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Chuck Landon: Woodson best served right here with Herd

May. 23, 2013 @ 12:50 AM

So, Dominic Woodson is choosing between Memphis and Marshall?

Then, what's the hold up?

It's an easy decision.

In this particular scenario, Marshall should be the clear-cut choice for the 6-foot-10, 280-pound Huntington Prep standout.

It's as obvious as his appetite.

Just consider the circumstances.

Marshall lost its top three inside players from last season in starting center Nigel Spikes, starting power forward Dennis Tinnon and backup center Rob Goff. That means the Herd desperately needs an inside scoring presence.

Sure, Marshall has signed junior college transfer Cheikh Sane from Snow University. But the 6-9 center from Senegal is a wispy 217 pounds, and is more of a defender and rebounder than scorer. Sane averaged 10.4 points and 9.0 rebounds last season.

The Herd's other incumbent big men are 7-2 senior Yous Mbao and 6-9 junior J.P. Kambola. Mbao has scored a total of only 15 points in two seasons at Marshall, while Kambola's career scoring stands at a meager 10 points.

Get my drift?

Woodson would be an impact player for Marshall. The native of Round Rock, Texas, who incidentally has a physique resembling the name of his hometown, would provide an immediate low-post presence both offensively and on the boards.

But that's not all.

With his skill set, Woodson also would give Marshall the option of running some high-post sets. According to scouting reports, he possesses the passing skills to hit cutters driving to the basket and also is adept at hitting the high-post jump shot.

The bottom line is Woodson would start immediately for Marshall.

So, what's not to like?

Then, there's Memphis.

The Tigers don't utilize post players, offensively. They play a four-out, one-in offense that is perimeter oriented.

Why do you suppose 6-9 Tarik Black recently departed to become a graduate transfer at Kansas? It's because he got tired of never touching the ball unless he grabbed an offensive rebound.

Besides that, Memphis' starting center last season was 6-9 true freshman Shaq Goodwin, who started 33 games but averaged only 7.4 points. And the Tigers also signed 6-8 power forward Austin Nichols, who was a five-star recruit.

So, what's to like?

Woodson would have to battle for minutes and shots at Memphis compared to starting immediately at Marshall and being the Herd's primary low-post presence.

I know lawyers who couldn't make a more convincing argument.

Then, of course, there's the Huntington factor. Woodson has spent the last year in our city, playing for Huntington Prep and attending St. Joseph High School. He likes it here and says so.

"Definitely, it's home," Woodson told The Herald-Dispatch sportswriter Grant Traylor. "This is like my second home. Whatever situation I feel comfortable in, that's where I want to be. I'm comfortable here."

He knows how to get around town. He knows where the restaurants are. He has a support system already in place. He could move his belongings in about an hour. And he probably has a girlfriend or three here.

Talk about being in your comfort zone.

The world isn't exactly designed for anyone standing 6-10 and weighing 280 pounds, but right here in Huntington is about as comfortable as Woodson is going to get.

Are you listening, Dom?

Chuck Landon is a sports columnist for The Herald-Dispatch. Contact him at 304-526-2827 or clandon@herald-dispatch.com.



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