Demopolis hoops standout Moore signs with Southern Union

Demopolis High standout Josh Moore signed to play basketball with Southern Union. He is pictured with Southern Union coach Ron Radford, Demopolis High basketball coach Ashley Allen, his grandmother Willia Johnson, and his parents Pracey and Michael Moore.

Demopolis High standout Josh Moore signed to play basketball with Southern Union. He is pictured with Southern Union coach Ron Radford, Demopolis High basketball coach Ashley Allen, his grandmother Willia Johnson, and his parents Pracey and Michael Moore.

Demopolis High School is sending a boys basketball player to the junior college ranks for the second consecutive year after Josh Moore signed with Southern Union Friday.

“They’re getting a compact player. I feel like they’re getting a steal. I’ve been telling everybody from the jump they’re getting a player that definitely, I feel like, can play D-I ball. Maybe Mid-Atlantic, but he can definitely play D-I ball,” Demopolis coach Ashley Allen said. “Hopefully they’ll get him and develop him like I know they can. I have confidence in Coach (Ron) Radford. I’ve dealt with him before, so I’m hoping that he can take him to the next level.”

“First off, he’s a fine young man. I really love the way he played. I think his upside is tremendous and I just think he is going to get better and better,” Radford said of Moore. “Hopefully a couple of years down the road, we can get him in a good four-year school and he can do something really positive for himself.”

After averaging 17.1 points and 10 rebounds per game during his senior season, Josh Moore is the West Alabama Watchman Player of the Year.

After averaging 17.1 points and 10 rebounds per game during his senior season, Josh Moore signed with Southern Union Friday.

Moore averaged 17.1 points and 10 rebounds per game during his senior season, only his second with the Tigers following the closure of John Essex in 2014. Despite playing only two years at the Class 5A level, Moore has six years varsity experience dating back to his seventh grade year at John Essex. Over that time frame, he lacked coaching continuity, leaving him with the unenviable task of developing his game amid ever changing systems.

“I think I’m just a versatile player, so anything they write up, I can pretty much help with anything they want. It didn’t take me long to adjust to any coach,” Moore said of the experience, that also left him with an unparalleled level of experience. “It just feels like everybody I’m playing against, I already have a step against them because I’ve seen every defense. I know every offense. I know what to expect when I see a defense on me. Whatever offense needs to be called, I know what to expect.”

Moore, who earned Alabama Sports Writers Association Third Team All-State honors for Class 5A as a senior, will look to continue to develop his game over the next two years, focusing particularly on his skillset away from the basket.

“I see him definitely as a three or a four. He has developed an outside shot. Get him a quicker first step. He can dribble the ball. He can handle the ball. He can play defense on anybody. I put him on a lot of people this year,” Allen said of Moore. “They’re getting a well-groomed guy. He comes from a great family. He’s not disrespectful. He’s easy coach and he’s going to develop a lot more. I saw a lot more that I could have done with him, but I had to concentrate more on the guards because they were a little lower than he was development wise. They’re getting a steal and I feel like they’re getting a great guy as well.”

“We’re kind of up tempo. We push it up the floor. We’re going to run secondary break and then run in the offense. We try to get quick hitters and then go straight into our offense out of that,” Radford said of the offensive system employed by the Bison. “I think he’s a good four man because we like to move our four man off the floor and then let him face the basket some and I think he can do that. Then I think he can go down the block and do some things too, so he’s very versatile.”

For Moore, the decision marked the second time in less than two years that he has been tasked with choosing a school. Following the closure of Essex, Moore faced the choice of where he would continue his prep basketball career and finish his high school education.

“I think I made a good decision because I knew Demopolis was a big school, so I knew they were playing bigger teams,” Moore said. “I just knew that was going to be a better opportunity for me because I knew that I was going to be playing out of state or just out and about. I just felt that, coming up here, I knew I had a better opportunity to get a scholarship.”