After one of the most difficult basketball seasons of his life as a high school junior, Cameron Martin came into his senior year with a new appreciation for the sport he loved.
Martin moved from Yukon High School to Norman North High School just before his junior year after his mother got a new job in Norman. The 6-foot-8 big man was going to join one of the best high school basketball players in the nation in Trae Young and play basketball with the Timberwolves, as they aimed for the 6A state championship.
Martin dislocated his knee cap early in the season and didn’t see the floor again until the postseason, but even then, he struggled to move the way he was used to moving on the court.
Following the state tournament, in which Norman North was upset by Putnam City West in the state title game, Martin had surgery on his injured knee and then he decided to move back to Yukon and play his senior season with the Millers.
Yukon coach Scott Raper said the Millers were ecstatic to have their big man back in red and white.
“We knew we had a good, strong nucleus coming back this year,” Raper said. “But Cameron (Martin) is the type of player who allows his teammates to shine. He has a dominating skillset and he creates a lot of opportunities for other players on the floor to have success. His ability to control the post-area allows our guards to make plays for us on the perimeter. Cameron is not only a great basketball player, he is a super kid and a great teammate.”
Martin is having a stellar season for Yukon in 2016-2017, as the now 6-foot-10 225-pound post player is averaging a double-double at 21.1 points per game and 10.8 rebounds per outing. Martin is also averaging 1.9 blocks per game and 1.6 assists per contest.
The YHS senior is shooting 64.8 percent from the field and 74.8 percent from the free throw line, which is exceptional for a big man.
“We have had a good season so far,” Martin said. “We are spacing the floor and moving the ball really well right now on offense. I have really good teammates and that allows me to focus on trying to dominate the paint every time I take the court.”
On top of dominating the paint, Martin has worked hard on improving his perimeter game over the past year and a half with shooting coach Cameron Gray.
“At the next level, I am going to have to play the stretch four position, so I have really been working on my outside shot,” Martin said. “Cameron (Gray) has really helped me expand my game.”
Martin is shooting 39.1 percent from three-point range, which would be impressive for sharp-shooting guard, let-alone a post player who is called upon to control the inside game night-in and night-out.
Martin entered the 2016-2017 season with one weight lifted off his shoulders. He signed a letter of intent back in the fall to play collegiate basketball at Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville, Florida.
Martin said it was the Jacksonville State coaching staff that sold him on the university.
“The coaching staff at Jacksonville State really cares about having a personal connection with their players,” Martin said. “It’s not just about basketball all the time. They care about their players on a personal level and that was important to me.”
Yukon is entering the home stretch of the regular season and Martin believes the Millers can compete with anyone in the state in Class 6A if they play to their potential.
“Our goal is to improve every time we take the floor,” Martin said. “Whether that be in practice or in a game, we want to get better every day. Our goal is to get to the state tournament because anything can happen on any given night once you get there. I feel like we are a talented enough team that we can compete with anyone if we play well.”