By TOMMY BRYAN
Mt. Juliet High’s Caleb Chowbay will carve out a little piece of history in late November as the shooting guard will ink a National Letter of Intent with Nashville’s Belmont University.
According to Golden Bear head coach Troy Allen, the 6-2 Chowbay is believed to be the first Mt. Juliet male basketball player to earn a Division I scholarship since the legendary Tom Marshall in the early 1950s.
"From what I’ve been able to find out, we haven’t had anyone go Division I since Mr. Marshall signed with Western Kentucky," Allen said. "Caleb visited Belmont and just fell in love with the place. He also visited Middle Tennessee but I think he had his heart set on Belmont from the start."
A gifted all-around athlete and the reigning District 9AAA basketball player of the year, Chowbay gave up baseball at Mt. Juliet to concentrate on basketball during the spring.
Chowbay played with the highly competitive Midstate Ballerz 17U AAU program.
"Baseball was hard to give up, but basketball is my passion and I knew that’s what i wanted to do in college," Chowbay said Tuesday morning. "By giving up baseball, it gave me an opportunity to get better each day. I chose Belmont because the minute I walked on campus I fell in love with it. I just got the feeling that it was the place for me. I love the coaching staff, and the players. Also by going to Belmont, you get a great education. They have a good reputation around here and they play my style of basketball."
Chowbay is slated to be the starting quarterback for the Golden Bears this fall.
Coached by Rick Byrd, Belmont is coming off a 30-5 record in 2010-2011, the Atlantic Sun Conference regular season and tournament championships and earning a No. 13 seed in the 2011 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship.
The Bruins led the nation in scoring margin, were ranked No. 3 in three-point field goals per game and No. 11 in scoring offense.
Belmont received votes in the Top 25 for nine consecutive weeks.