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Remember Them Days: Virginia Union Guard Albert “A.J.” English II

Virginia Union has a rich basketball tradition, headlined by some legendary big men such as Charles Oakley (1981-1985), Terry Davis (1985-1989) and Ben Wallace (1994-1996). All three went on to play many years in the NBA. Yet, during the late 80's, VUU was led by a high flying 6'3 guard from Wilmington, Delaware who took the CIAA by storm. His name was AJ English.

English was a top prospect coming out of Howard Career Center after he led Howard in scoring and to a State Championship. Villanova, DePaul, UNLV and Providence all came calling for his services, however, due to academic issues early in his high school career, English didn't qualify under Proposition 48. English not wanting to sit out a season elected to head south to play for legendary head coach Dave Robbins at Virginia Union, one of the top Division II programs in the country.

After a solid freshman season where he averaged 9.8 points and 3.1 assists, English took off individually. He would average 16.3 points, 5 assists and 4.7 rebounds as a sophomore, 20.5 points, 3.1 assists and 4 rebounds as a junior and with NBA scouts watching closely during his senior season, English had one of the more dominant seasons since Earl "The Pearl" Monroe ran through the CIAA. English would rewrite the CIAA history books averaging 33.4 points (1,001 total points), 5.1 rebounds and 3.1 assists on 49 percent shooting from the field, 45 percent from three point range and 79 percent from the charity stripe, earning Division II Player of the Year honors. He finished his career as the ninth leading scorer in CIAA history with 2,396 points.

After an impressive showing at the Portsmouth Invitational Tournament where he posted 33 points a game, including a 44 point performance in his first game, more NBA teams were intrigued. English would be selected 37th overall in the 1990 NBA Draft by the Washington Bullets (now Wizards) and would play two seasons with the franchise before heading overseas to finish out the remainder of his professional career.

Take a look at the exploits of English during his senior season at Virginia Union below.

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