An all-state performer in both football and basketball, not to mention a talent in track, Scales had to make a decision when it came to continuing his athletic career.
His favorite sport is basketball, but many of the schools he looked at wanted him for his football talent. Scales kept waiting for that perfect fit, and that perfect fit finally came along in the form of William Carey University in Hattiesburg, Miss.
Scales recently signed a scholarship with the NAIA school, coached by 29-year and 500-win veteran Steve Knight.
“I’m just glad to be able to continue playing basketball in college,” Scales said. “It’s a great reward for me to continue playing basketball.”
Scales said he has Cedar Bluff assistant basketball coach Johnny Amison to thank for letting him know about the Crusader program.
“Coach Amison had a friend of his who used to go there and they talked to me about it,” Scales said. “Me and (former Cedar Bluff teammate) Marcus (Reese) looked at the school, and we liked it.”
Scales, a 6-foot-3 forward, was chosen by the Cherokee County basketball coaches as their Most Valuable Player last season. The All-State performer averaged over 19 points, five rebounds, two assists, two steals and a blocked shot per game for the Tigers (29-4). He helped take them to the Class 1A state semifinals in Birmingham, and almost to a state championship.
Against top-ranked Pickens County in the title game, it was Scales who connected on the game-tying 3-pointer with 14 seconds remaining in regulation that sent the game to overtime. The Tigers eventually fell short 70-62.
Scales leaves Cedar Bluff with over 2,500 points scored in his high school basketball career.
“I don’t think Tyric left his shoes here, but I think he left some big shoes to fill,” Cedar Bluff coach Joe Carpenter said. “Tyric has a great love for basketball. We’re thrilled he’s got this opportunity to go on and further his education and also get the opportunity of playing in college. It’s a tribute to him and the hard work he’s done while he was here. We’re looking forward to seeing what he accomplishes at the next level. We hope we’ve gotten him somewhat prepared for that. We look forward to seeing him play.”
Scales joins a Crusader squad that went 18-12 last season, including an 8-4 conference mark to claim a share of the Southern States Athletic Conference West Division title.
Knight returns only one starter from last season’s team in forward Jamal Doss, so Scales could get some playing time soon.
“The basketball program is great,” Scales said. “They win championships. They play some good teams. They’ve got some amazing players. They practice hard and work hard. It just feels amazing to play basketball again, play with new people, learn their style and how they play.”
Carpenter said Scales should fit in well with the Crusader program.
“Tyric’s a great person. He’s a very likable guy. He’s going to have some adjusting to do, but I think he’s ready for that now. I’m just glad he’s getting this opportunity to go to the next level.”
It’s a possibility Scales could be joined by Reese in the near future. Reese, who is currently attending Gadsden State, could sign with the school in February.