For the past few seasons, Central High School basketball's Darius Rozier has been putting on a show for Coffee County fans and dreaming for his chance to play at the next level. That dream became a reality on Friday, April 12 when Rozier signed a letter of intent to play for Columbia State Community College, starting in the 2019-20 season.
"To come here and just be able to win and get better as a person and a player means a lot," Rozier said about his time on the CHS team. "So to go [to Columbia State] and get to continue, it means a lot."
Rozier had a standout career with CHS and capped it off by helping lead the team to its first regular-season district title in several decades. For his efforts, Rozier was named the 2019 District 8-AAA MVP and was named to the Region 4-AAA All Region team.
The senior went out with a bang in the team's final game of the season. In the opening round of the Region 4-AAA tournament against Riverdale, Rozier reached 1,000 career points as a Red Raider.
"Seeing his growth and development on and off the floor, it's a great feeling," Coach Micah Williams said. "He's kind of a testament of what can happen if you actually put the time and the work into it."
The Columbia State Chargers are members of the Tennessee Community College Athletic Association and the National Junior College Athletic Association. The men's basketball team won four TCCAA state championships, four regional championships and placed at the NJCAA National Championship three times.
For Rozier, the program's record of success was only one of many factors that went into his decision.
"I considered everything. The distance away from home, the possibilities, opportunities, just everything in general," Rozier said. "I took everything into account and that was the perfect fit."
A natural competitor, Rozier is looking forward to getting out on the court and helping his new team win. He is also thankful for the help of those who allowed him to reach this point, including his family, Williams and his CHS teammates over the years.
For Rozier's mother, knowing her son will get the chance to continue to play the game he loves is something else to be thankful for.
"I am so proud of him," Sherita Rozier said. "I love my son, I'm proud of him."