Down to the wire, Baker earns shot to play college hoops

Tre Baker wasn’t sure if he was going to get his shot to play college basketball. The situation the Navarre graduate faced heading into the summer was similar to having the ball in your hands with five seconds to play and your team is down two.

“I wasn’t sure if it was going to happen,” Baker said. “I didn’t find out I was going to get to play until about two weeks ago.”

The school Baker found was Mitchell College, an NCAA Division III school in Connecticut. To say a huge weight is off his shoulders would be an understatement.

“In the end it all worked out,” Baker said. “I’m excited. A lot of time went into finding a school. I was up all night with my parents searching for schools. Finding the best fit took time.”

Baker credited teammate Zamir Jones for helping him land an opportunity as well.

Jones, headed to the Northeast also to play at Eastern Nazarene College, mentioned Baker to the coaching staff at Mitchell.

Baker played a pivotal role for the Raiders this past season, helping Navarre win a school-record 17 games and reach the regional tournament for the first time in more than a decade.

“I owe a lot to coach (Taf) Bentley,” Baker said. “He helped teach me a lot about the game and I wouldn’t be here without his help.”

Living in the North will be an adjustment but Baker plans to combat the cold weather by “bringing a lot of jackets” with him.

In terms of adjusting to life as a college basketball player, he’s expended the effort to prepare himself for the next level.

Read more  in the Aug. 18 edition of Navarre Press or subscribe online here.

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