Jamal Dart: Tank is rolling
Jamal Dart is probably the most underrated player that
played at Lincoln during the school's most successful stretch in recent years.
Together with Sebastian Telfair, Lincoln won the state championship during Dart's
senior year, and won the city championship during his junior year.
Dart made third team All-City (New York City) as a junior.
As a senior, he averaged 15 points per game with 10 rebounds. What makes his rebounding
statistic remarkable is that Dart is 6-3. His heart and extraordinary hustle is
what allows him to rebound the way he does.
When someone needed to step up in a PSAL semifinal game a year ago, Dart did,
putting up 20 points. In Lincon's March, 2003 overtime win over Christ the King
for the state Federation Class A championship, Dart grabbed 12 rebounds.
Dart's nickname is Tank. Because he's a guard who, when called upon, makes like
a tank and matches toughness with anyone, regardless of size. The kid's a natural
leader, and he leads by example.
Dart is currently enjoying a successful season at Notre Dame Prep. The next stop
is college. So far eight colleges are actively recruiting Jamal.
One scout described Dart this way: "He's a blue collar worker on the basketball
court. Nowdays, you don't have too many blue collar basketball players. You have
the superstars, or the guys that are not superstars. But he's in-between. He'll
give you 10 rebounds, four or five assists and score double-digit points."
Jamal often gets assigned to guard guys who are four or five inches taller than
him, yet he consistently does the job.
Dart listens to coaches. Actually listens, and responds.
One high school coach formerly involved with Dart described him this way: "Hard
player. Good student. Very respectable. Hard-nosed player. Plays hard, rebounds
very well. Good shooter."
How does Dart manage to consistently rebound so well over much bigger players?
"I think that's in his heart. He just wants to get it. I think he plays very hard,
an excellent shooter. He'll be a very good player for a good program."
The kid's next stop is a division one school, where he'll keep on doing what needs
to be done to earn wins.
Jamal Dart Interview
Jamal Dart is a 6-3 shooting guard at Lincoln Brooklyn
in New York City. Playing alongside Sebastian Telfair, he's enjoyed terrific success.
He scores in bunches, has range on his outside shot, and gets a ton of rebounds
for his position. InsideHoops.com met with Dart for an exclusive interview.
InsideHoops.com: Where'd you play when you were younger?
Jamal Dart: I played all over Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens, Bronx, Staten
InsideHoops.com: In high school, how much did you get to play in 9th grade?
Jamal Dart: In 9th grade, I played a lot. Even though I was a freshman,
at first I started. Then there was kind of thing where the coach wanted to see
someone, so he started him over me, but I still got more playing time than him
as a freshman.
InsideHoops.com: When did you transfer?
Jamal Dart: I transferred to Lincoln as a sophomore.
InsideHoops.com: Talk about your role on the team as a junior.
Jamal Dart: My role on the team as a junior I was like, three-point threat,
and offensive rebounding, helping the big guys rebound a lot.
InsideHoops.com: And winning championships, what was harder, what meant more?
Jamal Dart: We were more hyped for the state championship game than the
city, that's why it was pretty hard for us to win the city championship at Madison
Square Garden. But if we was more focused on the city than the state, we probably
would have won easily in the city and the state. We won anyway, but, it wasn't
that hard of a task more than we thought it was going to be. But we was very excited
to win the state.
InsideHoops.com: And as for recruiting, how early did colleges start talking to
you, and what have been your experiences been?
Jamal Dart: Yeah, I got a lot of calls, certain major colleges. They give
me a call once in a while, like once a week or whatever, sometimes two times,
three times a week...
InsideHoops.com: And what kind of things do they stress to you?
Jamal Dart: They would say things like, "We need you at our school, we
need another shooting threat..." Certain schools, instead of a two they look at
me as a one, and they want me to play the one for them. They think, like, I'm
a combo guard, so I can rebound and shoot, and I can run the point. So, whatever
they need me to play. Some schools want me to play the two, some wanted me to
play the one.
InsideHoops.com: Have you settled on a school?
Jamal Dart: No, not really. Not yet. I'll probably know by November where
I'm leaning to. November, early november, December, probably around that time.