Dover basketball standout Allen chooses Wagner

Elijah Allen

DOVER — Elijah Allen is headed to the Big Apple.

Dover High’s Allen announced his commitment to Wagner College in Staten Island, one of the five boroughs which make up New York City. Wagner is a Division I school in the Northeast Conference.

Allen recently won the Delaware Sportswriters and Broadcasters Association’s Player of the Year award as well as the Gatorade Player of the Year. He was the first Dover boys’ basketball player to win the DSBA’s award.

Allen, who had scholarship offers from seven schools, announced his commitment late Wednesday night on social media.

“This right here released a lot of stress off my shoulders,” Allen said on Thursday. “Now I can sit back and relax to enjoy my accolades and what the team accomplished this season. Then just focus on getting ready for the next level.”

Allen is the second Dover player from this year’s team to commit to a Division I school. His backcourt mate Eden Davis signed with Texas A&M Corpus Christi prior to the start of the season.

Dover went 45-3 over the last two years including a trip to the state finals a year ago. The Senators were in the semifinals again this year but the rest of the season was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Allen was originally scheduled to go on visits after the conclusion of the high school season. But with NCAA recruiting in a dead period because of the coronavirus, Wagner got creative.

“They sent me a slideshow of the campus and how everything is,” Allen said. “I didn’t get to make a visit so it was tough. But they like how I play hard, with a chip on my shoulder. They made it to all the games they could, talked to my family, telling me what I could improve on. They made me feel like part of their family.”

Allen is the second person of his siblings to sign with a Division I school. His older brother Jordan played two years at Rider University before transferring to Lynn University.

Allen said he feels like he’s ready to contribute right away, giving thanks to Dover coach Stephen Wilson.

“I tell people all the time were not a typical high school,” Allen said. “Coach Wilson does a wonderful job to prepare us for the next level. He takes it seriously and he doesn’t play around because that’s what he wants us to do, to go onto the next level. We practice like a college team.”

Allen said he’s already looking forward to the fall.

“I can’t wait to get there, get to know the professors and get set up,” Allen said. “I’m just going to have fun and enjoy it. Not a lot of people get to play Division I basketball and to do it for free is a blessing.”