Aaron Burton: A Well Kept Secret
By Joseph Santoliquito
Philadelphia, PA (CBS)—On occasion, there is a player that slips through the cracks of the talent-rich Philadelphia area. This season there seems to be a few sleepers out there that should merit more college interest than they’re receiving, and that could change in the case of one player.
Aaron Burton quietly, though very productively, enjoyed a super season for Cheltenham this season, averaging a double-double by scoring 17 points and grabbing almost 11 rebounds a game.
Not bad for a 6-foot-1 senior guard with scoring ability who’s gradually gaining attention from Division I and II schools. He dropped 26 against Upper Moreland and scored 25 against Norristown, 10 coming in the fourth quarter.
Though he’s projected to play the two in college, Burton played both point and shooting guard, and forward for the Panthers this season.
Now he’s aiming toward a college that could use a skilled combo guard.
“I look at it as a challenge,” said Burton, who carries a 3.2 GPA. “I was being overlooked [last year] and that shouldn’t have happened. It’s a part of basketball and I wanted to make a point this season that I can play and show people what I can do. I am looking at a bigger picture. I put the work in over the summer.”
Burton certainly convinced his coach, John Timms, that his best basketball could be ahead of him. Timms saw a talented player with a good handle become the Panthers’ leading scorer.
“I think Aaron’s mid-range game is among the best at the high school level,” Timms said. “Aaron has a great back-to-the-basket mid-range post. He’s capable of playing on a level in the MEAC, or at a place like a La Salle or a Temple. I would be a little hesitant to say Aaron would be able to contribute right away, because his intensity needs to improve. But that’s something coachable and I think it’s something that will come in time.
“I just had him for 10 weeks. But once he makes the adjustment to a higher level, and given the chance to do that, I think he can be good. He certainly has the skill set. I think Aaron can definitely be that secret late bloomer who can help somebody. I definitely think Aaron can play somewhere like the American East Conference.”
Timms cited the example of Wissahickon’s Jordan Reed, who’s turning into a very nice player in his sophomore season for the Binghamton Bearcats, averaging a team-high 14.7 points a game.
“Aaron can be a player like Jordan Reed, who comes along and once given the chance, you can take off,” Timms said. “I can see that for someone like Aaron. All the kid needs is an opportunity. I think his best basketball is ahead of him.”
Joseph Santoliquito is a contributing sports blogger for CBS Philly.