Ex-Cleveland Hoops Star Curry To Play Senior Year At Connecticut School

Helped AAU Team Capture AAU National Championship

Saturday, August 19, 2017 - by Larry Fleming

Ikcaven "KK" Curry, one of the most talented prep basketball players in Tennessee, has left Cleveland High School to play his senior year at the St. Thomas More School in Oakdale, Connecticut.

The 6-foot-5 forward said he will fly to Connecticut next Saturday and move into his dormitory on the 26th. Classes begin Wednesday.

“It’s a better opportunity for me academically and on the court and I believe I can go further and have a better chance of playing Division I basketball,” Curry said.

“Their coach (Jere Quinn) has been there for 30-plus years.

The former Cleveland standout also considered the Quality Education Academy in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, but decided on St. Thomas More after speaking with his mother, Stameshia Curry, and AAU coach.

“I really wanted a better opportunity for him academically speaking,” Stameshia Curry said. “This is my boy. What made him want to go there is me. It’s the best opportunity for him. KK is excited about going to St. Thomas More. He’s going to miss his Raider family, but he’s looking forward to his new journey and adventure. It’s going to be for nine months and they will prepare him for college.”

Rumors were flying in June that Curry, rated the state’s No. 11 high school prospect for 2018, would leave Cleveland High, along with several other Blue Raider players.

However, Curry’s mother shot down the rumors, saying: “Ever since he was a sophomore private schools and academies have wanted him to come play for them. I know he’s a good basketball player with a lot of talent and ability, but I’m his mom. I graduated from Cleveland High School and I haven’t looked at any private schools or academies and I want this (rumors) to stop.

“I don’t plan on pulling my sons out of Cleveland High School. If he does leave, I will tell the coaches and call you.”

Tray Curry, a 6-foot-3 dual sport star at Cleveland Middle School, is now enrolled at Bradley Central High School. He was on the field Friday night when the Bears’ football team lost a season-opening game to defending Class 5A champion Farragut 27-21 in overtime.

“Tray told me in the seventh grade he wanted to go to Bradley, but I thought it was just talk,” Stameshia Curry said Saturday. “Knoxville Webb was also in the picture, but he wanted to go to Bradley.

“In fact, Tray (he is 13 years old) was supposed to go to Washington (state) Friday to participate in an Under Armour Top 24 event, but he didn’t want to miss his first football game with Bradley. He’s played football and basketball for a long time and really loves football.

KK Curry led the Blue Raiders to the District 5-3A regular season and tournament titles this past season. Cleveland, which won 11 of 12 league games, was upset in the Region 3-3A semifinals and finished the season with a 25-4 record. Curry earned all-district honors and took home the Region tournament MVP award.

The former Cleveland standout enjoyed a successful AAU season during the summer, helping his 17-Under Team NLP capture an AAU national championship in July. The game was televised by ESPN. Curry’s former Cleveland teammate, Dionte Ware, also played on the AAU team.

With solid performances throughout the AAU season, Curry’s college recruiting stock started to rise. Last month Curry had received college offers from Middle Tennessee State, East Tennessee State, South Alabama, Alabama-Birmingham and UT-Chattanooga.

“The national title was a good feeling,” he said. “It was great to win it with that team because we’ve played together for three years.”

Curry has not visited the Connecticut school, but has talked extensively to the Chancellors’ coaches, as has his mother.

The final decision for Curry on St. Thomas More was made “about a month ago,” said both Curry and his mom, who is a graduate of Cleveland High School.

“It was a last-minute thing really,” Curry said. “Mom felt it was the best thing for me to do. I haven’t had the chance to talk to my Cleveland teammates about me leaving.”

St. Thomas More opened as an all-boys preparatory school in 1962 with 62 students, eight faculty members on a 100-acre tract of land on the shores of Gardner Lake, due east of Norwich.

A website says the school is “steeped in the Jesuit tradition of educating the student intellectually, morally, socially and physically.”

The school has an enrollment of about 130 with an average class size of 10 students and a yearly tuition of $53,900.

Back in June, Chattanoogan.com confirmed Norance Berry was leaving the Blue Raiders’ program and had already enrolled at The Christ School in Arden, North Carolina. The move was verified by Cleveland coach Jason McCowan and Berry’s mother, Lakema Nalory.

Berry’s younger brother, Quante, a freshman this year, is attending Tennessee Christian Preparatory School in Cleveland.

Two other Cleveland players have also enrolled at other schools. Taye Cobb is at Bradley Central and Desmond Simpson is attending Blackman High School in Murfreesboro.

(Contact Larry Fleming at larryfleming44@gmail.com and on Twitter @larryfleming44)

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