The Baltimore playgrounds have produced many great basketball players--Muggsy Bogues, Reggie Williams, Sam Cassell, Juan Dixon and Carmelo Anthony to name a few.
Now, as he builds a career at the University of Maryland, Sean Mosley hopes he can soon earn his place on that list.
Mosley was highly touted and drew comparisons to Carmelo while at St. Frances Academy. That's no coincidence. Mosley and Anthony know each other well. Though Anthony is five years older, the two grew up in the same neighborhood and played on the same summer team.
Anthony was a highly touted recruit that went to Syracuse, won a national title and jumped to the NBA, where he's a two-time NBA All-Star.
Mosley, who participated in iHoops' First Team program during high school, also got his share of recruiting interest. Too much sometimes. When he was stressed about it, he chatted with Anthony about the process.
"He's a good guy," Mosley said. "Other people don't have that type of privilege, to sit down and talk to him about the whole recruiting process. He was one of the top guys also coming out of high school. I listened to those type of guys and they helped me out in the long run when making my decision."
Mosley eventually decided to stay home, choosing nearby Maryland over a number of other big-time programs. He made it official during the early signing period and put a hectic recruitment behind him so he could focus on school.
With his career at Maryland in full swing, Mosley took time to talk about his basketball journey with iHoops.com.
Where did you first hear about the First Team program?
I believe it was after my freshman year or going into my freshman year. I heard it was an NCAA program that tells you some rules about eligibility, and what would get you in trouble when you're getting recruited, and having the type of guys around you that can destroy your credibility. I think it was a great program for me overall.
How important were the lessons you learned in First Team?
They were definitely important. I was one of the top recruits in Baltimore at the time. A lot of people were trying to get around me and be my friend at the same time. Just going there and learning things about being that superstar at the high school level. My dad was always around, and he always told me 'Don't let too many people in your circle.' I kept a little circle, a little group of guys that I knew did the right things. I think the NCAA First Team definitely did a good job of providing all that information that I needed.
What was the recruiting process like for you?
My freshman year, I enjoyed being recruited. After a while it became a nuisance and a headache. I basically brushed everything to the side and let my father deal with that. I think it helped me out a lot, I focused on trying to qualify for NCAA eligibility to play in college.
My dad did a great job. He was keeping me focused and not letting me worry about all the mail I was getting. I was getting mail since like eighth grade going into freshman year. At that time, coaches could still text you. I was getting 100, 200 text messages a day. It was kind of annoying when I was trying to make sure my high school team was practicing hard every day and I was trying to make sure I was keeping my grades up in high school. It was kind of hard for me, but having that support helped me out a lot.
Why did you choose Maryland?
It was close to home. Playing time played a big role. I knew I could play as a freshman coming to the University of Maryland. Having a close relationship with all the coaches that coach here--that was one thing that made my decision, having the relationship with the coaches and players that I'd be playing with my freshman year.
My last First Team event, I was talking to Duke (Pryor, First Team leader) and told him I was about to commit to Maryland, and I called my dad and I told him I'm ready to make this decision because I want to make it before my senior year of high school. I signed early too so I could focus on school.
Were you a Maryland fan when they went to the Final Four in 2001 and 2002?
I watched Maryland all the time. When they won the national championship, I think that played a role. Coach (Gary Williams) was the winning coach and he knows how to win.