Sutton's Spotlight

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Havana, FL - Isaac Sutton is a celebrity at Tallavana Christian.

"It's a blessing to have little kids looking up to me and saying I appreciate what you've done for me and I really don't know what I did," he said.

He's essentially the "LeBron James" to the 211 other students at the Pre-K through 12 school.

"Just hearing the kids say that, I really love it," said Sutton, who has spent the past six years at the small school in Havana.

Sutton is very modest about his popularity, often sharing the credit for his success on the baasketball court. He averaged 27.5 points and 10 rebounds and five assists per game during his senior year.

"It was my last year," he said. "I had to give it my all."

"I love the way he follows instructions," said Isaac Livingston, Tallavana Christian's head boys basketball coach. "Hardworker, on and off the court."

And Livingston is on the mark about working just as hard off the court. Sutton is the President of the A-Rise Youth Ministry, the President of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and went on a mission last summer to Nicaragua.

"Basketball is my centerpiece of what I do, but I wanted to give back," Sutton said.

Coming from a small school - he's only one of 12 seniors - he feared he would not be recruited. But with help from his guidance counselor, Nelson Townsend, Sutton's name spread up north. Townsend, who Sutton considers a mentor, is a graduate of The University of Maryland-Eastern Shore and put in a good word for his fellow student. Soon enough, the kid who goes by the nickname "Zeke" (his middle name is Ezekiel) became the first NCAA Division-1 athlete at Tallavana Christian. He signed a basketball scholarship with UMES.

"I was just like wow," Sutton said. "And I went down on my knees and thanking God for everything."

He hopes to carry the spotlight with him to Maryland and, then, to the NBA.

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