Media Information Director
DPS Office of Athletics
With his team a man down in its boys’ basketball nonleague opener last Saturday against Birmingham Detroit Country Day, King High’s Malik Albert seized the challenge as his opportunity to man up.
Standing tall at both ends of the court, Albert scored 29 points with five rebounds and four blocks to lead a 60-58 victory and has been named the Detroit Public League Proud Strong Learner of the Week.
“Malik has kind of taken the team on his shoulders, especially last Saturday when we were without (point guard) Dennis Norfleet who was on a recruiting visit for football,’’ King coach Pierre Brooks said. “He did a great job stepping up in a big game for us, not just offensively, but he had a strong game on defense against Country Day’s Jodan Price, one of the top-ranked players in the state.”
Albert may not yet have the notoriety of some others, but the Crusaders’ 6-3 senior guard and co-captain is drawing increasing interest from college recruiters.
“A lot of Division 1 schools are looking at him as a player who could help their team,’’ Brooks said. “He’s really dedicated himself in the classroom. This past card marking, he had a 2.8 grade point average and he’s just an outstanding young man in terms of doing the right things. I’m really looking for him to have a big season.”
Albert named Duquense, Detroit-Mercy, Temple, Eastern Michigan and Cleveland State as some of the schools that have made contact with him, but he isn’t close to settling on a choice.
“My goal this year is to help us win a state championship,’’ he said. “We’ve got a good team and a good thing going. We can make it happen.”
Albert also hopes to be in the running for the Mr. PSL and the state’s Mr. Basketball award. His strong suits are his abilities to drive to the basket and play above the rim.
“Malik does everything,” Brooks said. “He’s our best rebounder, our best scorer, a great passer and every game we look for him to do great things from an all-around perspective.”
“More than anything, I enjoy dunking,’’ Albert said.
Albert unleashed his total package last Saturday in leading the Crusaders past a highly-ranked foe.
“I knew I had to get more involved without Norfleet being in the lineup,’’ Albert said. “I scored and I played good defense against one of the state’s best players. With the confidence my coaches have in me, I feel I can guard anybody and score against anybody.”
The Detroit Public School League Proud Strong Learner of the Week Award is representative of the league’s top boys’ and girls’ athletic performers and is sponsored by local Detroit area McDonald’s owner-operators