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2022-2023 Player Preview: Colby Brooks

He’s paid his dues and now he should get minutes

NCAA Basketball: Eastern Oregon at Gonzaga James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

“Wow, this guy can play.” That’s what I thought when I watched my first Colby Brooks highlight clip on YouTube. Maybe it was the #20 jersey, but I thought he looked and played a little like Elias Harris. (Brooks gave up #20 at Gonzaga when Kaden Perry arrived)

Colby Brooks ostensibly broke the mold for the Gonzaga walk-on when he arrived in 2020. For the most part, GU Walk-ons were usually 6’ 5” or below from an Oregon/Washington high school with a connection to the University, the coaching staff or they were a coach’s kid who’d probably be entering the family business. Not Brooks, he was a Los Angeles kid who attended an exclusive private school (Loyola High) with a long and prestigious record of elite athletics.

He also played for one of Los Angeles’ better known AAU organizations, the BTI Basketball Club. Ex-Zag and fellow Southern Californian Bryan Alberts also played for BTI. Here’s what they posted about him: “Offensively, Brooks is a fearless driver who can finish above the rim and he has developed a consistent three point stroke and an an elite level rebounder.”

Nicknamed “the Rock” by his teammates for his strength and work ethic, Colby hasn’t seen the floor during the regular season in his two years with the program. That should change this season. With Lang and Graves gone, hopefully Brooks and fellow junior Abe Eagle get their minutes as well as full slots on the travel squad. I look forward to seeing him play.

With at least three, possibly four years of eligibility left (both he and Eagle are listed as redshirt Sophmores, so they may also get the COVID year), Brooks could get his degree, transfer, then play two years at another school. Should he chose to do so, he’ll have the cachet of a Gonzaga degree coupled with the skills honed by practicing against some of the nation’s best players.