FORMER NCHSAA STATE CHAMPIONSHIP MVP PLAYS KEY ROLE IN NCAA TOURNAMENT
One of the outstanding players on one of the men’s teams in the NCAA Sweet Sixteen is a former Most Valuable Player in the North Carolina High School Athletic Association state championships.
Darius Johnson-Odom now plays for Marquette University and will lead his team into a battle with seventh-seeded Florida on Thursday at 10:17 pm in the West Regional. He was a first team all-Big East selection this year.
Johnson-Odom is averaging 18.5 points per game, 3.5 rebounds and 2.8 assists as the Golden Eagles have posted a 27-7 record. He is shooting 45.1 percent from the floor and 38.9 percent from the three-point line while leading Marquette in scoring. He has been the Golden Eagles’ top scorer in 20 games this season, including sharing that top spot with 17 points in the 62-53 victory over Murray State that propelled Marquette into the NCAA Sweet Sixteen.
Johnson-Odom was the Most Valuable Player in the NCHSAA 4-A championship in 2006 as Wakefield nipped North Mecklenburg 45-43. He scored 16 points for the Wolverines.
A basket by Scott Brooks with seven seconds left was the margin of victory as Wakefield (27-4) won its second state crown in three years and denied North Meck (23-7) back-to-back titles. Wake Forest-bound Jamie Skeen of North led all scorers with 20 points and nine boards. The score was tied five times and there were 13 lead changes.