Bryce Forbes needed a sign.
The 6-foot-7 Damien boys basketball player had completed his junior year, and a strong performance at the Division II state tournament boosted the Monarchs to their first title. Moving up to D-I next season, a possible No. 1 ranking with most of the lineup returning — all practically set in stone.
Forbes looked a lot like a tall, improving player who would fit in well with any program in the nation. He stayed and played with Damien in the ‘Iolani Summer League. But there were rumblings under the surface that he and Jydon Hall might not be back. Hall wound up moving to Georgia to live with his father.
Forbes went to Washington D.C. during the summer. Within a week, his life had changed.
“I went to a Georgetown Elite Camp. There were 32 of us. It was good. I got to meet some legends, learn from them,” Forbes said on Tuesday.
Forbes said the Hoyas are interested enough to offer what amounts to a partial scholarship. If he gains enough weight, Georgetown could bring him to campus immediately after he graduates high school. The second option would be to attend a prep school.
“I’m OK either way. Going to prep school would help me a lot with getting playing time. I need to get bigger, stronger, faster,” said Forbes, who weighs 185 pounds. “Knowing I could actually attend a school like that feels good.”
Forbes’ family is originally from Maryland. He has plenty of relatives still there. His heart, though, is with the Monarchs.
“I feel like we’re going to go back-to-back even though we lost a big part of our team. It’s hard because I’m really close to Boogie. I’ve known him since middle school,” he said.
Forbes, Hall, Jake Holtz, Hayden Bayudan and many of the Monarchs put a lot of reps and time into year-round workouts. While Holtz plays quarterback for Damien’s No. 7-ranked football team, Forbes doesn’t play a fall-season sport.
“I’m trying to gain weight, but more sharpening my skills, shooting, dribbling, jumping. I have trainers giving me advice,” said Forbes, who downs his share of protein shakes. “I’m trying to balance out my plate. I’m not just eating fast food.”
Forbes said he doesn’t eat much fried food.
“I don’t drink (regular) shakes and I don’t drink soda, either. I eat ice cream, but not often,” he said. “I love meat. They said I could pretty much eat any kind of meat.”