By Chris McCarthy/ Publisher/Editor
Alex Perkins’ focus on the present is helping Westbrook Christian win a state baseball championship this week as the team’s starting shortstop, but the Warrior senior recently looked a bit into the future.
Perkins signed a letter-of-intent on Tuesday (May 14) to play basketball at Birmingham Southern College.
A four-year starter at point guard, Perkins last season averaged 11.1 points, 4.9 assists, 3.6 rebounds and 2.2 steals in helping Westbrook to a program-best 27-5 record, finish the regular season as the sixth-ranked team in Class 2A, win the area tournament and reach the Northeast Regional Tournament for the first time in four years.
Perkins scored his 1,000th career point this past season and finished his varsity career with over 300 assists.
“It was about sixth or seventh grade when I really fell in love with basketball, and it’s always been my goal to play in college,” said Perkins. “I started to work hard every day, and today is the day that I’ve been waiting for. I’ve always been an encourager and a motivator and a natural leader, and I had some awesome teammates this year.”
In the 2012-13 season, Birmingham Southern went 20-8 and made it to the championship game of the Southern Athletic Association Tournament.
“I had about six or seven other schools that were recruiting me from the [SAA] Conference, but I fell in love with Birmingham Southern when I visited the campus,” said Perkins, who has a 4.0 grade point average and plans on studying business.
“Birmingham Southern have a great [basketball] program with great coaches, and it’s close enough to home that I can come back and watch my old team play. I’m excited about getting started.”
Joining Perkins on the 2013014 BSC basketball roster is Glencoe High senior and former AAU teammate Austin Hancock.
“The AAU team we played on last year was based in Huntsville. We carpooled two or three times a week, so I got to know him a lot better. We always played against each other, so I’m excited to play with him for the next four years.”
Westbrook boys basketball coach Seth Ford acknowledged that Perkins leaves a sizable void at point guard after directing the Warrior offense for four straight seasons.
“This is my fifth year here at Westbrook, and Alex is the only kid that I’ve coached every one of those years. So I’m very close to him, and he’s like a little brother to me. I know it’s a cliché, but Alex is pretty much the perfect kid to coach.
“We all know what he can do on the basketball court, but in the five years I’ve known him, I really can’t point to one negative them as far as a character or leadership standpoint.
“Having a four-year starter at point guard really was like having another coach on the floor this season, and he took a lot of off of my shoulders in terms of his ability to motivate the guys on the team, either vocally or by example.
“Alex is extremely versatile and was a very good rebounder for a point guard. He also took his defensive abilities up to a new level when a lot of the time we asked him to guard the other team’s best player. We’ll certainly miss him, but we’re excited to see what he’s going to accomplish at Birmingham-Southern. With his work ethic and ability, I have no doubt Alex will contribute right away.”