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Division I Basketball Dream in Reach for Abaco Native

D’Andre Vilmar in purple
D’Andre Vilmar in purple

Now in his final year of High School, and after yet another successful season of Basketball under his belt, Abaco’s D’Andre Vilmar is starting to see the major Division I offers that were predicted would come his way.

The six-foot, four-inch guard had a productive offseason on various AAU summer circuits, and the Abaco native helped his team capture the 2016 PIAA Class 4A title with a 73-62 win over the Allderdice Dragons.

Young Mr. Vilmar announced via Twitter that he has recently received offers from the Oklahoma Sooners, Long Beach State 49ers and Buffalo Bulls.

The Bahamian connection with the Big 12 powerhouse Sooners has been well documented with the critically acclaimed career of Buddy Hield and Vilmar could be next in line for the Fall 2017 class.

The 49ers, out of the Big West Conference, last made the NCAA tournament in 2012 and participated in the NIT last year.

The Bulls have been one of the fastest rising programs nationally with back-to-back NCAA tournament appearances, their first in school history.

Vilmar recently completed his junior season for the Roman Catholic High School Cahillites in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

After their second consecutive state title, Roman Catholic will lose three starters to graduation, thrusting Vilmar into the spotlight and a leadership role for his senior season.

In the offseason he participated with coach Darrell Sears’ Jaguars at various tournaments, including the the Big Foot Hoops Las Vegas Classic presented by Hal Pastner in Las Vegas, Nevada, the Texas Hoops Great American Shootout in Duncanville, Texas.

Prior to the summer circuit, Vilmar received one Division I scholarship offer, from the Colorado St Rams while other schools such as La Salle, Penn and Iona have all showed considerable interest.

D’ Andre said as he looks to complete his final year of high school and decide in his future he has been “in the gym right now just working trying to develop day by day and based on where I’m at towards the end of the season will determine my decision on what I do in the fall of 2017.”

He is thankful for the offers and “I pray there’s more offers to come. I strongly believe more will and [there are] various amounts of programs I would like to hear from, but I’m more focused on just hearing from the right one that is going to love and develop me so I can get to that elite level.”

D’Andre say he is confident in his abilities and “where I feel like I can go to any program and contribute, but I’ll sit down have talk with family about it and get their Opinions on what I should do as far as making a decision on which school best fits me. My decision will most likely come towards the end of my high school season.”

Vilmar left Abaco in the sixth grade when he moved to live with his uncle in Delaware for a better opportunity at excelling in the sport.

He credits his family’s vision for the position he finds himself in at the current moment.

With Bahamian basketball players Buddy Hield and DeAndre Ayton garnering national attention, Vilmar said he expects to continue that momentum when he gets the opportunity.

He would also encourage any young man seeking to make it to that level to “just put God first in everything you do and stay prayerful because anything is possible.”

He said “you have to put in the hours to perfect your craft. Me being where I’m at I didn’t think it would happen but God works in mysterious way, just don’t lose hope and never let anyone deprive you of your confidence.”

“To my family, friends, and everyone that supports me back home I appreciate you all and love everyone, your support and all the love you guys show whether its messages or comments on my social media never goes unnoticed! And special shout out to Timothy Roberts appreciate you!”

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About Timothy Roberts

Timothy Roberts

Timothy had his first venture into Journalism just months after graduating from Queen’s College in Nassau taking his first job with The Tribune in 1991 leaving in 1992 for other pursuits.

During his time in Nassau he diversified his experiences working as a warehouse manager, locksmith and computer technician before returning to Abaco, a place he has always considered home, in 1999.

He joined the staff of The Abaconian in 2001 doing graphic design and writing an opinion article called Generally Speaking and after a brief time away, returned to The Abaconian in 2010 as a reporter, graphic designer and computer technician.

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