Archive for March, 2012

Erving Walker Florida
Photo:Zimbio

In one of the funniest stories that’s not actually funny, Florida guard Erving Walker has been charged with stealing a taco and then running from Police. Prior to this, Walker was known as the player who is the all-time leader for the Gators in assists.

Walker apparently ordered a Taco from a street vendor then ran away without paying, causing a few policemen to pursue him on foot and continuing to evade them for some time.

Walker’s court date has been set for April 19th.

Kentucky forward Anthony Davis (23) gets his hand on the ball as Vanderbilt left Festus Ezeli (3) drives to the basket during the NCAA SEC Men’s Basketball Championship at the New Orleans Arena in New Orleans on March 11, 2012. UPI/A.J. Sisco

    

By Marcus Shockley

Over the years several axioms have presented themselves in regards to the Final Four, but the sports media will do everything in their power to ignore these and make sure fans forget them, as well. So without further ado, let’s go some of the rules that the media won’t be talking about during their 600 hours of NCAA programming this weekend.

1. Any team that reaches the Final Four can win it all.

Forget what the media tells you, what the TV analysts repeat and what your fat neighbor tells you. No team reaches the Final Four without having to beat someone, and, to be blunt, sometimes the ‘best’ teams doesn’t win when they are expected to. If it was a series match up like in the NBA, the best teams would inevitably win out, but in a one-game-sudden-death scenario, a team just has to be good enough on a given day. While every year some teams get “gifts” (i.e., Kansas had to be thankful that UNC was missing their entire starting back court), but that doesn’t discount the fact that for any team to advance, they have to survive the first weekend, which knocks out 52 teams right away, then the Sweet Sixteen, then the Elite 8.

2. Coaches are the most important factor in NCAA tourney games

The biggest difference between the NBA and college basketball is who controls the team. In the pros, the players have too much control over what happens on the court and many coaches are just figureheads. Not so in college. College basketball’s top teams are dictatorships, with established coaches who will bench any player regardless of their NBA prospects. Nowhere is this more evident in the NCAA tournament, where the same coaches rotate through the Final Four ever year, despite seasons where they are supposedly ‘slumping’. All four coaches in this year’s FF have been here before – and two of them have won it all.

3. Bet against underclassmen

In a sports world where basketball one-and-dones are the norm and many strong teams are loaded with freshman and sophomores, it’s easy to forget that teams with upperclassmen almost always prevail, despite supposedly being inferior. Witness Duke in 2010, a team that wasn’t even expected to reach the Final Four, much less win it all. And UNC in 2009? All upperclassmen. It’s not always true, of course, but over time the averages heavily favor teams with experience. People also like to laud the Fab Four of Michigan but completely forget that they were beaten twice by older teams in the Finals.

4. The media will introduce a meaningless meme.

The media has to have a reason for people to watch the NCAA title game, especially since the vast majority of fans have no vested interest in the game. But it’s no longer just the game itself that needs ratings; ESPN and Fox have so many hours of TV and radio full of talking heads that they need people to pay attention to as well, and that means they work to create a ‘fight card’ of promotional talking points. In 2005, the media introduced the “Team vs. Talent” idea to describe the match up between UNC and Illinois, despite the fact that both schools had multiple future NBA players.

5. Someone will introduce the ‘could college team X beat the worst NBA team?’

You’d think people would stop trudging this old nugget out, but they inevitably do every few years. In the early ’90s, people posed the idea that UNLV might be better than the worst NBA team, which was quickly shot down, but that didn’t stop it from being brought back up with the dominant team-du-jour every few years. This year, it’s Kentucky and the Charlotte Bobcats. Don’t even consider it as a legitimate question, even for teams like Kentucky or UNC who are loaded with future NBA players. The reality is that NBA players are far more trained than college players, for the same reason that you don’t want to hire a lawyer right out of school or have a doctor who just finished his internship over one with 10 years of experience. College players don’t know this yet, but once they step out of school, all of the accolades disappear, and now they are going to be playing against other adults whose livelihood depends on beating them. Pro players are stronger, more experienced and many of their days are spent working on staying employed.

College players work really, really hard, but it’s nothing compared to how good they would have to be to survive at any pro level. Even the worst NBA team is loaded with former college superstars. Add to it that if Kentucky lost to an NBA team, they wouldn’t get cut, but those NBA players know that if they lost to a college team, someone is going to lose their paycheck. Believe this: no professional NBA player who is looking at the prospect of losing their money is going to allow themselves to lose to a college team. It wouldn’t be close and it wouldn’t be pretty.

Anthony Davis

Adidas Phenom 150 Spring 2012

By Marcus Shockley, Lance Everette and James Blackburn

The Adidas Jr. Phenom 150 in Winston-Salem, NC once again brought some the best up-and-coming talent from the region into one place to play against good competition and showcase their talents. Here are some of the top players of the day that we saw as well as several players to watch.

Top Players by Class

Class of 2015

Spencer Wilson, 5’11”, G (High Point Wesleyan, High Point, NC)

Good handle- takes care of the ball and doesn’t turn it over. Left handed. Looks up the floor in transition and has excellent court vision. Good shooter. Likes to crossover left to right. Poised and collected as a PG.

Darryl Myers, PG/SG, 5’8” (Oak Hill Academy, Mouth of Wilson, VA)

Solid skilled guards and with size will be getting big time college looks. A gifted passer and scorer, he has a super slick handle and throws passes that echo of Brandon Jennings. Pushes the ball hard and has a big time offensive game and hesitation dribble. Very high ceiling but much of that depends on if he gains much height. Pushes the ball with purpose and has a high basketball IQ.

Deishawn Anderson, SG/SF, 6’4” (Quality Education Academy, Winston-Salem, NC)

Physically strong wing who can play with contact. Still working on developing consistency in shot. Will need to continue to develop wing skill set but athletic. Wasn’t consistent from deep early but did hit some in later game scouted.

Class of 2014

David Sharpe, 6’6”, F (Englewood HS, Jacksonville, FL)

Strong player who can finish inside. Showed the ability to handle the ball on the perimeter and create his own shot, although he spent the majority of the game on the block. Somewhat undersized playing the 4- but makes up for it by throwing his weight around- wide body. Works hard on the boards. Surprisingly athletic. D1 schools should begin to monitor his progress.

Christian Terrell, 6’3”, G (Creekside HS, Jacksonville, FL)

Defensive minded player- contests shots. Long and athletic. Better slasher at this point then shooter- attacks the basket hard and finishes on the break. Left handed player with bounce. Jacksonville University has expressed interest.

Colton Bishop, 6’1”, G (Forsyth Country Day, Lewisville, NC)

Solid guard who can play either guard position effectively. Has great court vision and is unselfish as a PG. Good shooter who can shoot with feet set- great from 3pt range.

Cody Martin 6’7”, F (Davie County HS, Mocksville, NC)

Versatile player who can play the 3 to the 5. Athletic/high riser. Strong slasher. Has multiple D1 offers. Really played well today.

Larry Curry III 6’2”, G (East Forsyth HS, Kernersville, NC)

Finishes around the basket. Attacks the rim with purpose. Good size, athleticism, strength for PG position. Very fast with the ball baseline to baseline. D1 prospect.

Cory Hanes 6’4”, F (High Point Central, High Point, NC)

Plays extremely hard. Works the boards on both ends. Decent shooter from the perimeter. Tough, strong player.

Spencer Scott, PG, 6’2”, Charlotte Christian

Big solid guard who plays under control and had a nice stroke. Looks more comfortable in the half court but has excellent awareness and can stroke it from outside. Effective both on and off of the ball today but played mostly off of the ball in the games scouted.

Nate Motley, PG, 6’1”, undecided (Hampton, VA)

Another surprise of the camp. Super quick and agile guard, plays well at full speed and is in attack mode with shot or pass. Can play on or off of the ball but is always looking for a shot or open man. Really good in the open court and is the type of player that would fit in well on a running team. Quick hands; reclassing to 2014. D1 prospect.

Stavian Allen 6’8”, F (Word of God, Raleigh, NC)

Allan lives above the rim and has great agility. Is a high octane transition player with great hands and is explosive. Good slasher and strong finisher. Right now more of a tweener who is working to play more on the wing. Needs to continue to work on ballhandling and be a consistent threat from outside but a DI prospect for sure.

Stavian Allen Highlights (ScoutsFocus showcase)

Caleb Martin 6’7”, F (Davie County HS, Mocksville, NC)

Good shooter from the perimeter. Capable of playing multiple positions including the PG- good enough ball handler and passer to play the 1. Several D1 schools have offers on the table.

Aaron Carver, SG/SF, 6’5” (Northeastern HS, Elizabeth City, NC)

Has really good length and agility. Shot was really falling early in the game but had a tendency to settle for jump shots instead of using his size and athleticism to get to the rim. Definitely a wing player with the size and ability to play that position at the college level.

Class of 2013

Jackson Kent SG/SF, 6’7”, High Point Christian Academy (High Point, NC)

Jackson Kent continues to impress and this Phenom event was no different. Kent possesses D1 height and skills at the wing position. He can handle the ball as a shooting guard, runs the floor on the break and can slash and shoot. Needs to continue to add strength and is a combo SG/SF. High motor, plays well in transition. High ceiling. Can dominate the ball and is an impact player.

Jordan Robinson 6’9”, F (Quality Education Academy, Winston-Salem, NC)

Strong and physical player. Runs the floor and moves very well for a player his size and build- fluid movement, moves like a 6’6” SF, not a 6’9” power player. Solid back to basket game with a good drop step move he used repeatedly to score today. Establishes solid post position- posts up hard. Blocks and alters shots. Demanded double teams because he was dominating offensively. Several D1 schools have offered scholarships including UNC- Charlotte and Hofstra.

Patrick Rooks, SG, 6’3″ (Charlotte Christian)

Continued to show his soft touch and solid fade away. Lefty with quick pull up off of the dribble and great first step. Has committed to Clemson.

Brian White 6’7”, F (Sports Academy, Chesterfield, VA)

A great team player- versatile- does whatever it takes to help his team win. Above average shooter, ball handler, passer, and defender. Long and active. Good form and arc on jump shot. Smart defender- did a great job of fronting bigger defenders and played solid help side defense. Boxes out on the defensive end- rebounds well on both ends. High motor. Effective midrange game especially from high post- fits the SF position perfectly. He told me that schools such as VCU, Wake Forest, and Nebraska have expressed interest. Underrated style-MM talent. Needs to improve ball handling, especially when under pressure.

Gejuan Long 6’5”, F (Mt. Tabor HS, Winston-Salem, NC)

Big time leaper- had several highlight dunks today including a 1 hand throw down on a 6’10” defender that excited those in attendance. Attacks basket relentlessly and with out any hesitation. Above average outside shooter with the ability to hit the open 3. Can create own offense and handle the ball well for size- good L to R crossover that he used to get to the rim. Capable of finishing with contact- good body control- can change shot in air and finish. Runs outside the passing lanes and finishes on the break above the rim. College level ability and talent that D2+ schools should look at.

James Daniel III 6’0”, G (Phoebus HS, Hampton, VA)

Heady PG with excellent ball control and court vision. Good on ball defender- pressured ball handler and has quick hands. Hard worker at both ends of the floor. Can get to the paint at will where he can finish over bigger defenders or kick to open teammates. Floor general- did a great job of getting team in sets and getting players spaced. Vocal leader on floor. Shifty and quick. Great ball handler- can use either hand and go either direction. Showed off a nice step back jump shot- does a great job of creating space to get off shot. He said he has offers from Howard and Holy Cross. 2 inches from being a HM- one of the top PG’s seen today.

Youssoupha Kane 6’11”, C (Word of God, Raleigh, NC)

Skilled for size and position. Played good help defense and was active. Good rebounder, especially on the defensive end. Shot blocker. Showed the ability to rebound the ball and advance the ball with the dribble. Above average passer. Solid drop step moves around rim- either scores or draws foul. MM+ player.

Youssoupha Kane Phenom highlights

Chuck Ogbodo 6’11”, C (High Point Christian, High Point, NC)

Communicates on the court. Moves well defensively and is active. Establishes good position on the block- really fights for deep position. Good rebounder. Does a great job of staying straight up on the defensive end- long arms- contests shots with out fouling-making players finish over his long 6’11” frame. Showed a sold hook shot as well. D1 player who will only get better with time.

Craig Hinton 6’6”, F (East Forsyth HS, Kernersville, NC)

Incredibly athletic- plays the game above the rim. Had a huge alley-oop dunk today where his head was at the rim. Showed the ability to hit open shots on a consistent basis as well. D1 talent and ability.

Alec Wintering 5’9”, G (United Faith, Concord, NC)

Super quick ball handler who played behind Florida-bound Braxton Ogbueze at United Faith this year. Sends the defense scrambling when he has the ball because he has elite quickness and speed with the ball in his hands and a super tight handle in traffic.Good shooter, court vision, has the ability to get to the basket and finish, solid on ball defender. Very good awareness and should really come into his own running the point this season. Undersized but smart, talented enough to play at the next level without question and looks like he still has room to grow once he runs a team full time. Definitely a D1 prospect and has several offers: Iona, Manhattan, Duquesne, plus interest from several more.

Troy Caupain 6’3”, G (Cosby HS, Cosby, VA)

Confident guard who likes to have the ball in his hands. Solid shooter who can also put the ball on the floor and attack the basket. Sees the floor and is an above average passer. Has several offers from D1 programs.

Class of 2012

Brice Robertson 6’1”, G (Gospel Light Christian School, Thomasville, NC)

One of the surprise players at camp. Smart player who helps his team win. Good handle with the ball. Attacks basket and is a good shooter- takes good shots and doesn’t force the issue. Fluid, slender player with good passing vision, can run the point and was able to play with the best players on the court. Will need to add strength but at 6’ and a true, agile point he impressed all day and gained confidence as the day went on. Definitely a player who should be getting serious looks from some D2 and NAIA schools.

Robert Story, G, 5’11”, Durham School of the Arts

Athletic guard with hops- had several dunks in transition. Active, strong bodied combo guard who works hard and runs the court hard at all times. Isn’t a true point but can run the PG well enough. More effective off of the ball but is an active rebounding guard and gets a lot of loose balls. Moves well without the ball as well.

Hansen French, PG, 6’1”, Trinity School of Durham (Durham, NC)

True PG who plays eyes up and goes hard to the hole. Tough and hard nosed. Runs the team effectively even in these loose games of pickup.

Players to Watch by Class

2015

Tyler Creammer, C, 6’8” (South View HS,Parkton, NC)

Creammer is a big bodied post player who looks like he could add quite a bit of strength and is still an overall raw prospect. However, with his size and frame he could become a solid banger in the paint.

Dalen Dotson, G, 5’9″ (Charlotte Christian)

Deft, low handle and good vision. Looks to put pressure on the D and can create his own shot.

2014

De’Andre Kellam, SG, 6’2” (Martinsville HS, Martinsville, VA)

Has really good passing vision from the off guard spot – really good at finding players in traffic or for the look ahead. Has good strength but will need to continue to develop pure PG skills. More of a combo guard at the moment with SG/SF game but vision is extremely good and has deft passing touch.

Daniel Kanakanui, SF/PF, 6’5”, Ragsdale HS (Greensboro, NC)

Versatile player who is most effective in the half court and will need to work on becoming more of a wing. Looks most comfortable and effective at the PF spot right now but does have the ability to hit the pull up jumper and stays engaged at all times. Will need to improve handle and first step to be able to play more at the 3.

Malik Pulley, PG, 5’11”, Nash Central HS (Rocky Mount, NC)

A true PG with a good skill set and good physical tools. This type of event is tougher on pass-first point guards and Malik fell into this category today, but he is one to keep an eye on.

2013

Kendrick Stukes, PG, 5’10”, Thomasville Prep (Thomasville, NC)

Was tentative in the early going but started scoring heavily in later games. Quick and has a good mid range and is improving as an outside shooter. Needs to continue to improve PG skills and always commit defensively. Good on the break.

Aaron Williams, SG, Croatan HS (Morehead City, NC)

Agile guard who gets up and down and looks like a solid prospect. Athletic, versatile and long.

2012

Omar Chiselom, G, 6’0”, Hibriten HS (Lenoir, NC)

A lot of strength and a really good passing off guard. Looks more like a combo guard and would have to develop much more as a point but adds defense and toughness. Was matched up against much taller players in the post and had trouble but never backed down. Pit bull type player.

Torey Baskin, SG, 6’1”, Mt. Tabor HS (Winston-Salem, NC)

Baskin has good athleticism and was able to show it today running some high octane players. Looked good with his shot in the game scouted.

Seth White, PG, 6’0” Thomasville Prep (Thomasville, NC)

Good outside shooter and poised true PG. Doesn’t turn the ball over and has good physical strength. Has to make sure he takes good angles when defending on perimeter.

***

Southeast Summer Showcase basketball north carolina Hey! Have you heard about the Southeast Summer Showcase? It’s a premier individual players’ showcase, taking place on May 5 at Forsyth Country Day in Lewisville, NC. Top players, college coaches and scouting services will be on hand for this high level, high competition basketball showdown. Click here and get more information today.

Jordan Taylor
Photo:TheSportsBank.net

By James Blackburn

Game Scouted: Wisconsin vs. Syracuse (NCAA Tournament)
Box Score

Syracuse wins 64-63

Scouting Report

Jordan Taylor (G, 6’1”, SR)

Stats

40 min, 6-15 FG, 5-9 3pt, 4 reb, 6 assist, 1 st, 1 blk, 1 TO, 17 TP

Strengths

Offense flows through him- makes team go. Crashes the offensive boards when he is playing off the ball. Deceptive defender-quick hands. Contest shots on the defensive end and boxes his man out for the most part. Good passer- makes smart/effective/easy passes/simple passes- does an excellent job of utilizing ball fakes. Unselfish. Underrated playmaking ability-did a great job of putting players in position for easy scores. Has a very good understanding of the game-extension of the coach on the floor- high IQ. Very good system player who will do what is asked of him. Patient/Poised- is never in a rush- didn’t force shots against Syracuse zone in this game. Good form on shot- gets feet set- good follow through- high/quick release. Showed the ability to shoot the ball, including the 3 off the dribble and with feet set and the ability to create his own shot- he is an above average shooter and is consistent. Not the tallest or longest player at 6’1”, but has a high release and gets good elevation on shot enabling him to shoot and make shots over defenders and with a hand in his face Takes good care of the ball- has almost a 3 to 1 assists to turnover ratio. Moves well with out the ball- when playing off the ball- did a great job of getting in the open gaps in the zone. Strong upper body- NBA ready strength.

Weaknesses

His quickness and athleticism are not at an NBA level. Struggles to get to rim- doesn’t have the speed to blow by defender and get to painted area at will. Didn’t seem comfortable in creating/scoring/utilizing P/R situations. Has a low motor- doesn’t seem to go all out or assert himself every possession- plays just about every minute- he may be resting on some possessions. Did not do great job in the first half of this game on the defensive end- allowed his man to get to the rim to easily and seemed to give up and didn’t get a hand up when he struggled to get over a screen- may be fatigue- never came out this game. Struggled to a degree to match up with the athleticism or Syracuse guards. Struggles in a fast break/up and down style game.

Overview

Averaging a team-best 15.5 ppg and 4.5 asp, while shooting 35.9% from 3 and 79% from the line. Also leads the team in steals and minutes played. Named First- Team All-Big Ten. Last season as a junior, he was named to multiple All-American teams and to the First- Team All-Big Ten and to the Big Ten All-Defensive Team.

Low key/quite demeanor. Great sportsman ship showed this game multiple times, yet he is a leader on the floor- floor general. Poised at all times- never looks rattled or shaken no matter score/situation. Right handed player who prefers to go left. Heated up from 3-point range this game- many of these shots coming beyond the college line and came when the team desperately needed a score or at crunch times.

It is difficult to evaluate everything Taylor can do when scouting this game, partly because Syracuse only plays zone. I would like to see how Taylor performs against a man to man defense and how well he can break his defender down and get to the rim. I was however able to notice skills that would be there no matter what defense is deployed against him. Taylor has a high basketball IQ, is an excellent passer, and an above average shooter with NBA 3 point range. He can play off the ball and with the ball in his hands and is comfortable in either situation. He is a smart enough defender and has quick enough hands to defend the PG guard position at the next level, despite his physical shortcomings (size, quickness, athleticism). He would struggle to score and defend any thing other then a PG at the next level. I think he would be a good pickup for an NBA team in the mid to late second round depending on the team. I believe he could contribute off the bench for a team that played a half-court style game primarily instead of an up-tempo style. Organizations such as San-Antonio, Portland, or Boston would be good examples. He won’t ever be an all-star and may not ever become a starter for a team, but he would be a good locker-room presence, a hard worker, and a great teammate in my opinion.

***

Southeast Summer Showcase basketball north carolina Hey! Have you heard about the Southeast Summer Showcase? It’s a premier individual players’ showcase, taking place on May 5 at Forsyth Country Day in Lewisville, NC. Top players, college coaches and scouting services will be on hand for this high level, high competition basketball showdown. Click here and get more information today.

By James Blackburn

The first annual Forsyth County All-Star game took place this past weekend where over 200 spectators witnessed a dunk contest, 3 point shootout, skills competition, and oh yeah, an All-Star game in the gym at Piedmont International University. Seniors from Forsyth County Schools competed against each other in the All-Star game with players from West Forsyth, Forsyth Country Day, North Davidson, Reynolds HS, and West Stokes forming the West Team pitted against the East team featuring players from Southwest Guilford, East Forsyth, Winston-Salem Prep, Bishop McGuiness, and North Forsyth.

Carl Tyson (G, West Forsyth HS) ran through cones, completed passes, and made enough shots to win the skills competition with a time of 27 seconds. Jordan Hanner (G, Southwest Guilford HS) won the 3 point contest with some precise shooting in all the rounds. Alex McCalister (F, West Forsyth HS) won the dunk contest and an invitation and spot in the Basketball Elite Southeast Summer Showcase and dunk contest. Alex is committed to play football for the Florida Gators.

Jordan Hanner carried over his hot shooting from the 3-point contest to the game itself and helped carry the East team to 36-35 lead at the end of the 1st quarter by not only hitting multiple 3’s but leading the break, playing defense, and racking up assists, making an early case for MVP. In the 1st quarter the guards dominated the ball and it featured practically zero defense, but the crowd was treated to a ton of buckets, fast breaks, and highlights.The players looked a little tired throughout the second quarter and the scoring dyed down a bit with the teams going into half time tied at 60. The second half featured a back and forth battle until the West made a late push and hung on after an East rally to win 118 to 107.

Top Players

Jordan Hanner (South West Guilford HS)
Jordan came out focused from the beginning and played well on both ends throughout the game. He is a great shooter with limitless range. He gets good elevation on his shot and showed the ability to get to the rim and score with creative finishes. He played both PG and the off-guard today and showed off his passing ability.

Carl Tyson (West Forsyth HS)
Shifty and athletic guard who can get to the rim at will. His ability to both slash to the rim and shoot from the perimeter makes him dangerous and hard to defend.

Brandon Clyburn (South West Guilford HS)
Was a beast on the backboards on both ends tonight and scored multiple times in transition running the floor and finishing above the rim.

Charles Brunson (North Davidson HS)
Strong guard with a solid arsenal of scoring and finishing moves. Has a nice floater in the lane. Comfortable with the ball in his hands.

John Massengill (West Forsyth HS)
Good shooter and scoring guard. Great midrange game. Smart guard who doesn’t force shots- seemed to be in the right place at the right time tonight. Scored 28 points to help his team secure the win.

Forsyth County All-Star Game

2014 Intro: Leron Black

By Justin Byerly

Memphis (TN) White Station has one of the top sophomores in the country, in LeRon Black. The 6-foot-7 forward is ranked 25th by ESPN.com in the class of 2014. I spoke with him yesterday about his recruitment and his goals for the next few years.

Justin Byerly: Do you have a list of possible schools your considering?

LeRon Black: Georgetown, Kansas, Marquette, UNC, Kentucky,UConn and Memphis

Justin Byerly: Which parts of your game are you working to improve as of now?

LeRon Black: My shooting, and ball handling.

Justin Byerly: What are your goals over the next two seasons ?

LeRon Black: Win two state championships. Gain 20 pounds and be in the top 5 for my class and become more spiritual with god.

Justin Byerly: Ok. Sounds good. Your at White Station in Memphis. How is it, since being such a big basketball town, how is the hype for a guy like you? A lot of stress or is it not that bad?

LeRon Black: No its not that much stress, I just try my hardest to play as well as I can against every team and everybody.

Justin Byerly: Great. Who are some players or player, that you try to model your game after?

LeRon Black: Thaddeus Young and Kevin Durant

Justin Byerly: Ok. You have some talent at White Station with Nych Smith and Davell Roby. Are you three real close?

LeRon Black: Yessir really close! Me and Nych went to middle school together.. And we got close with Roby in 8th grade.

Justin Byerly: Ok good. White Station (TN) should be very good next two years. Are you planning any visits soon?

LeRon Black: No, not yet.

By James Blackburn

The ScoutFocus Elite 80 Showcase was held at Greensboro College over the weekend. Plenty of talent was represented with players from the classes of 2015 and up. Over 200 players were present and I did my best to scout every team at least once, but I may of missed some players, to whom I apologize.

There was a dunk contest in the middle of the day in which Craig Hinton (6’6”, SF, East Forsyth HS) took the crown. Plenty of scoring occurred during the day as many of the teams put up over 100 points routinely, as highlight plays seemed to take place every few minutes. Here are the top players I was able to see listed by class.

Top Players by Class

Class of 2014

Cory Hanes, 6’4”, F (High Point Central)

Cory is undersized playing primarily back to the basket, but makes up for lack of height with good upper body strength and playing aggressive. Good rebounder at both ends of the floor. Great use of ball fakes and uses body to shield defender enabling him to score with contact. Plays under the rim but works extremely hard and runs the floor. Showed the ability today at go by defender with dribble drive and finish. Under the radar forward who was one of High Point Central top players this season.

Travis Waldroup-Rodrigues, 6’6”, F (Thomas Jefferson Academy)

Surprise player of the showcase, as this was the first time I had seen Travis play. Big body versatile player with a strong, college ready frame. Good finisher inside- very effective on the offensive end. Good rebounder, who has the ability to grab a defensive rebound and push the ball on the break…score or find the open man. Was a man amongst boys in most of the games today. According to Maxpreps.com, Travis averaged 32 ppg, 10 rpg, and 5.3 asp this season for Thomas Jefferson. Definitely is a player to keep an eye on in the next couple of years.

Larry Curry, 6’2”, PG (East Forsyth HS)

Great size for the PG position- was playing all 5 positions for his team today because of size, strength, and athleticism- but is a true PG. Terrific vision in the open court- throws darts that lead to easy scores for teammates. Good handle. Fast with the ball and excels in transition.

Cody Cox, 6’5”, SF (Southlake Christian Academy)

Very long who runs the floor well. Great slasher who can get to the rim and use length to score. Showed the ability to hit the open 3 as well. Good upside.

Stavian Allen, 6’7”, F (Word of God)

Elite level athleticism. Good rebounder on the defensive end. Versatile player with good hands. Has the potential to be really good.
Highlights

Jaylen Roberston, 6’0”, PG (Word of God)

Next level PG. Quick in the open court. Can break down man off dribble to get into painted area and hit open player.

Class of 2013

Shane Whitfield, 6’5”, G (Word of God)

Strong guard who is a great rebounder. Athletic wing who fills the lanes on the break and can finish. Good slasher and finisher. He said he has offers from Georgia Southern and Bucknell and is receiving interest from ECU, Clemson, and Tennessee.
Highlights

Craig Hinton, 6’6”, SF (East Forsyth HS)

Very athletic wing who plays above the rim (won the dunk contest as well). Above average 3 point shooter who can hit set shots with consistency. Has the ability to dunk over defenders and in traffic. Next level talent.
Highlights

Yousoppha Kane 6’10”, C (Word of God)

Good shot blocker who really hunts the ball- tries to block everything. Long and somewhat raw still on the offensive end. Major upside.

David “Tyler” Rose 6, 6”, SF (Calvary Baptist Day School)

Solid all-around scorer and playmaker. Can shoot off the dribble or with feet set. Athletic- finishes over the rim (came in second in dunk contest today). Surprising athleticism. Versatile player who is D1 caliber player.

Highlights

Josh Newkirk, 6’2”, G (Word of God)

Best player I saw today in my opinion. The game comes easy to him- high understanding of the game. Makes others better around him. Premier on ball-defender- quick hands and feet, contests shots, plays passing lanes. Competes at both ends. Good all-around scorer and can shoot and attack rim. Shifty. Georgia Tech, Tennessee, and NC State have offered.
Highlights

Class of 2012

Vismantas Marijosius, 6’6”, F (North Hills Christian School)

Skilled player who works hard on both ends. Above average shooter and slasher. College bound senior who played well today.

Jonovan Watts, 6’5”, F (C E Jordan HS)

Long and lanky. Smooth. Can handle and shoot the ball well for size. Good defender.

Highlights

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By James Blackburn

Four McGlynn
Photo Source: USA Today

Game Scouted: Lamar vs. Vermont (NCAA Tournament: First Four)
Vermont wins 71-59
Box Score

Four McGlynn (G, 6’2”, FR)

Stats
5-9 FG, 3-5 3pt, 5-6 FT, 3 reb, 27 min, 18 TP

Strengths
Quick feet- on both ends of the floor- showed the ability to stay in front of dribble drive and slide feet quickly- always on his toes ready to move-active. Quick release- excellent shooter with unlimited range- gets feet set with shoulders square- good follow through and good elevation on jump shot- can not leave open (in second part of 1st half- Lamar defended him by having his defender not helping). One of the few players on team with ability to create own shot. Can shoot coming off screens either direction- prefers to come off screens when shooting. Has a scores mentality- provides an instant spark coming off the bench- shot the ball 3 times in his first 2 minutes off the bench and made 2 of the shots. Moves well with out ball and does a good job running by off-ball screens and reading how defense plays it and either curls or fades off screen. Understands help side defense. Underrated quick first step- known primarily as shooter but was able to get into the paint several times and get by defense- has an effective floater when getting into paint. Good on-court demeanor and body language. Has a good overall understanding of the game especially for a freshman- court spacing, patience, smart passing ability, defensive positioning, etc. Calm on line- automatic. Goes ball side on off-ball screens defensively. Underrated passer- better then assists per game average shows. Protects the ball- 0 TO’s this game.

Weaknesses
Size and athleticism hurts him. Plays primarily off the ball and is effective doing so by being a scorer- must improve play making ability- has one thing on his mind and that is to shoot and score the ball. But at his size and with playing below the rim, he is going to need to make the transition to the PG position, if he has any aspirations to play at the next level. Needs to improve ball handling to be able to bring ball up the court with pressure defense- improve left hand- never advanced the ball down court one time this game.

Overview
Leads team in scoring with 12 ppg and FT% (89%) while coming off the bench. Helped the Vermont team to win 23 games and the American East Tournament Championship to earn an NCAA bid. McGlynn was voted the Rookie of the Year award in the American East Conference. Leads all freshman in D1 with FT%.

Even though he is 2G now, I can see him making the transition to the PG. To play in the NBA, he is going to have to become a PG, as he doesn’t have the size or athleticism to defend a shooting guard at the next level. He is definitively capable- his quickness, basketball IQ, passing ability, and protecting the ball will help make the transition easier. He is not a bad ball handler, but will need to continue to improve in this area. The main thing that he is going to have to do is to change his mentality from a scorer to a playmaker. He needs to be able to break man down off dribble and find open man after dribble penetration. If he can make the transition to the PG or even become a combo guard and continue to score the basketball, I can see him playing professionally some where. NBA teams should begin to monitor his progress, as he will most likely be a 4-year guy- truly a diamond in the rough and has a lot of time to continue to improve being a freshman. Will have a chance to play at the big stage as Vermont will now advance to play UNC on Friday in Greensboro, NC. It will be interesting to see how he performs against a taller Reggie Bullock and defends him and Kendall Marshall.


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West Charlotte New Hanover NC State Championship

By Marcus Shockley

A quick rundown of some of the players we saw and noted in the NC high school 2A and 4A championships:

Kennedy Meeks, C, 6’9″, 2013, West Charlotte HS (Charlotte)

Meeks is a high major prospect with multiple offers in hand, and it’s easy to see why when watching him play. He has great hands, able to catch the ball on the move but really excels at going after putback shots, which accounts for a lot of his offense. West Charlotte runs the ball through the high post but didn’t post up Meeks much. Meeks isn’t an above-the-rim explosive player but he’s poised on the court, passes extremely well from the post and rebounds well. Has an uncanny knack for reaching to block shots without fouling.

Trey Foster, PG, 5’10, 2014, West Charlotte HS (Charlotte)

Foster is undersized but a true point, very sure with the ball and can run the team even under pressure. He can bring the ball up against pressure and looks to find open teammates. He still needs to become more consistent shooting from the perimeter.

Kadeem Allan, SG/SF, 6’3″, 2012, New Hanover HS (Wilmington, NC)

An athletic wing with a solid first step, Allan was a force in the second half of the state title game. One of the best athletes in the playoffs and looks like a natural SG/SF who will need to continue to improve ballhandling.

Nigel Holley, PF, 6’7″, 2013, New Hanover HS (Wilmington, NC)

A big smooth forward who looks like he will be physically ready to play at the collegiate level. Slipped under the defense for several nice dunks and looks like he will be able to play the 4 spot effectively. Shot really well from the free throw line.

Thomas Johnson, SG, 6’2″, 2013, New Hanover HS (Wilmington, NC)

Explosive shooting guard who lit up West Charlotte in the first half. Still needs to improve ballhandling at his size in order to play some point. Was very fast up and down the floor but isn’t a true combo guard yet. Super shot from deep and can often beat his man off the dribble just because of his lightning-quick first step.

Sheldon Mitchell, PG, 6’3″, 2014, Cuthbertson HS (Waxhaw, NC)

Sure handed big guard with big time ability to get to the rim and can score in a lot of ways. Rock-solid free throw shooter, his offensive game is using the dribble, getting into the lane and getting off a shot for either a score or drawing the foul. He can also get above the rim and had two open-court dunks. Does not appear to have much perimeter consistency yet and rarely shot from outside.

As the high school season finishes up, unsigned senior basketball players now turn their attention to trying to catch the eye of a college that’s still looking to fill out their class. One of the best ways to do that is to play in the upcoming J.D. Lewis High School Seniors & Post Grad League, where Basketball Elite and several others scouts will attend multiple dates in order to try and see as many players at once as possible.

This event is being organized by the J.D. Lewis staff, so check out the details below:

J.D. LEWIS HIGH SCHOOL SENIORS & POST GRAD LEAGUE

Individual Sign-up

64 Player Limit

Cost: $40/League only $120/League & D2 College Showcase

Will have a draft to make the team!

For more information contact:
Dwayne West at 919-270-0821
dwest@jd-lewis-center.com

Registration: March 10 – April 10, 2012

20 Minute running clock
Subs every 4 minutes
No Coaches

Registration Link Below:
http://www.jd-lewis-center.com/SeniorPostgrad.php