Offers continue to roll in for Bristol Central’s Clingan
It’s been a frustrating time for 7-foot-1 Bristol Central High basketball phenom Donovan Clingan. The good news is it has nothing to do with basketball.
Clingan, a junior, is currently at home in quarantine. This is the second time in the last couple of months that Clingan has had to quarantine due to contact tracing: the first time from an AAU teammate, the second from a fellow student at Bristol Central.
“I try to do as much working out as I can at home, but it is hard and very frustrating,” said Clingan, who gets off quarantine next Tuesday. He said he has been tested three times for COVID-19, all negative.
The Division I full scholarship offers continue to roll in for the 280-pound Clingan. Ohio State University was the latest to offer him on Monday.
The other 16 are as follows: UConn, Michigan State, Rutgers, Notre Dame, Yale, Virginia Tech, Maryland, Georgetown, Syracuse, Providence, Iowa, Boston College, UMass, South Carolina, Iona and Wake Forest.
He said he thinks he may make a decision after his AAU season next summer. Clingan plays for the Team Spartans out of Massachusetts.
“In the beginning, it (the recruiting process) was a little overwhelming. I’ve started to get used to it. I take it all in right now,” Clingan said. “It’s going to be hard when I do decide, maybe a year from now or a little less than that.”
Clingan said he has spoken with both head coaches and assistant coaches at all of the schools that have offered. That includes UConn coach Danny Hurley as the Huskies make their return to the Big East Conference this season.
If Clingan, 16, is leaning one way or another, he is not telling.
“They (UConn) mean the same to me as every other school does. (Hurley) is a great, funny dude and is leading that program in the right direction,” Clingan said. “Just because they are close to home doesn’t make me like them any more.”
Bristol Central is currently in remote learning, but is scheduled to return to the classroom in early December. The CIAC decided on Tuesday to push back the start of the winter season to Jan. 19 in large part because a number of school districts would not play games while in remote learning.
“I knew something was coming,” Clingan said. “I think waiting is better rather than starting now. The (COVID) numbers are going up. This (decision) gives them time to see what’s going on (in January) and go from there.”
Bristol Central coach Tim Barrette said Clingan and the other players at the school are playing in a fall league not affiliated with either the school or the CIAC.
“We continue to push through these unprecedented times and it is getting really difficult for the kids,” Barrette said. “They just want to play and be active. It is obviously frustrating, but I am trying to be as positive as possible with the kids every day.”
Clingan insisted he has no plans to transfer and reclassify at a prep school — something he has consistently said throughout the entire recruiting process.
“I’m not leaving Bristol Central,” Clingan said. “I personally don’t think the prep schools are going to play.”
Said Barrette: “Donovan isn’t changing his decision as many places are not playing much basketball right now.”
Clingan, averaged 24.8 points, 17.2 rebounds and 6.4 blocks for Bristol Central to earn a spot on the Register/GameTimeCT All-State boys basketball team as a sophomore.