He’s a high school junior, yet President Barack Obama and the first lady have been in his house. He has an honorary “Uncle Patrick” (Ewing) and an honorary “Uncle Dikembe” (Mutombo). And his own bloodlines are that of another ex-NBA superstar.
He’s Trey Mourning, son of former Heat center Alonzo Mourning, who is involved in political causes and thus has hosted the First Family.
At 6-9 and 210 pounds, Trey Mourning is a rising star in the game his father once dominated, but he’s not yet the best player on his team at Miami Ransom Everglades.
That would be 6-4 senior guard Sam Singer, a University of Cal recruit who leads Miami-Dade County with a 27.3 scoring average.
“It’s a great pleasure to play with Sam because he’s so unselfish,” Mourning said. “In the past, we’ve had issues with him passing up open shots.”
Claude Grubair, who is in his 14th season as Ransom’s coach, said Singer is the best player in school history — and it’s about more than just scoring. Singer is also averaging 10.4 rebounds, 6.7 assists and 4.5 steals.
Mourning, tantalizingly agile and skilled for someone his size, fractured a finger on his left hand and missed 11 games earlier this season. But in 18 games, he has been impressive, averaging 11.8 points, 12.5 rebounds and 7.4 blocks.
Ransom (24-2) is 17-0 when Singer and Mourning are in the lineup, and the Raiders will play host to Key West on Thursday in the Class 4A regional quarterfinals.
“This is the most-talented team we’ve ever had,” said Grubair of the Raiders, who have never been past the regional finals. “This is the most depth and the most skill we’ve had.”
By all accounts, the players also get along with each other. Mourning and Singer said they have been best friends for four years, when they made their varsity debuts.
This season, the Raiders returned all five starters and all their key role players, making the upcoming playoff stretch something the team has been dreaming about for quite awhile.
“This season has been in the back of my mind since my sophomore year,” said Singer, who also had scholarship offers from Stanford, Harvard and North Carolina State. “We’re a veteran team now, and our ultimate goal is to win state.”
Singer, who is expected to play point guard and some wing at Cal, doesn’t have a former NBA player in his family tree, but both his grandparents were excellent college athletes.
His paternal grandfather, David Singer, was a point guard at Florida, and his maternal grandfather, Stuart Kline, was a football center at Pittsburgh.
Now it’s Singer’s time to shine, although he’s not one to crave the spotlight, according to his coach. Singer got a game ball after the Raiders’ season-opener, but he has refused it ever since.
“Sam and I usually talk over who should get game balls,” Grubair said. “He wants the credit to go to his teammates.”
His most-well-known teammate is Alonzo Harden Mourning III — ‘Trey” for short. Grubair predicts Mourning will be a national recruit after this season. He is already just one inch shorter than his dad, and doctors have projected he could grow to 7-2.
Beyond basketball, Mourning is a huge soccer fan, rooting for AC Milan in club ball, and Italy and Brazil in the World Cup. In fact, he and his father have planned a trip to Brazil in the summer of 2014 to watch the World Cup, and Trey has been using Rosetta Stone tapes to learn Portuguese in advance of the epic event.
The oldest of three children, Mourning is an A’s and B’s student, is interested in international business and is already fairly fluent in Spanish. Smart, multilingual and multitalented, Mourning would seem a natural fit for say, Miami or FIU.
But, for now at least, he prefers going away for college, although he is a long way from picking a school, a decision he said will be made with his father being very involved.
“I’m just worried about getting better,” he said. “We have a state championship to win — recruiting is the least of my worries.”