By RENALDO DORSETT
Tribune Sports Reporter
SHAMAR Burrows will continue his collegiate career with a new programme and looks to make an immediate impact when he returns to the court next fall.
Burrows signed his letter of intent to join the Dalhousie Tigers for year two of U Sports play.
In his first year, Burrows stepped into a lead role for the Wilfred Laurier Golden Hawks and was awarded the team's Rookie of the Year for his performance over the season.
Despite a standout year where he averaged 6.2 points, 5.2 rebounds and 1.4 steals while, Burrows said he chose to pursue a better opportunity with a new programme.
"My coaches, parents and I came to the decision that I wanted to go in a different direction with a new university. I went out and did my research, coaches were contacting me, Dalhousie was one of the schools I went to and I had a great time, great visit it was a great experience with the team and the coaching staff," Burrows said. "I was able to get into my programme, majoring in economics with a minor in commerce. I had colleges and universities all across Canada contacting me and I was happy for that because I had options, but I knew what I was looking for and I was able to find that at Dalhousie."
The 6'3", 200-pound guard said he intends to improve his game as he sits out this season due to transfer rules but looks to become a perfect fit into the Tigers' system.
"I watched their playing style, they are a fast tempo team and great with their on-the-ball defence. They have a free flowing offence and run their sets out of a motion offence but they like to move the ball and the ball isn't dominant in one spot," he said. "For me personally this year I want to be more of a combo guard. I want to be able to grab my rebounds, distribute the ball, I want to shoot the ball better coming off picks and pulling up off the dribble and become better in transition so I want to become more versatile. My shot has been a weakness in the past but I've worked on making it a strength over the last three years and I'm always looking to improve."
The dynamic point guard committed to Wilfred Laurier out of Ridley College in Ontario, Canada where he led the programme to an unprecedented nationally ranked status.
Burrows helped the Tigers to highlight their season by claiming the Canadian Independent Schools Athletic Association championship and ended an impressive run of success by the St Michael's College Blue.
He also helped lead the talented Tigers team to several tournaments wins in his senior season including the Dorland Tournament, Standard Tournament, CAIS Championship, The Can-Am Shootout and the Crusader Classic hosted in Grand Bahama over the winter holiday.
A product of Noble Prep Academy, Burrows and Livingston Bromwell began to rewrite Ridley history in the 2014 season when they helped to lead the Tigers to their first provincial title in school history - the Ontario Federation of School Athletic Association's Class A boys basketball championship. They are also both beneficiaries of the exchange programme between NPA and Ridley College.
NPA Director, Geno Bullard, has coached Burrows since the primary school level and said his development as a person and a player makes him a model student-athlete who has charted a path for others to follow.
"His growth has been amazing to me. To see where he's at right now, to be in full control of himself as a businessman and to be able to take his career into his own hands has truly been a blessing. He has done tremendous things at NPA, tremendous things at Ridley College and in his year at Laurier. He has put in the necessary steps coaches are looking for so for any coach scouting him they have no doubt of what he can bring to their programme because of the great reviews he has had at every step of his career," he said. "This is the type of student athlete we should be promoting. He carries himself well, his grade point average is well above 3.0 and we should show athletes like him as an example of what future student athletes should be trying to emulate."
Located in Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, Dalhousie University is a member of the Atlantic University Sport, a collegiate athletic conference for universities in the region. The AUS, which covers Canada east of Quebec is one of four such bodies that are members of the country's governing body for university athletics, U Sports. The other three regional associations coordinating university-level sports in Canada are Ontario University Athletics (OUA), the Canada West Universities Athletic Association (CWUAA), and Réseau du sport étudiant du Québec (RSEQ).