Joe Cremo dreamed big, and made it happen.
“He set his goals way back. Last year he started checking them off,” said the Scotia-Glenville basketball star’s mom, Mary Cremo. “State champs. Division I scholarship.”
The state championship came last season, when Cremo excelled game after game for the 27-0 Tartans. The Division I part became official Wednesday when the two-time Daily Gazette All-Area first-teammer signed his national letter-of-intent with the University at Albany.
“It’s a relief. I’ve been waiting a year and a half for this,” said the 6-foot-4 senior. “Now, I can just focus on the season.”
Cremo’s junior season was chock full of individual accomplishment and honors, including five most valuable player awards after the Tartans won the Schenectady tournament title, Foothills Council title and Section II, state public school and Federation tournament crowns. He was later selected New York’s top Class A player by the state sportswriters association.
“For me, this year isn’t going to be about the stats,” said Cremo, who set school records as a junior with 672 single-season points and 1,394 career points. “I want to build as a leader. Make sure everyone is on task and going 100 percent because we’ve got a big target on us. I want to make sure no one settles.”
Cremo never has.
“I like the fact that he’s a high-character kid and comes from a winning program,” said Great Danes head coach Will Brown. “He’s a gym rat. Eats, sleeps, drinks basketball. All he wants to do is be in the gym working on his game and be in the weight room getting stronger.”
Scotia-Glenville coach Jim Giammattei believed the senior version will be even better than the junior version that averaged 24.8 points, 11.7 rebounds, 4.8 assists and 3.1 steals.
“This year, what he’s done to improve his shot, you will be truly stunned,” he said. “You’ll see him taking, and making, more threes for us.”
Cremo doesn’t know what his role will be with the Great Danes, who enter this season as the two-time defending America East Conference champions.
“He [Brown] can put me at multiple positions,” said Cremo. “I’m known as a scorer around here, but I can pass. Wherever he wants me to play and for how long, I’ll do it to the best of my ability.”
“Albany is getting a complete player,” said Giammattei. “He is fundamentally sound. He understands the game of basketball and can be taught to play any system.”
Cremo has defended high and low for Scotia-Glenville, and has produced points from all parts of the court. On occasion, he even played point guard.
“He has played one through five for us,” said Giammattei. “He’s as close to a Magic Johnson as I’ve seen in this area.”
Cremo wanted to continue his career in this area.
“Joe wanted to play Division I basketball. Joe wanted to play locally. At that point it becomes a comfort. A feel. A vibe,” said Giammattei.
“When I got over there I got some runs with the guys, and the chemistry was great,” said Cremo. “I felt a good connection. All of the coaches got along with me. I like the environment.”
Cremo is the first Scotia-Glenville boy to sign with a Division I basketball program since 1973 graduate Warren Prehmus opted for Vermont.
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Categories: High School Sports