You can’t possibly miss Brad Brittingham on the basketball court; his retina-scorching blue kicks make him an easy target. Yet defenders still haven’t figured out a way to stop the Colon swingman this season.
Brittingham leads the state in scoring after having poured in 25.25 points per game through four contests for the Magi, which are 3-1 during that stretch. The 5-foot-11 senior gym rat toured the area this summer in search of competition in an effort to sharpen his already versatile skill set.
From running with guys like current Western Michigan University freshman guard Bishop Robinson at the WMU Rec Center, to more familiar faces from Mendon, Centreville, White Pigeon, Constantine, Mattawan and Sturgis, Brittingham proved he could run with the best.
“I did a lot of work in the summer,” he said. “I didn’t expect to score 31, 27, 24 and 19 and lead the state. I didn’t expect that at all. I expected to play good, though. All summer was nonstop playing at the Courthouse [in Kalamazoo] with the Mendon boys.”
Colon’s only loss so far was a 78-68 road setback to Southern Central Athletic Association rival Climax-Scotts on Dec. 12.
“We’ve gotten off to a pretty good start,” Brittingham said. “We’re not playing as good as we can, but it’s getting the job done. To play like we should be playing, we’ve got to cut down on the turnovers and get in shape. We’re not playing defense like we should be playing defense.
“The games we’ve played, we’ve allowed one or two players (each game) to score over 20 points. That’s just from not playing any [good] defense on them at all.”
Those teams can say the same thing about Colon, which has outscored opponents 261-208 and gotten double-digit efforts from Spencer Smolarz (twice), Tyler Schipper and Mike Flick (twice).
The Magi lost to Climax-Scotts in the Division 4 district finals to finish 11-12 and have revenge on their minds.
With a rematch against Climax-Scotts, two games each against fellow SCAA powers Bellevue and St. Philip on tap, winning league and district crowns won’t be easy. It would be hard to find a player on one of those teams more driven than Brittingham.
“There wasn’t as much of a will to win as this year,” he said. “I think everybody is going to be on board [this year]. I want to win. I wish we could go 20-0 and take it all the way to state. That’s what I want. I think we can win the conference.”