By MARCUS HELTON
In the past year, Suitland 2013 guard Roddy Peters has emerged as one of the top college prospects in the area, but this summer has been particularly memorable.
The 6-foot-4, 190-pounder has exploded onto the national scene, going from unranked to No. 42 in ESPN’s latest Class of 2013 rankings and No. 53 in Scout.com’s. 247Sports.com gave Peters the highest spot, placing him at No. 16 in its national rankings. (He’s No. 100 in the Rivals150.)
“It’s been good,” Peters said this week. “It’s been an experience. Yeah, it’s been a little surprising, ’cause I didn’t think I was going to go up that high in the rankings and stuff. It felt good.”
Peters, 17, recently trimmed his list of finalists to Georgetown, Maryland, Memphis, Rutgers, Seton Hall, UCLA and Xavier, but said he hasn’t set a timetable for committing.
Peters averaged 23 points per game last season to lead the Rams to the 4A South championship game. He was especially hot near the end of the year, putting up 33, 28, 30, 35 and 29 points in his final five games. He joined D.C. Assault for his final AAU campaign and fit in right alongside higher-profile players like Nate Britt and Kris Jenkins.
Suitland coach George McClure called Peters’ rise unique, but not completely surprising.
“I had a feeling when he decided to play with a high-level team like Assault, I really though that was just the next step,” McClure said. “From all I’ve heard from coaches calling me and people that are out on the circuit, he’s had a big summer So, in some ways its surprising, but in a lot of ways it isn’t, because he’s a talented kid.”
Throughout his high school career, Peters has heard people say he’d have to leave Suitland to attract major college looks, and that talk only increased this summer. Peters, though, decided to stay.
“That says everything about him,” McClure said. “Roddy is a great kid: you ask anybody that meets him, he has a kind heart – sometimes almost to a fault – off the court. On the court, he’s a totally different person, but he’s a very good kid, and his loyalty, it really hasn’t been surprising because of the kid that he is. … In the process, I really tried to not push or pull him really one way or the other. He knew what Suitland had to offer and of course, we naturally wanted him to stay, but as a 16, 17-year old kid, I really wanted him to be happy at this stage in his life and not have any regrets.”
McClure added that he feels players like Peters and Potomac 2014 guard Dion Wiley are showing that high-major talent can thrive in Prince George’s County Public Schools. Wiley has offers from Georgetown, Maryland, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Cincinnati, Miami and Rutgers.
“With AAU being so big, it doesn’t really matter where you are,” McClure said. “If it’s Suitland, Oak Hill, DeMatha, you’ve got to hit the books. You can get the exposure, especially the way its set up now. Really during our season, they’re really following up more than they’re coming to scout talent. So the [AAU] circuit is where you make your name in order to get scholarships, and he shined. He shined in high school, obviously as well, but he shined on the circuit, which has been big.”
DMV Elite’s Marcus Helton recently talked to Peters to discuss his recruitment, goals for the upcoming season and more:
WHAT MADE YOU DECIDE TO STAY AT SUITLAND? “I just didn’t really want to leave, you know? I was comfortable where I was at, and I feel like wherever I go, I’m going to get known if I’m good, so it doesn’t matter where I play at. I could have transferred – there’s a lot of schools I could have went to – but I just chose to roll my way and do my own thing. I’m a loyal person, so I want to roll with who I started with.”
WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FOR IN A SCHOOL? “A place where me and the coach get along good, and has a good atmosphere and everything.”
HOW MUCH DID PLAYING WITH DC ASSAULT HELP YOU? “It helped, because they’re going to put their players in good opportunities and not take advantage of them.”
WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR FAVORITE EXPERIENCE THIS SUMMER? “Probably the NBA Camp, playing with all the top players in the nation. It was good, and it got me a little better I think."
WHAT ARE YOUR GOALS FOR THE UPCOMING SEASON? “I just want to win a championship. I know I’m going to do whatever I’ve got to do so we can win it this year – my last year.”
WHAT DO YOU LIKE TO DO IN YOUR FREE TIME? “I chill, really. Go outside and chill out.”
DO YOU HAVE ANY PRE-GAME RITUALS? “Nah, not really. I mean, I listen to Chief Keef; that’s my favorite rapper, so I listen to him.”
WHICH IS YOUR FAVORITE ROAD GYM TO PLAY IN? “I’ll play anywhere, it doesn’t really matter.”
DID YOU PLAY ANY OTHER SPORTS GROWING UP? “Oh yeah, I always played football; I played wide receiver and quarterback. I was good; I used to like football better than basketball, but basketball, I don’t know, it took over in high school.”
Roddy Peters photos by Marcus Helton, DMV Elite
Contact DMV Elite Editor-in-Chief Marcus Helton at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @MarcusHelton. Also, check out DMV Elite on Facebook!