January 20, 2011
Josiah Turner to play for North Carolina prep school

By Joe Davidson

Josiah Turner is on the move -- again -- landing at a national prep school powerhouse in Winston-Salem, N.C., called Quality Education Academy.

His move was first reported Thursday morning by national ESPN.com recruiting director Dave Telep.

Turner has a history of switching schools, a journey that now likely ends at Quality Education Academy, a program with a roster of athletes from around the country.

Turner, a prolific 6-foot-3 senior guard and The Bee's 2009-10 Player of the Year, had said earlier this season that Sac High felt like "home."

But his mother, Doris Ward, clashed with Dragons coach Derek Swafford over playing time. She wanted more minutes and more shots for the team's top player.

Swafford refused to keep Turner on the floor in the fourth quarter of blowout wins.

Ward kept her son out of practices and games. She told Swafford in a meeting last week that she would transfer her son out. The coach said Turner remained at the Oak Park school the rest of the week, however, and he made it clear the Arizona-bound recruit could return to the team, though there "would be consequences."

Swafford eventually decided it was best for his program to move on without Turner. He told The Bee on Saturday that Turner was no longer welcome back to the team for unexcused absences to games and practices, and a general "violation of school and team rules and guidelines."

He added that there needed to be "civility" within the program.

Turner played just 10 games this season for the Dragons. He and his mother have not responded to repeated interview requests from The Bee.

The North Carolina prep school is Turner's fourth school in as many years.

He started as a freshman at Cordova, moved to Sacramento High his sophomore year and flourished. For the first nine days of his junior year, Turner attended powerhouse Sheldon in south Sacramento, but when the Sac-Joaquin Section would not clear him to play sports - the section office does not approve of athletically motivated transfers - Turner returned to Sac High.

Turner can play at his new school because it is a prep school out of state.

About the Prep blog

Bee staff writers Joe Davidson and Bill Paterson provide news, analysis and insight on the area high school sports scene in their Prep Blog. Have a question to ask them? Send them an email any time at jdavidson@sacbee.com or bpaterson@sacbee.com.

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