It's official: Solomon signs with High Point

By Doug Gorman


The goals were clear for Lovejoy shooting guard Cameron Solomon, and they started to evolve last summer:

Lift his game to a new level and do whatever it took to lead the Wildcats to the playoffs.

After all, it had been seven years since Lovejoy had danced at the high school playoffs, and the Wildcats were hungry to get back among the state's elite programs.

They made it, advancing to the second round of the Class AAAAA tournament.

There were other goals to for Solomon, too. Become one of the few players from Lovejoy to crack the 1,000-point mark in his career.

He did.

Earn Clayton County Player of the Year honors and get nominated as a McDonald's All-American.

He did.

He even went from flying under the recruiting radar, to becoming a player more and more colleges were learning about, and wanted.

Schools such as Troy and Georgia Southern showed interest.

Solomon even peaked the interest of Cincinnati.

But in the end, it came down to where Solomon was most comfortable.

So after paying a visit to High Point University in North Carolina a few weeks ago, the talented basketball player with the shooter's touch committed to the mid-major program.

It became official Wednesday afternoon when Solomon signed on the dotted line to join the Division I program, which plays out of the Big South Conference.

"It's a great campus, and I felt really comfortable with the coaching staff," Solomon said.

Lovejoy coach Rick Francis knows High Point, the same school where Tubby Smith once starred, is getting a quality person and player.

The veteran Lovejoy coach has watched Solomon's game take giant steps over the past year.

"We went to a couple of exposure camps, and watching what he was doing, because he really wasn't there at the end of last season, we kind of talked about what he needed to do to get over the hump.

Once we talked about it, something clicked," Francis said.

Solomon quickly showed his offensive ability once he stepped on the floor for his senior year.

There were huge breakout games for Solomon like the 36-point performance he turned in against East Coweta in just the second game of the season, and the 41 and 42-point contests he turned in twice against Pebblebrook.

Even after a slow start, Solomon finished with 29 points against Coffee as Lovejoy rallied and won 78-64 in the first-round of the playoffs.

Coach and player know there's one area where Solomon needs to improve and that's on the defensive side of the court.

"I have told him for the last four years he controls his own destiny. He can be as good as he wants to be. He can take this thing as far as he wants to go.

"If he starts playing D (defense) like he is supposed to, the sky is the limit," Francis said.

Solomon is not putting too many expectations on himself heading into his freshman year in college.

High Point head coach Scott Cherry has promised the incoming freshman if he works hard, he will have a role with the team starting next year.

"They never made me a lot of promises about playing time," Solomon said.

"I know I have to get better on defense. If I work hard, the playing time will come. If I get 20 or 25 minutes a game as a freshman, that would be great for me."

High Point went 15-15 last year, but like all Division I teams, it dreams of making it to the NCAA tournament and participating in March Madness, just like National Champion Duke, a school located just a short drive down the road from High Point, did recently.

With Solomon's help, the small private school just might make it.