation to improve his craft.
Mixson called Humphrey a “gym rat” while presenting the player Friday, and added it showed in the way he finished his season.
“When his shot wasn’t falling early in the year, you’d see him in the gym at 6 o’clock in the morning, staying after practice, shooting on the weekend,” Mixson said. “He’s just a grinder.”
With his high school success leading to a college scholarship, Humphrey chose Southern Union due to his relationship with head coach Ron Radford.
Radford found out about Humphrey while watching former Tallassee and current Southern Union forward Tyrek Turner. He saw Humphrey playing in the game and asked Mixson for more information.
“He’s been giving me attention since I was in the 11th grade,” Humphrey said. “He was coming to see Tyrek, and he’d seen me a couple of times and was asking about me.”
Mixson said the ability to see better competition at Southern Union will be key for Humphrey’s development.
While he strikes the balance between athletics, education and college life, Humphrey will be working toward higher ambitions. He hopes to sign a D-1 scholarship before his collegiate career is over.
“I’m just there at Southern Union temporarily,” Humphrey said. “Can’t get comfortable.”
Mixson said with his abilities as a scorer and work ethic, he could arrive at that level within a few seasons.