Sports

January 31, 2013

Positioned to succeed: Indians' Todd thrives inside

Murray County basketball player Brady Todd is an undersized post surrounded by teammates who thrive on passing and shooting from the perimeter.

But because Todd is the team’s top option inside, the 6-foot-1-inch senior has to play bigger than his actual size.

While the Indians (12-10, 7-4 Region 7-2A) produce a lot of points through motion offense and 3-pointers, Todd leads the team by averaging 12.4 points per game and is second on the roster with five rebounds per game. He spends the majority of his time both on offense and defense inside the 3-point line going against opposing teams’ biggest athletes.

But while size has its benefits in the post, grabbing rebounds and making tough shots with tons of bodies and arms around him is all about positioning, Todd said.

“The main thing is you have to be able to use your body, get your body in position where they can’t get to the ball,” he added. “You also have to make contact. They’ll let you make contact, and that way you can keep them from blocking your shot.”

The key for Todd is working before ever getting the ball, or before the ball even crosses the half-court line. Todd often battles at the high post or closer to the basket, giving teammates someone to pass to.

“That’s half the battle,” he said. “If you can get in a good enough spot, it doesn’t matter how tall you are. ... You just have to beat them to the spot sometimes.”

Once he gets the ball, defenses converge and it leads to kick-outs and open 3-pointers for teammates like Jacob Sturgill, Martin Contreras and Dylan Woodard.

“Your post player has to have guys around him that he can trust,” said Murray County coach Greg Linder, who described Todd as “not your typical post player” because of his height.

“What we’re talking to him about is being an unselfish player. We do everything inside-out. He’s sort of the centerpiece. When he is being effective inside, he’s making great opportunities for himself and our outside shooters from the post.”

In each of the Indians’ nine games since the Christmas break, Todd has been in double digits for points and the Indians have won five of eight region games. With three games left, everyone is looking up at region leader Calhoun, but a second-place finish is available for the Indians, who finished last season with a losing record and missed out on the Class 3A state tourney.

“Last year, we didn’t have as much experience,” Todd said. “Especially as we’ve moved down to 2A, everyone wants to press. We’re able to handle it a lot easier. Everyone can handle the ball better. The experience is the main thing that has helped us out.”

He currently is the team’s leading scorer, averages around two assists per game and shoots nearly 50 percent from the field and 65 percent from the free-throw line. All of his offensive statistics are up from last season, when he averaged 10 points per game and received the team’s MVP award.

“What Brady has done a tremendous job of is his points-per-game average has increased,” Linder said. “It’s mainly because he’s gotten healthy. When the season started, he was still banged up from football. He had a high-ankle sprain. Ever since we came back from Christmas break, it’s almost like he’s been a different player.”

Todd, who was a two-way starter for the Indians on the football field this past season, doesn’t deny the physical play post players often get away with inside the 3-point line. He’s “used to it from football” but said the real pain comes when he steps in front of an oncoming opponent.

“Mostly when we get banged up is from taking charges,” Todd said.

Todd leads the team in that statistic, too, with 17 this season; he is also the second-leading rebounder behind Matthew Corbin. Those defensive contributions are additional ways he has been able to help Murray County this season even when opponents make stopping his scoring a priority.

“He’s the centerpiece to our defense, being in the middle of our matchup zone,” Linder said. “He did a real good job of dealing with guys who are bigger and stronger than he is.

“It all falls back to the same thing, and it’s being a smart player and understanding the importance of getting positioning. He reads the ball well coming off the rim. ... A lot of rebounding the basketball is ‘want-to.’ When the ball comes off the glass, he wants to go get it.”

In a home loss to Model earlier this month, he had 15 points by halftime and received much of the opponent’s attention, even when he didn’t have the ball.

“The last few weeks, especially as we’ve gone into the second rotation in the region, he’s gotten a lot more attention,” Linder said. “Against Pepperell a week ago, he had 15 points in the first half and started getting double-teamed in the second.”

Being shut down could aggravate anyone, and Todd is no exception.

“It gets rough,” he said, “but that’s a time when you have to step out and get in a different position.”

1
Text Only
Sports
  • SE fball conditioning 1 mlh.jpg Prep football: Raiders enter preseason hoping for breakthrough

    Entering his third year as Southeast Whitfield High School’s football coach, Sean Gray believes the last obstacle is belief.
    He believes this group of Raiders has that quality.

    July 28, 2014 2 Photos

  • Devin Golden: Other sports start practice this week

    Football isn’t the only high school sport during the fall — and the others are joining in this week.

    July 28, 2014

  • Three locals on NW team in state golf event

    Three local golfers — Hardin Chambless, Tori Owens and Landon Painter — played Sunday in round one of the Junior Sectional Challenge Match.

    July 28, 2014

  • DHS fball condition#1C0E6F8.jpg Prep football: Dalton enters camp well ahead of learning curve

    The joke came quick to the lips of Dalton High School football coach Matt Land when asked how the opening day of conditioning for the Catamounts went on Friday.
    “We can quit and go home,” Land said. “They have it all figured out.”

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hall of Fame Baseball_Chan.jpg Making a trip into town

    Frank Thomas was always driven to excel, and that sure served him well.
    “I was never that blue-chip prospect,” he said. “I had to outwork my opponents.”

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Hall of Fame Baseball_Chan2.jpg Chris Whitfield: Memories stay with us, and go with them

    I still remember the pandemonium that broke out in the dorm at Middle Georgia College in tiny Cochran, Ga., the night of “The Slide” in the 1992 National League Championship Series. It was a fire drill, wall street-buying frenzy and a Roman toga party all in one.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Deshawn Ruffin Sign#1C0E79A.jpg Dalton State College signs PG from Florida

    Dalton State College announced signing a Jacksonville, Fla., prep basketball standout to its men’s basketball team.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • DHS vs RHS fball xtra 7 mlh.jpg Totally focused on fútbol

    In order to chase his soccer dream and continue to mature and improve in the sport that he loves so much, Dalton High School athlete Eder Mora has decided to make a sacrifice — giving up football.

    July 26, 2014 2 Photos

  • Whitfield, Chris.JPG Chris Whitfield: Football fans may lose, but Mora will win with decision

    Throughout my career, I have been lucky enough to see some of the finest athletes this state has ever produced. From professional athletes who went on to the NFL, MLB and the NBA to college washouts who still rank as the finest high school athletes I have ever seen, I have been blessed.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • CHS fball conditioning 6 mlh.jpg Christian Heritage enters camp with many questions to answer

    In the first day of conditioning for local high school football teams, Christian Heritage coach Preston Poag didn’t decide any of the position battles that his team faces this year after losing a strong senior class.
    But there will be plenty of those battles to come.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

Devin Golden's sports updates
AP Video
13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage Virginia Governor Tours Tornado Aftermath Judge Faces Heat Over Offer to Help Migrant Kids Kangaroo Goes Missing in Oklahoma More M17 Bodies Return, Sanctions on Russia Grow Raw: Deadly Tornado Hits Virginia Campground Ohio State Marching Band Chief Fired After Probe Raw: Big Rig Stuck in Illinois Swamp