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Growing Pains Over For Isa At Andrews Osborne?

Growing Pains Over For Isa At Andrews Osborne?

WILLOUGHBY, Ohio — Dave Briski kind of knew what he was getting into last year. The former basketball coach at SPIRE, along with a staff that worked with him there, stepped on to the campus of Andrews Osborne Academy in Willoughby and started a prep basketball program from scratch.

They recruited mostly Canadian players entering their freshman and sophomore years of high school, hence the name International Sports Academy. They scheduled a rigorous schedule, which included a date with Huntington Prep of West Virginia at the first Chet Mason Invitational at Brush.

They took lopsided losses.

Then, the mood started to change. Coincidentally, they played Huntington Prep again in West Virginia. Those freshmen and sophomores didn’t struggle as much as they did the first time. A day later, they spoiled another team’s senior night in Kentucky.

ISA’s players have since taken off in their recruiting, led by 6-foot-11 center Charles Bediako, who holds scholarship offers from Ohio State and Alabama. The program even started to attract Northeast Ohio talent, starting with former Benedictine swingman Andy Barba and now Ohio State-bound guard Demetrius “Meechie” Johnson Jr.

What has changed at ISA as it enters Year 2? Is the program over its growing pains? Meet the players in the above video from a recent camp visit. Cleveland.com’s boys basketball previews begin early with a stop at nearby prep schools, which have already begun training for the season. Check back in November for visits to some of the area’s top high schools.


For now, here is more on ISA:


Coach: Dave Briski (second season)

Returning starters: Jaden Clayton (5-11, So., PG), Keon Ambrose (6-6, Sr., F), Kordell Charles (6-7, Jr., F), Charles Bediako (6-9, Jr., C),

In the rotation: Andy Barba (6-6, Sr., G), Cole Earley (6-1, Sr., G), Colby Dillenbeck (6-6, G), Brad Colbert (6-2, G), Tyruse Boock (6-2, G), Dario Biaggi (6-3, G), Milo Merrick (6-1, G)

Outlook: ISA enters its second season after starting from scratch, led by a handful of Canadian-born players. That has since changed with the program adding Barba from Benedicitne and 6-3 junior guard Demetrius “Meechie” Johnson Jr. from Garfield Heights. Johnson is sitting out this season while recovering from a knee injury, but said he expects to return to action in the spring and in time for AAU season. The Ohio State commit averaged 23.0 points per game last season at Garfield Heights. He is not the only Division I recruit at ISA, however. Barba is committed to Miami (Ohio), while Ambrose and Charles are surveying their options. Bediako might be the biggest, both physically and figuratively, with a handful of offers that includes the Buckeyes and Alabama.


Nov. 1 vs. Orangeville Prep in Nassau, Bahamas, Nov. 2 vs. Ridley College Prep in Nassau, Bahamas, Nov. 3 vs. NBA Academy Latin America in Nassau, Bahamas, Nov. 9 at Aspire Academy, Nov. 12 vs. Holy Cross Academy, Nov. 15 vs. Moravian Prep in Charlotte, Nov. 16 vs. Combine Academy in Charlotte, Nov. 23 vs. St. Frances Academy in Woodlan Hill, Pa.

Dec. 1 vs. East Tech at Cleveland Heights, Dec. 6 vs. TBD in Saltsburg, Pa., Dec. 7 vs. Kiski School in Saltsburg, Pa., Dec. 11 vs. First Love Christian, Dec. 13 vs. Teays Valley, Dec. 14 vs. SPIRE in Mansfield, Dec. 19 vs. TBD in Chapmanville, W.Va., Dec. 20 vs. TBD in Chapmanville, W.Va., Dec. 21 vs. Mount Mission in Akron

Jan. 3 vs. TBD in Wheeling, W.Va., Jan. 4 vs. TBD in Wheeling, W.Va., Jan. 8 vs. Kiski School, Jan. 9 at Western Reserve Academy, Jan. 10 vs. Aspire Academy, Jan. 14 at Teays Valley, Jan. 15 vs. Erie, Pa., Jan. 17 vs. Hillcrest Prep at Flyin’ to the Hoop, Jan. 25 vs. Aspire Academy, Jan. 26 vs. Cleveland Central Catholic, Jan. 30 at Kennedy Catholic

Feb. 1 vs. TBD in Chatham, Va., Feb. 2 vs. TBD in Chatham, Va., Feb. 6 vs. Western Reserve Academy, Feb. 8 vs. Beckley Prep in Hickory, Pa., Feb. 9 vs. Our Savior Lutheran in Hickory, Pa., Feb. 11 at Buchtel, Feb. 14 at St. Edward, Feb. 15 vs. Vision Academy, Feb. 18 vs. Planet Athlete, Feb. 20 at La Lumiere, Feb. 22 at First Love Christian