Bell County senior guard Tyler Potter will be joining the Lincoln Memorial University basketball team as a preferred walk-on. The arrangement was announced on Wednesday at the high school.
“It’s definitely a blessing and an opportunity that a lot of people don’t get in their lifetime. It’s an educational opportunity, too, and hopefully everything will work out,” Potter said.
The 5-foot-10 guard averaged about 20 points and five rebounds per game to lead the Bobcats as they won the 52nd District title and advanced to the 13th Region semifinals this past season.
He’s a three-year starter at Bell County long known for his 3-point shooting. With improved athleticism over the last two seasons, Potter took on more ball-handling responsibilities and took his game to another level by developing an ability to create his own shot and take the ball to the rim.
“Tyler has been a joy to coach here at Bell County. He’s one of those kids that have really worked hard, dedicated himself and put a lot of time in,” Bobcat coach Lewis Morris said. “I think he can go over to LMU and they’re going to fall in love with him just because he works so hard. I’m glad he’s got the opportunity to go over there and play ball and I think he’s going to do a good job there.”
Lincoln Memorial has grown to one of the top programs in Division two under the direction of head coach Josh Schertz. The Railsplitters have made four straight NCAA Tournament appearances with three consecutive appearances in the round of 32.
Last season the team team went 28-3 and won the South Atlantic Conference regular season and tournament championships. Along the way they were ranked in every NABC/Division II national poll of the season, extending a streak to 58 consecutive weeks in the top 25.
“I’m looking forward to competing out there with some guys that are great players. It’s a great honor to have the chance to play with those guys and make myself better as a player,” Potter said. “I’ll probably be redshirting my freshman year. But they said it’s an equal opportunity place as far as playing time goes if you prove yourself.”
Potter added that he glad to be going to college close to home and said the process of getting invited as a preferred walk-on started by getting to know the coaching staff through camps.
“It just starts from playing ball and going to camps. The coaches start talking to you and it leads to more and more,” he said. “It’s something I want to try just for the love of basketball.”