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Tuesday, May 11, 2021

Men’s basketball picks up new recruit

California Community College Basketball Co-Player of the Year DeAndre Dickson will transfer to Western this fall to be part of Western’s Men’s Basketball team.

Western head coach Tony Dominguez described DeAndre Dickson as one of the most versatile players the team has ever recruited.

“He’s truly one of the best players in the country in his division,” Dominguez said. The coaches are expecting Dickson to have a major impact on the team, and be a starter to play the center or power forward position.

Dickson previously played for Bakersfield College, where he averaged 18.0 points, 12.1 rebounds and 2.2 blocks per game, and shot 52.6 percent from the field and was a 75.5 percent free throw shooter. 

“He’s a quiet leader in a sense that he will speak up when need be.”

Richard Hughes, head coach at Bakersfield College

Dominguez said he thinks Dickson will have an impact on both ends of the court. On the defensive side, he has block shots and rebounds and will be a real force, Dominguez said. Offensively, he’s skilled enough to play many different positions, he said.

“He is just so versatile, he can do a lot of different things,” Dominguez said. “So it depends on how our team shapes together and figure out where we need to start him at.”

Richard Hughes, head coach at Bakersfield College, said Dickson is low maintenance, family oriented and unselfish.

“From a coaching standpoint, he’s very easy to manage. He does what you ask him and never complains,” Hughes said. “He’s a quiet leader in a sense that he will speak up when need be. Otherwise he goes about his business and leads by example. But when things go south, as they do with teams, he’s the first person to raise his voice and get guys to dial back in.”

Dickson is from Fresno, California, but attended school at Bakersfield College.

“I really love the sport and the opportunity basketball gives you,” Dickson said. “For me, I’m getting a full scholarship, so basketball is helping me get an education.”

Dickson is the first in his family to attend college, he said. Dickson hopes he is showing his younger siblings that college is do-able and paving the way for them, he said. 

One of Dickson’s biggest accomplishments will be earning his associate’s degree from Bakersfield this summer, he said.

The coaches Dickson has worked with throughout his career have helped him a lot, he said. He is still in contact with his high school coach and Hughes helped him throughout the recruiting process.

Dickson said he  looks forward to new experiences, such as competing against different teams, playing with his new teammates and meeting people.

Dickson has visited Western and toured the campus. The green environment of the Pacific Northwest caught his attention, because it’s different from what he is used to, he said.

While at Western, Dickson said he wants to learn as much as possible, make whatever contribution he can to the basketball program and graduate. After achieving those goals, he said he would like to play professionally.

“I think that it’s a possibility, and that the coaches at Western will help me get that, but that will come with working hard,” Dickson said.

Dickson has yet to decide what he wants to study at Western.

“I’m stuck in the middle of something involving sports medicine and business,” he said.

The team has five new recruits for the fall: Logan Schilder, Bellingham, Washington; Siaan Rojas, Concord, California; Taylor Stafford, Chicago, Illinois; Daulton Hommes, Lynden, Washington; and Trevor Jasinsky, Camas, Washington, according to WWU Vikings sports press release. 

Dominguez thinks that top athletes from outside Washington are attracted to Western because of the long-standing tradition and developed culture within the basketball program, he said.

“I’ve been coaching here at Western for almost 22 years, and I think we’ve developed a culture where we’re not only trying to win basketball games, but we’re trying to develop [the players] into men, and getting them graduated and help them be successful in life. And basketball is a vehicle that we use,” Dominguez said.

Western’s basketball season will tip off Friday, November 11 at the Pioneer Challenge in Hayward, California.

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