Faith Baptist Christian Academy’s Jaquez Motley signed a letter of intent June 22 to play basketball at Texas Southern University.
The standout point guard signed the letter at FBCA’s church. Motley reports to the Houston campus on July 8.
The opportunity to play for Texas Southern came when Motley showcased his talents this summer at the John Lucas basketball camp in Houston. Texas Southern’s new head basketball coach Keith LeGree spotted Motley and recognized him immediately.
“Coach Keith LeGree is from Statesboro,” Motley’s AAU coach Jessie Fleming said. “He has been watching Jaquez since he was in the eighth grade. When he found out he was still available, he called us and told us he needed him. He came in and watched Jaquez play in a game where he had an injury, and he was still able to shoot and put up about 16-17 points in that game. And the coach said that is what we need right there.”
Motley said he liked the educational programs at Texas Southern and thinks the school is the best place for him to showcase his basketball talent.
He said LeGree wants to keep him as a point guard, but he will have to work hard if he wants to start immediately. “l have to go down there and get some work in and earn the spot,” Motley said. “I plan to get there and work hard and do whatever I can to help the team out. I’m looking forward to it.”
Motley plans to study sports management.
Motley scored 1,915 points during his career at Faith Baptist. Last season he played in 33 games averaging 21.3 points per game for a total of 702 points. He had 129 assists, 121 total rebounds and 47 steals.
“Jaquez came here with a unique set of skills, both academically and athletically and what I have seen in these past few years is a maturity, a growth,” Faith Baptist coach Pastor Terry D. Sellars said.
Motley’s AAU coach Tico Brown, a former professional basketball player, said Motley can go far if he stays focused.
“It’s going to definitely get harder, but the thing about Jaquez is that he has never been the kid to shy away from hard work,” Brown said. “He has some things that you just can’t teach kids, heart, values and the intangibles … He’s got them. My advice to him is to continue down the path, because the path he has been leading is the right path.”
Fleming agrees, saying Texas Southern is the right fit for the young man.
“He can go in right away and hopefully he can help them win a conference championship and show he has always been a major player,” Fleming said. “This is big for him … Everybody doesn’t get that chance, and he got that chance to continue. Hopefully things will go well for him.”
Motley’s mother Vicky said it felt good to know her son is going to college. She said she wished the campus was a little closer, but she plans on going to games when Motley plays in Birmingham, South Carolina and Atlanta.
“And I will learn how to get to Houston as soon as possible,” she said. “I am proud of him. It’s been a long time coming and he deserves the best. I told him to keep in mind how he was raised and to place God first and keep the values instilled in his heart and he will make the right choices.”
Motley’s sister Monique said she will stay on her brother to complete his education.
“My best advice is to remind him to finish his studies and get his degree, and then you can move on, because even if you make it to the NBA you still need something to fall back on,” she said.
“I want to thank everybody that is here, Jessie my mom, coach Sellars coach Tico and my sister, because it has been tough,” Motley said. “I’ve been through injuries and times where I played bad but I kept trusting in myself and believing that God put this talent in me for a reason and I kept pushing forward. I’m ready for this next level.”