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Burrows key to Cats' transition

Senior point guard is voice of experience for youthful squad

November 25, 2010|By Gabriel Rizk,

As a point guard, Eddie Burrows has essentially been running the show for the Renaissance Academy boys' basketball team since first breaking into the starting lineup last season.

Its just that last year there was so much star power taking center stage for the Wildcats, Burrows may have felt like a man behind the scenes.

Burrows will be hard to miss this season, as he comes into his own as the leader of the team and tries to put the Wildcats on his shoulders for an encore playoff run.


"I'm used to being a leader," Burrows says. "It's more responsibility now that the seniors left and I'm the only senior remaining, but it doesn't feel different.

"My mom really taught me to be a leader, not a follower. Everywhere I go, I take that with me."

Last season, there wasn't much that didn't go through the All-CIF senior triumvirate of Gil Tacita, Bryan Bourgeoise and Dushon Carter and behind their scoring prowess the team went far — all the way to the CIF Southern Section Division V-A semifinals.

Burrows is the only senior returner from that team and one of only a small handful of players with any real varsity experience to speak of. As a result, the Wildcats will depend on Burrows to not only keep the offense clicking, but to use his experience to be an effective leader and role model.

"He's a great leader," says teammate Troy Fontinilla, one of a handful of returners, who will also be taking on a bigger role this season. "He leads us on the court and the team goes as he does. His intensity, we try to match it.

"He's definitely a great role model. Everybody looks up to him, everybody learns something from him."

Burrows admits that he and Wildcats Coach Sid Cooke didn't always see eye to eye during his junior season. A big part of Burrows' development during a productive offseason of workouts, practices and summer basketball has been his willingness to adapt to a role that goes beyond playmaking.

"He's really experienced and he's really starting to listen," Cooke says. "We kind of butted heads last year, but I need him to control tempo and he's starting to do it. He's starting to get a lot of steals. He basically gives us that relief with his speed, when we need someone to break the pressure, cut through a double team or when we need someone to get us out of trouble.

"He's learning how to control things, how to really run a pick and roll better than last year. He's a little bit stronger and a little bit quicker. Speedwise, I don't think you're going to see anyone quicker."

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