Drew Edwards didn’t average 30 points/game in high school. He didn’t leave the Baltimore area to attend a basketball-factory prep school. He didn’t run on the Nike EYBL, adidas Gauntlet or Under Armour Association circuits. He went to the same all-boys Catholic high school that his father, uncle and brother attended. He played with a non-shoe company affiliated AAU program coached by the same people who coached him in youth leagues growing up. He is loyal. He is competitive. He plays to win.
Edwards comes from a basketball family. Both of his parents played hoops at nearby Mount St. Mary’s. Drew’s dad teamed up with Drew’s uncle there to lead the Mountaineers to the 1985 Division II Final Four. Prior to Mount St. Mary’s, both Darryle — Drew’s dad — and Paul — Drew’s uncle — were schoolboy stars at Calvert Hall. Paul’s 1982 Cardinals went 34-0 and won the high school national championship. Paul, Darryle and Paul’s wife, Lisa, are all in the Mount St. Mary’s Athletic Hall of Fame — though Drew’s mom, Jan, swears she’s the shooter in the family. Drew’s twin sister, Danielle, was a top-75 recruit, according to ESPN, coming out of the McDonogh School and is averaging a team-leading 33.3 minutes/game as a starter for the Tigers. She is also second on the team in scoring at 11.9 points/game. How tight-knit is this Edwards family? Darryle told me he won’t get their Christmas tree until Drew and Danielle get home from school. Drew and Danielle both have games on December 21st before they can get home for a few days for Christmas. I’m sure the tree will be nice and fresh on the 25th.
When Drew was thinking about high school at Calvert Hall, he was expecting to be in the shadow of his older brother, Darryle, on the basketball court. Unfortunately, Darryle was diagnosed with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy — a thickening of the heart muscle — during his sophomore year at the age of 15 and told he could no longer play organized basketball. Drew wears number 25 in honor of his brother. Darryle graduated from Calvert Hall with a 4.0 GPA and is currently a junior at Maryland, enrolled in the honors program there. Drew had a very successful career at Calvert Hall in his own right. He led the Cardinals to the Baltimore Catholic League title last season — the first for Calvert Hall in 5 years and 7th in school history — and was a two-time First Team All-BCL selection.
There are many grassroots programs in the Baltimore area that play on the major shoe-company circuits, but Drew decided to stay loyal to coaches that had been with him since he was a young player in grade school. Coach David Thurston of that Maryland 3D team (now Baltimore United) — also the father of one of Drew’s best friends, Bryce, who is a freshman on the Mount St. Mary’s basketball team — shared a story with me from a 9th grade AAU championship game in Myrtle Beach against Team Loaded — one of those major shoe-company sponsored programs. Drew scored 39 points, guarded the other team’s 6’9 center and rimmed out a 20 foot jumper that would have won the game in double overtime. “He wouldn’t stop apologizing to me and his teammates,” Thurston said. “No matter how many times I told him how well he played and that we all could have done one thing better to win. That loss stuck with him for a long time.” That’s the competitive spirit and team player that makes up Drew Edwards.
While many of his peers were transferring high schools and putting on a different AAU uniform from weekend to weekend, Drew Edwards never wavered in his commitment to Calvert Hall and Maryland 3D. He had a breakout game when Providence needed it against Bryant on December 12th, going off from downtown to the tune of five made 3-pointers and a career-high 17 points. Edwards has looked like the most likely of the freshman to join the rotation besides Ryan Fazekas who started the first 9 games of the season before coming down with mono. Edwards fits well with Ed Cooley’s mantra of “Us. We. Together. Family. Friars.” and I have a sneaking suspicion the more opportunity he gets to shine on the court for Cooley, the more times he will have games like Bryant.
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