Jalen Carey: A Hidden Gem Rises From Obscurity

Photo courtesy of Position Sports/Nike.

By David Cordova

This year, in the New York-New Jersey metropolitan area, there have been plenty of talent that have risen from obscurity and have cemented their status as future Division I players, especially in the Class of 2018.

One of those hidden gems that have made a strong impact in the area is none other than Jalen Carey. The 6-foot-3 junior guard from Harlem, NY, has made an impressive showing over the last two years with his athletic ability, his shot selection and his slick moves to the basket.

Carey started his high school career at Dwight-Englewood in Englewood, NJ, averaging 19.1 points as a freshman and 4.2 rebounds a game. He transferred to Immaculate Conception in Montclair, NJ and elevated his level of play even more, by averaging 20 points a game while leading the Lions to an 18-10 record and making the All-State Sophomore team, while reaching a milestone of 1,000 points in his high school career.

During the spring and summer, Carey had strong showings at events such as the Nike Elite 100 in St. Louis, MO and the Pangos All-American Camp in Cerritos, CA. He was also a part of a quartet of guards that led the New Jersey Playaz 16U squad to a championship at the Nike Boo Williams Invitational and a quarterfinal berth at the Nike Peach Jam.

His stellar play has led to scholarship offers from schools such as DePaul, St. Joseph’s, Pittsburgh, VCU, Rhode Island, Temple and local Jersey schools such as Seton Hall, Rutgers, Fairleigh Dickinson, Monmouth & St. Peter’s.

Here’s the Q & A with Jalen Carey:

What motivates you to be successful in the game of basketball?

What motivates me is my family, every time I see my mom and dad got to get up and go to work, that motivates me even more. I don’t want to see them work anymore, especially my mom.

How long have you been playing basketball?

For as long as I can remember. My dad had a long history with basketball and as soon as I was born, he put a ball in my hand. Ever since then, I’ve continued to play. I love the game.

Describe being from a place like Harlem.

Well, this is my hometown. It’s good to be able to play in front of your home crowd and have everybody on your side. In Harlem, you have to bring your game and if you don’t bring your game, everybody’s going to go at you every time.

What is it like being a New Yorker playing basketball in New Jersey?

I was born & raised in New York, but New Jersey, I feel like it’s better competition and I’ve been able to get a lot of looks and attention in Jersey playing under Jimmy Salmon, it’s been wonderful.

Describe your sophomore season at Immaculate Conception. 

Well, my sophomore season, I scored 1,000 points, and I scored a game-high 40 points in one game, I had a great sophomore season.

What is it like playing for a storied program like the Playaz?

The Playaz have been around for a long, long time and they have a great history, playing them, I’ve been able to continue to rep that name and it’s been great

What are your goals for your upcoming junior season?

The main thing I want to do is win. I want to win on the biggest stage, that TOC, I’m going for it and I’m gonna make sure my team works to fulfill that goal.

What’s next for Jalen Carey?

Well, I don’t know what’s in the future, just know you’re going to see my name on the big screen someday.

Highlights of Jalen Carey:

Courtesy of NJ Hoop Recruit.

Courtesy of Hoop Major.

Courtesy of PMV 2012.



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