Raekwon Horton is originally from Santee, S.C., and started his high school career at Keenan High, where he was the two-time Class 3A Player of the Year. He headed north, and spent a prep year at Vermont Academy to get stronger, face better competition and develop his game.
Coming out of high school, he had a bunch of mid-majors in play: Charleston, Towson, Coastal Carolina and Old Dominion. After the year at Vermont, it came down to Charleston and ODU.
“I signed with Charleston when Earl Grant was here,” Horton said. “Then when he left for Boston College, I decided to stay here. I’m not sure if I could have gone to Boston with him, but I never really pursued it.”
He knew Pat Kelsey because the then-Winthrop head coach had been recruiting one of Horton’s teammates at Keenan, and he wound up sticking with the Cougars despite the coaching change.
“It was a combination of Coach Kelsey and his vision, and also that I liked the program,” Horton said. “That’s why I stuck with my commitment.”
As a freshman at Charleston, Horton played in every game and averaged 5.2 points and 3.7 rebounds. He even started two games in the CAA tourney and over the final five games, he averaged 11.4 points and 7.2 boards per contest.
Horton’s minutes have increased from 17.7 to 22.1 this season, and he still fills a significant role, averaging 6.0 points and 3.6 rebounds.
“Last year we had our trials and tribulations,” Horton said. “This season it’s really come together. We never expected this. It’s the power of the unit. Twenty-five strong.”