by Al Woods | Jul 23, 2018 | The Team
Scouting Director: North Hollywood, California
My biggest reason to get into recruiting is for my love and passion I have for not only the game, but also the players. I grew up in small town in Oklahoma where if you weren’t the star quarterback or star point guard the odds were that you weren’t going to play college ball. It’s the sad truth. For myself, coming out of high school I wasn’t recruited and neither were most of my friends who were college worthy. We all had to make our own way through the process of playing at the next level. The thing that I want to accomplish with recruiting is giving athletes, who are good enough to play at the next level, that chance to be recognized.
I want to put the kids who bust their butts day and night into college perusing the sport that they love. It’s not a job for me, it’s a passion. One of my favorite quotes in life,” You miss 100% of the shots that you never take.” I believe that this quote can be applied anywhere in life.
Some athletes think of themselves as someone who may not be the prototypical athlete and you may not think you have a shot at the next level. I’m here to help you get that shot that you never thought was possible so how about you and I shoot these shots together! I’m Cason Troutman, I’ve played basketball my entire life. The goal was to play in college, but a knee injury sidelined me. I joined the military where I did six years in field artillery.
In that time, I’ve refereed and coached basketball. I’ve also played two seasons of semi-pro football as quarterback in Oklahoma. I’m very competitive and will do everything in my power to get you to the next level.
by Al Woods | Jun 10, 2018 | The Team
Recruiting Director Norwalk,Connecticut
Keith Merriman was born to be involved in sports. Born in Harlem, (NYC), he was raised in the Brownsville section of Brooklyn, NY. He started playing football with youth league teams at 12. He played with the older groups because he was too “big” for his age group.
He went on to star at DT/DE at Brooklyn Technical High School in NYC, then earned a full scholarship to Syracuse University where he earned 2 letters. Keith went on to become a graduate assistant football coach at Syracuse for two years. He worked on a staff that included Jerry Angelo (former Chicago Bears GM), Nick Saban (Alabama), Tom Coughlin, (Giants and Jacksonville Jaguars), and Bob Sutton (Kansas City Chiefs).
He moved on to coach the defensive line at Morgan State University for 6 years. In 1987, Keith became the Head Football Coach at Thomas Jefferson High School in Brooklyn NY, where he served until he was injured in an accident in 2010. He has recovered from his injuries and has his eyes set on doing what he can do to help get young people in college.
by Al Woods | May 30, 2018 | The Team
Director, Player Personnel
I’ve always worked in the office environment doing administrative work and working with a variety of different people who helped shape me throughout my career. I’ve worked at well-respected colleges and universities in the city of Cleveland (Ohio).
I knew working in office administration was something that would take me to new heights when I was a student at Jane Addams HS in Cleveland. The name of the school has since changed to Business Careers Center. I signed up for a two year program in Data Processing. Data Processing courses included computer programming, data entry, business math and business typing. I actually did very well with computer programming but chose the data entry as my main course of study.
I studied Office Administration at Cuyahoga Community College-East Campus and started working at temp agencies in the beginning then was hired for a full time office position at a local insurance agency and loved it. From then on I gained so much experience and training in the field throughout the years.
My last job was at Cuyahoga Community College-East working in the Office of the President with a group of co-workers who were outstanding people and who I miss. I am semi-retired as of March 2013 but work part-time at a permanent supportive housing building as Front Desk Associate. EDEN is the name and they provide housing for the homeless and help them to get back on their feet and continue on with their lives.
I started working with Al Woods off and on throughout the years. At first I would just help with little tasks because I was working full-time when Woods Recruiting first started and I believe Al was working part-time also. I didn’t start full-time work at WR until my last job in 2013 and have been going strong since then.
by Al Woods | May 26, 2018 | The Team
Recruiting Director Frankfort; Kentucky
My name is Willie Washington. I joined Woods Recruiting because I want to help student-athletes get recruited for college. Every person isn’t a Division 1 player.
I attended Frankfort High School in Frankfort, KY where I was All-State. After that I attended Georgetown College in Georgetown, KY.
If you can get your education paid for that’s a blessing. I can help you do that at Woods Recruiting.
I’ve coached football for almost 40 years. I’ve coached every level of football from pee wee to minor league (semi-pro). I’ve even had my own minor league (semi-pro) football team. Most of those guys didn’t get recruited by the right division of college. Again every person isn’t a Division 1 player.
I’ve also coached schools in Frankfort, KY. Those schools include Kentucky State University, Frankfort High School, Franklin County High School, Western Hills High School, Elkhorn Middle School, and Bondurant Middle School. I’ve seen talent come and go and I often wondered where it went and why it stopped. When these people graduate high school they’re not recruited by the right college division. I just want to say, “I CAN MAKE IT HAPPEN FOR YOU” I have a phrase that I have told every player I have coached; “ONLY YOU CAN STOP YOU FROM DOING WHAT YOU WANT TO DO.”
by Al Woods | May 13, 2018 | The Team
Recruiting Director: Charlotte and Greensboro, North Carolina
Antwaun Thompson, Coach T, has over 30 years of basketball coaching, teaching, and mentoring on several levels; elementary (Falling Creek Athletic Association), middle school (Falling Creek Athletic Association), high school (Meadowbrook HS), AAU (Richmond Metro) and college (Randolph College). He has been the Head JV and Varsity Boys coach at Salisbury Academy for the past five years as a volunteer. Antwaun is also a Gold Licensed USA Basketball Coach.
He attended Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, VA. His devotion to help young people grow as athletes and individuals has been a driving force behind starting JLT Fieldhouse, Inc., a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to “Coaching and Mentoring the leaders of Tomorrow”. The philosophy that he brings to his business is that fundamentals are the foundation for any successful basketball player. JLT Fieldhouse is also an NCAAU club team.
Antwaun also brings over 20 years of business experience, managing in the private sector. Teaching, coaching, and mentoring young people to prepare them for the real world is a mission that Antwaun views as a responsibility, not a job. Emphasizing education along with athletics provides young men and women the foundation to build a successful life after sports.
Antwaun owes much of his coaching, teaching, and basketball philosophy to former head coach and state champion at Meadowbrook High School, former assistant at Kentucky and former head coach at Tennessee Tech, Mike Sutton.
One of the highlights of Coach T’s career was getting to meet his coaching idol, Dean Smith. He also had the pleasure of coaching the grandson of Dean Smith at Salisbury Academy. Antwaun has been married to his lovely bride for 14 years.
One of Coach T’s favorite quotes is: “A positive attitude will not solve all of your problems but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort.”
by Al Woods | May 6, 2018 | The Team
Terry J. Awls
Director of Scouting, Sylvania, Ohio
Terry Awls has a passion for coaching basketball and has been involved for 20 years. He is currently coaching in the Ohio Celtics 16U AAU program. He has earned his USA Gold Basketball Certification and Interscholastic Certification through the National Federation of High Schools.
Terry was an inductee of the 2009 Birmingham Hall of Fame class and was a 2013 Jefferson Award nominee. He also coached golf for seven years at St. John’s Jesuit High School. This year he was honored by Morrison R. Waite High School with the 2017 Distinguished Alumni Award for Community and Business.
Beyond work and sports, Terry works to serve his community in various ways. He established the Joyce Lee Awls memorial scholarship, in honor of his late mother, for students who wish to enter the hospitality field.
In addition, he serves on the AAA Board of Northwest Ohio, the ProMedica Children’s Hospital Board, Boys and Girls Club of Northwest Ohio and is on the Monroe County Community College Culinary Advisory Board. Terry also serves on the African American Leadership Council (AALC) for the United Way. He is currently working with Motown Publicist and author, Tajuana Ross, on a book deal about his life story.
Terry Awls has been featured on several national and local TV shows and in local papers during his career, including: The Coco Melvin Show; Gigi I am Show; 102.9 Fairways & Greens Show with Bob Steele; 1370 WSPD with Fred Lefebvre; Roundtable with Jeff Smith; Bridges with Doni Miller; and The Sojourner Truth and The Toledo Blade. Terry is also the 2018 nominee for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society Man of the Year.
Terry and his wife Annika reside in Sylvania Ohio, they have five children: Jasmine, Cameron, Braden, Amanda and Adin.