When Dalane Shaull begins to play basketball for the NAIA program Goshen College this season, he will be doing more than spreading the ball around.
He will be spreading the word about Columbus Christian High School.
“Nobody has heard of Columbus Christian anywhere,” said Shaull, who received both athletic and academic scholarship money to continue his education.
Well, Goshen obviously heard of Columbus Christian.
“They called me,” said Crusaders head coach Kevin Roth. “They were looking for players. I sent Dalane their way.
“There are actually a lot of NAIA schools in the northern part of the state that look for players.”
Perhaps Shaull can make an impact at Goshen and force those northern Indiana college coaches to put Roth on their speed dial.
Shaull is just the third Columbus Christian basketball player to perform at the collegiate level, according to Roth. Pete Lustig played for Olivet Nazarene of Illinois after his high school graduation in 2003, and Kyle Roth (Kevin Roth’s son) played for Bethel College of Mishawaka after his graduation in 2011.
While many high school basketball players tend to play AAU basketball during the summer to get exposure to college scouts, the Crusaders tend not to play at that level. That means Roth has to scramble a bit to get information out about his players.
Winning an Indiana Christian Schools state championship this year certainly helps. Roth has been receiving more calls about the players he has returning, such as Nick Bridgewater, Austin Straub, Josh Miracle and Chris Noblitt.
“We also have beefed up our schedule, adding three more IHSAA (Indiana High School Athletic Association) schools,” Roth said.
Shaull said he loved the way Goshen coach Neal Young ran his program, keeping a small school feel. “It was very family oriented,” said Shaull, who averaged 13.4 points and 6.5 rebounds for a Crusaders squad that went 32-5.
“He really scheduled a lot of time for his players to spend together to build bonds,” Shaull said of Young. “That kind of thing helped us win a state title.”
Shaull said Goshen runs a fast-paced offense but he said he will have to get used to the shot clock. He expects to play guard but isn’t sure which guard position.
He has spent the summer working on his shooting and his ball handling.
Although he will miss all the friendships he had at Columbus Christian, Shaull is excited about a new chapter of his life.
Shaull leaves Aug. 23 for college. He remains undecided on a major.
Roth said Columbus Christian will miss him.
“He was the glue that held our team together,” Roth said. “But I think he is going to do well at that level. It’s going to be a lot quicker, but he worked hard this summer. We noticed that his shot was better at our workouts this summer. And he is a physical player who is going to cause some matchup problems.”