Cotton Signs On With Central Methodist
Trenton High School senior Cassidy Cotton is not near done playing basketball. With half of her senior high school season still remaining, Cotton guaranteed herself even more playing days, signing a national letter of intent to continue her basketball career with Central Methodist University following her graduation. Cotton signed the letter Monday afternoon in the THS commons.
For Cotton, the choice came down to familiarity with CMU Head Coach James Arnold, who coached the North Central Missouri College Lady Pirates’ basketball team in the 2000’s. Arnold spent five years at NCMC and was the head coach for the Lady Pirates for four of those seasons. Arnold helped NCMC to two Region 16 championships and led the 2006-2007 Lady Pirates to a sixth-place finish in the NJCAA Division II National Tournament.
“Well, when I was little I watched James coach at NCMC and I liked the way he coached,” Cotton said. “I saw Amber (Vandevender) play for him and I heard she loved him as a coach, so that got me really excited to go to CMU.”
The match isn’t just a good one for Cotton. Arnold is looking forward to bringing the Lady Bulldog onto his roster and sees a bright future at the college level for Cotton.
“We are pretty excited about Cass because I have been able to see her grow over the years,” Arnold said. “I have been able to come back and watch her play and she is a hard-nosed guard who can play multiple positions. She can score from the outside, but she also has the ability to slash a little bit. The fact that she has played a little bit out of position at times for Trenton in the post will be valuable for us because it just allows her to be that much more flexible, especially defensively. Any time you have a player who can make multiple switches on the defensive end and guard from two’s to maybe under-sized four’s it’s going to be extremely beneficial.”
Cotton will definitely bring a lot to Central Methodist on the floor, but Trenton Head Coach Brian Upton points out there is a lot more to Cotton than just talent on the court.
“Basketball-wise Cass is a solid all-around player,” Upton said. “She is an excellent shooter, she understands the game, has a high basketball IQ, really understands the value of teamwork and hard work and that is probably the lesser of her qualities. The best quality is that she is a great kid and a great student. She is a good leader on the floor, she is a good leader in practice and she is a good leader in the locker room. I think all of those traits will transfer real well to college basketball.”
At Central Methodist, Cotton will join a team on the rise in the NAIA’s Heart Of America Athletic Conference. CMU began the 2012-2013 season with a 16-1 record, the best start in school history. CMU finished that season with a 25-8 record, the second highest season winning percentage in Lady Eagles history. CMU is off to an 8-3 start this season.
“Hopefully I can work hard and try to see a little bit of time on the court next year,” Cotton said. “Hopefully, as I keep moving forward, I continue seeing more time and keep the program going good.”
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