Archive for January, 2013

Full game replay of High Point Christian Academy at Wesleyan, featuring Diante Baldwin, Theo Pinson, Chuck Ogbodo, Harry Giles, JaQuel Richmond, Mike Kobani, Donovan Gilmore, Jackson Kent.

ST. LOUIS (USBWA) – The U.S. Basketball Writers Association has selected Villanova guard Darrun Hilliard as its Oscar Robertson National Player of the Week for games ending the week of Sunday, Jan. 27. The USBWA’s weekly honor is presented by Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook and will be handed out each Tuesday through Feb. 19 this season.

Hilliard

As the Big East Conference Player of the Week, Hilliard was nominated for the weekly award, which was chosen by a representative of the USBWA board of directors from a list of Division I conference players of the week.

Hilliard, a 6-6 sophomore from Bethlehem, Pa., led the Wildcats to wins over a pair of Big East foes ranked among the top five. Last Saturday, he delivered a sensational performance in a 75-71 overtime win over then-No. 3 Syracuse. After scoring 13 of the Wildcats’ first 25 points, he finished the day with 25 points and added career highs in rebounds (7) and assists (6) while not committing a turnover.

Last Tuesday, he was among five players in double figures as Villanova upset then-No. 5 Louisville, 73-64. Hilliard scored 11 points and grabbed four rebounds to average 18.0 points per game and 5.5 rebounds for the week.

This is the fourth season that the USBWA has selected a national player of the week. The weekly Oscar Robertson National Player of the Week will be considered for the Oscar Robertson Trophy watch list, which will be released at mid-season.

Since the 1958-59 season, the USBWA has named a National Player of the Year. In 1998, the award was named in honor of the University of Cincinnati Hall of Famer and two-time USBWA Player of the Year Oscar Robertson. It is the nation’s oldest award and the only one named after a former player.

Oscar Robertson TrophyAt the conclusion of the regular season, the USBWA will name finalists for the award, which is voted on by the entire membership. The winner of the Oscar Robertson Trophy presented by Aflac will be presented by its namesake, Oscar Robertson, at the Devon Energy College Basketball Awards on April 15, 2013, at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City. TheHenry Iba Coach of the Year Award and the Integris Wayman Tisdale Freshman of the Year Award will also be presented at the gala to be held annually the Monday following the NCAA Men’s Final Four.

The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. With some 900 members worldwide, it is one of the most influential organizations in college basketball. It has selected an All-America team since the 1956-57 season. For more information on the USBWA and the Oscar Robertson Trophy, contact executive director Joe Mitch at 314-795-6821.

Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook, the most comprehensive college basketball publication in the world, returns for its 32nd season, bigger and better in 2012-13. Blue Ribbon – long-known as “The Bible of College Basketball” – gives its readers the most thorough, up-to-date and timely evaluations of every Division I team in the country. For more information about Blue Ribbon Yearbooks, visit blueribbonyearbookonline.com.

2012-13 Oscar Robertson National Players of the Week
• Week of Dec. 9: Brandon Paul, Illinois (Big Ten Conference)
• Week of Dec. 16: Doug McDermott, Creighton (Missouri Valley Conference)
• Week of Dec. 23: Victor Rudd, South Florida (Big East Conference)
• Week of Dec. 30: Shabazz Muhammad, UCLA (Pac-12 Conference)
• Week of Jan. 6: Trey Burke, Michigan (Big Ten Conference)
• Week of Jan. 13: Elston Turner, Texas A&M (Southeastern Conference)
• Week of Jan. 20: Roosevelt Jones, Butler (Atlantic 10 Conference)
• Week of Jan. 27: Darrun Hilliard, Villanova (Big East Conference)

Flyin’ To The Hoop 2013

By John O’Malley

Flyin to the Hoop Over Martin Luther King Jr. Weekend, high school hoops was the center of attention in Dayton, Ohio. College coaches and fans from all over the nation came to check out the talent at the 11th annual Flyin’ To The Hoop basketball tournament. The tournament featured 5 of the Top 25 teams in the nation alongside other notable schools. Here were some of the following top recruits, as well as standouts during the tournament:

Beavercreek (Beavercreek, OH)

Jalen Camper (G, 6’4, 2013): A well-rounder guard that understands his importance to his team. Camper is the leading scorer this season for the Beavers and was named co-Greater Western Ohio Conference Player of the Year last season. Picking up where he left off, he is aggressive and always looking to score when get he gets the chance. He is flashy where he can beat defenders to the outside with his dribble or he can drain shots from 3-point range. Decision-making, especially under pressure, has the ability to improve.

Airius Moore (G, 6’0, 2014): Moore mostly runs the point guard position, particularly due to his great ball distribution. Nevertheless, give Moore room and he can create a shot for himself off his dribble. Loves his right-handed floater, which is effective once he breaks down the defense and infiltrates the lane. Effective shooter as he steps into his shot. What stands out the most about Moore is his excellent, loud communication. On both ends of the court, Moore echoes calls, directs teammates, and makes sure everyone is on the same page. Moore is a D1 football prospect.

Dunbar (Dayton, OH)

Amos “AJ” Harris (G, 5’9, 2015): Unbelievably quick guard in various aspects of his game. Harris is an outstanding dribbler with both hands, using it to run the floor in transition and break down the defense when he penetrates from the perimeter. He also corrupts the defense by zipping passes on ball reversals and swinging it to other teammates. Harris steps in and gets a high elevation on his jump shot with a smooth stroke. He has tremendous court vision and defensive awareness. Steps onto the court with an abundance of energy and confidence which motors his teammates and fast style of play. AJ has an offer from Dayton.

Franklin (Franklin, OH)

Luke Kennard (G/F, 6’5, 2015): Greatest attribute about Kennard is that he’s a true scorer. Already as a sophomore, he is able to make shots from downtown, drive baseline to the rim, score off screens and pick-and-rolls, and score in transition. Just when defenders think Kennard won’t score, Kennard gives a little hesitation then pulls up and scorches defenders with his quick trigger. An offensive minded player, but plays solid defense as well.

Travis Larkins (G, 6’0, 2013): Talk about a shooter! Alongside teammate Kennard, Larkins is a lethal punch to opposing defenses. He confidently snipes from deep 3-point range, sometimes even three feet back from the line. His jumper is a soft, beautiful motion from release to follow-thru. Larkins is also a stellar point guard. Cross-overs and pump fakes allow him to navigate, distribute or score anywhere on the floor.

Garfield Heights (Garfield Heights, OH)

Willie Jackson (G/F, 6’5, 2016): There is great potential for Jackson to further his basketball talent and become a notable collegiate prospect. His great athleticism and strong frame allows him to effectively crash the boards. He is smooth to rim, slicing and dicing his way through the teeth of the defense. Solid defender, keeping a low stance and communicating. He has the ability to improve his decision-making, whether that’s making the extra pass to an open teammate or taking it to the hoop himself.

David Bell (F/C, 6’10, 2014): Named to this year’s All-Invitational team, Bell showcased his versatility on the court. His long arms snatched rebounds on both ends. He’s a terrific shot blocker, reading the release of a shot and lifting from the floor on time. His elevation allows him to not only block shots, but to also determinedly finish at the rim for dunks. Bell scores from post touches, favoring his inside spin move.

Al Burge (G, 6’3, 2014): Impacts the game with his great defense. He slides his feet and gives his defender no space to work with. His pressure forces steals and he blocks shots from help defense. Not afraid to compete with the big boys in the paint as he soars to grabs rebounds. Burge competes on the offense end, able to drain 3-pointers and score in transition.

Richard Parker (G, 6’1, 2013): The right-handed scorer puts points on the board from anywhere. The 3-point line is his home where he made all his field goals from. But don’t doubt his athleticism to drive the paint and get to the charity stripe. His assurance of hitting big shots allowed the Bulldogs to stay in the game and hold leads.

HCYA (Houston, TX)

Justin Jackson (G/F, 6’8, 2014): One of the top standouts from this tournament, Jackson scored a total of 73 points and 26 rebounds during the course of two games. His long, skinny wingspan wreaks havoc for opposing teams. Jackson creates his own shot. As he drives to the basket, he can adjust his shot midair, with the use of up-and-unders and floaters. He can post-up and sink shots from 3-point range as well. What impresses me the most is his passing ability. He doesn’t hesitate to give the ball to an open teammate and has excellent accuracy on his passes. Jackson can improve balancing his body during his jump shot and getting stronger, because his frame tends to get bullied around from defensive screeners. As one of the nation’s top juniors, he has narrowed his choices to Arizona, Washington, Texas A&M, Virginia, Ohio State and UNC.

Joshua Hughes (G/F, 6’3, 2014): Excellent, positive teammate. He congratulates teammates when they make good plays and encourages them to keep up competiveness. An athletic offensive player, he makes shots from the perimeter and slashes to the rim by drawing contact or finishing with a nice floater. Hughes has great defense awareness as he reads the eyes of the passer and keeps a low defensive stance.
Joshua “JJ” Decker (G, 6’0, 2015): Very respectful player. Mostly taking mid-range to 3-point field goals, Decker squares up his jumper and follows thru with a good stroke. Great defensive intensity as he strips balls and contests shots.

Huntington Prep (Huntington, WV)

Andrew Wiggins (F, 6’8, 2013): Obviously by now any basketball head knows of Wiggins’ talents and potential. One skill that makes him a valuable prospect is his penetration to the basket. Wiggins has a tremendous spin move to the paint. Or he drives the lane with a profound pro-hop. When Wiggins attacks the hoop, he draws the attention of the defense. His strong upper body allows him to absorb contact to finish or at least send him to the free throw line. As the defense collapses on him, Wiggins dishes passes to open teammates too. His strong body also allows him to easily slide through screens on defense.

Travon Landry (G, 6’1, 2013): Landry reminds me a lot of Peyton Siva. He has excellent ball handling abilities. His quick dribble, cross-overs, and pump fakes allow him to create space on the floor. This skill also gives him open shots. Landry is velocious in transition, easily able to take it coast to coast. He can improve his decision-making in not forcing passes that might not be there. Landry has committed to Tennessee.

Dominic Woodson (F, 6’10, 2013): Woodson is not fazed by any contact. His tough body gives him great advantage over scrawnier post defenders. His post touches consist of keeping low shoulders and brazing his defenders’ body for a weakspot. He has a nice move where he works on the block then turns inside for an easy floater. Woodson has committed to Baylor.

Lakota East (Liberty Township, OH)

Stedman Lowry (G, 6’3, 2013): Scoring the basketball is in this kid’s blood. From off the dribble to spot-ups, Lowry steps into his shot. Bigs rarely screen for Lowry, forcing him to create a shot on his own. He’s a solid dribbler that can navigate the court to find a shot he likes. Besides halfcourt, I don’t think there is any spot on the floor Lowry can’t make from. Lowry has committed to Hillsdale (Mich.) College.

Alex White (C, 6’6, 2015): White is a very fundamental player, but is very effective for the Thunderbirds’ success. This season he is shooting an outstanding 63 percent from the field. He rebounds and chins the ball assertively with two hands. Uses the glass effectively on lay-ups and to finish his post touches. He has great court vision and basketball IQ. Now that he has the basics down, I think there’s a potential of growth he can add to his game.

La Lumiere

Sam Logwood (G/F, 6’6, 2014): Longwood has a non-stop motor and probably the most energy out of all the prospects I’d seen at the tournament. His length makes him so versatile on both ends. With a quick first step, Longwood beats defenders to the outside and infiltrates the paint with low shoulders and determination. His jumper consists of a squared body and range from behind the 3-point line. He’s quick off screens and curls to finish at the rim. He demonstrates emphatic hustle throughout the game, so much as diving for loose balls.

Johnathan Wilkins (F/C, 6’11, 2014): Personally one of my favorite players to watch this tournament. An absolute rebounding machine. His leap is ridiculously high. He soars over opponents grabbing defensive boards with two hands. Offensively, he cleans up misses off the glass with emphatic dunks. He is a great defender who crashes to his opponents’ body to deny passing lanes. On help defense, he quickly traps players or can come over and block shots. He has a variety of polished post moves on offensive and favors a left hook. He also runs very fast in transition for a big man. He is definitely a D1 prospect that should not be slept on.

Munis Tutu (G, 6’0, 2015): Hard-nosed, sturdy guard that won’t allow defenders to push him around. Skilled as a point guard, Tutu isn’t afraid to penetrate to the rim and absorb contact. Nice jumper with mid-range game. Can handle the ball under pressure and in transition. Brings good intensity on defense. His passing accuracy has the ability to improve.

OSNA School (Centereach, NY)

Cheick Diallo (F/C, 6’9, 2015): There is not much to be displeased about Diallo’s game. Impressive, long wingspan makes him flexible on the court. He’s very swift in the paint quickly following the movement of the ball. He looks to post-up or score on a mismatch every time. He attacks the rim and settles for nothing less outside the paint. If he ever is on the perimeter, Diallo goes strong and assertive to the rim for dunks. He also has the capability to knock down from 15 foot range. He’s effective in transition able to methodically run coast to coast. He glides in the air as he lifts off for dunks and rebounds. Lots of potential for Diallo to become one of the top prospects in his class.

Kassoum Yakwe (F, 6’7, 2016): An athletic lefty with a high release on his jumper. Great frame with a long wingspan as well as a bulky upper body. He gets great elevation on his shot and on defense for shot blocks. Offensively, he is beginning to polish good use of ball fakes for jump shots or slashing to the hoop. At his build, he shows the want to work on the post. Nonetheless, he struggles when he’s fed the ball on the block. Hopefully he’ll learn to calm down and develop some post moves over the course of practices and game experience.

Prime Prep (Dallas, TX)

Emmanuel Mudiay (G, 6’5, 2014): One of the top junior prospects, Mudiay doesn’t settle for contested shots. Playing mostly at point guard, he’s determined to use pump fakes and dribble actions to get to the rim. Don’t doubt his ability to jump either! He had multiple posturizing dunks throughout his two games. He’s a solid defender, on-ball pressuring his opponent and telegraphing passes for steals. Mudiay has offers from Kentucky, Arizona, Baylor, Kansas, Missouri, Texas, Oklahoma State, SMU and other schools.

Jordan Mickey (F, 6’8, 2013): Mickey’s defense is textbook material. Body-to-body defender who gives his opponents no space to breath. He deflects and strips passes for steals and reads jumpers for blocks. A total workhorse who aggressively snatches rebounds defensively and crashes the glass for putbacks. Mickey has committed to LSU.

Karvair Shepherd (G/C, 6’10, 2013): Versatile big man who affects the game in different ways. His outstanding, muscular frame takes up space on the block. He shoots high percentage shots in the paint. His post-up moves are executed a little slow, but the motions are a sure sign. Shepherd is competitive on defense, denying anything in the paint. His balance on his outside jump shot still has room to improve. Shepherd has committed to TCU.

Elijah Thomas (F, 6’8, 2015): Thomas is a very fascinating prospect for his time of production on the court. Strong upper body, willing to take any contact and finish. Get caught slipping on defending Thomas and he will slam it in the hoop. He hardly backs down on his post-ups. Thomas has offers from Illinois, NC State, Oklahoma and Texas A&M.

Roselle Catholic (Roselle, NJ)

Tyler Roberson (F, 6’8, 2013): Roberson is a fun player to watch. He has many tangibles that make him a great scorer. He rises above his defenders when he elevates on jump shots. He’s got a high release and solid follow-thru. His great athleticism allows him to explode off the court when he attacks the hoop. He hustles on each possession. A low defender, keeping his arms spread and closing out with high hands. I can see improvements in his consistency to keep a balanced jump shot, especially when he’s contested, and also rebound the ball with two hands. Very respectful and coachable player. Roberson has committed to Syracuse.

Malachi Richardson (G, 6’6, 2015): Richardson fascinates opposing defenses with his scorer ability. It’s difficult to guard him, since he’s so athletic and physical. His strong upper body allows him to absorb contact when he finishes at the basket. His legs lift his jumper and release over his defenders’ closeouts. He infiltrates pump fakes and cross-overs to create room for himself. He’s a great spot up jumper too. Runs great in transition and can knock it down from the 3-point line. Richardson has offers from Cincinnati, Indiana, Rutgers, Seton Hall, Miami (FL) and James Madison.

Asante Gist (G, 5’10, 2016): Gist is regarded as one of the top point guard in his class. As he gains more experience over the coming years, I can see a bright development from where his game’s at now. He’s a great passer, placing the ball exactly into each players shooting pocket. He knows when to use bounce passes, reverse the ball, and make other important decisions to flow the offense. He directs the floor and calls the plays for the Lions. Gist also creates his own shot and is willing to drive into the heart of the defense.

Chris Obame (F/C, 6’8, 2015): With a long body, he is a workhorse. He crashes the glass very well. However, he wastes lots of energy trying to do things that can easily be cleaned up. For example, he is excellent about competing for rebounds. But when a shot is up in the air, Obame should focus on planting a strong box out, going up and assertively grabbing that rebound with two hands. He has quick feet and agility. In his offensive system, he sets lots of screens; I would’ve liked to see more post-ups from him.

St. Vincent-St. Mary (Akron, OH)

Jalen Hudson (F, 6’6, 2014): I see a lot of allure when Hudson plays. He’s very fast and can outrun anyone in transition. His elevation is out of this world! He had several standout dunks, whether it came from transition or from attacking the rim. If he’s not slashing, he can settle with buckets from the 3-point line. Excellent defensive pressure, staying body to body with his man. Solid rebounder as well. Hudson has offers for Akron and Kent State.

VJ King (G, 6’7, 2016): Jab-steps and pump fakes work well in getting open shots from himself or distributing the rock to other teammates. King is a very swift player, able to navigate the court with his great agility. With great mechanics and squared shoulders, he knocks down mid-range to 3-point pull-ups. I would’ve liked to seen him penetrate the paint more often. He tends to work around the pack line at the beginning of games, then eventually becomes comfortable enough to explore the paint. He needs to turn up from tip-off to the final buzzer. King has offers from Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, Wisconsin and Illinois.

Springboro (Springboro, OH)

Maverick Morgan (C, 6’11, 2013): Morgan makes it look simple to play the center position. He has his mechanics down pat when he uses glass on offense for bankshots and finishes around the paint. He has a nifty spin move that catches defenses off-guard. Morgan can also back down from his post and hit a 13 foot jumper. Very unselfish player as he kicks passes out to open teammates on the perimeter. His passing is very quick and accurate. When he contests shots on defense, Morgan keeps a vertical position, not leaning or fouling. He boxes-out with urgency too. Morgan is committed to Illinois.
Trotwood-Madison (Trotwood, OH)

Jamar Hammonds (G, 6’4, 2013): He reminds me of former Tennessee guard Scotty Hopson. Very fast guard who loves to slash to the rim. His muscular frame slices through the thick of the defense. He’s great in the open-court and in transition, controlling the ball and using quick dribble actions to take it to the hoop. Glides in midair and able to adjust his shot mid-air once he elevates. Very efficient from the free throw line too.

Dezhontae Bennett (G, 6’2, 2014): Bennett and teammate Hammonds are the Bonnie & Clyde for the Rams. If one is struggling, the other will pick up and energize the team. They feed off each other’s momentum. As for Bennett, he’s a very well-rounded player. He steps into his jump shots with balance and stride. In addition to screens, he can free up space for himself to create his own shot. His legs are a springboard allowing him to throw down dunks. Great pressure defense, contesting for interceptions of passes and even blocks. Not afraid to crash boards either.
Walnut Hills (Cincinnati, OH)

Isaiah Johnson (C, 6’9, 2013): His big body provides brick wall defense. Johnson works hard defensively in the paint, laterally sliding his feet and positioning his body for denial of post-feeds. He is excellent at boxing-out and putting himself in position for rebounds. He walls-up defenders without leaning over or fouling them. Offensively, he keeps a low stance and settles for smart, high percentage shots. Loves his right-handed sweep hook and works toward the midline of the paint. One downside to his game is a low elevation from his jump. Johnson has committed to Akron.
Dontonio “DJ” Wingfield (G, 6’6, 2013): Smooth player in offensive transition. Keeps cool, calm, and collective when he drives to the hoop. His strong, broad shoulders provide a great finish in coast to coast transition. He has a squared, balanced jumper with a high arc. Distributes the ball with crisp, sharp passes. He crashes to offensive boards and has great stamina as well. Wingfield has committed to Ohio.

J.F. Webb HS takes on undefeated Mt. Tabor HS, featuring UNC 2013 signee Isaiah Hicks, Brown commit Matty Madigan, Deion Robinson, Mitron Terry, Stefan Cates, Nate Long, TyQuan Bitting, Lepreece Lynch.

Highlights of Charlotte Christian taking on Greenfield (NC) on January 21, 2013. Features Patrick Rooks, Jaime Johnson, Ashley Williams, Matthew Fisher-Davis.

Wesleyan Christian Academy at Forsyth Country Day on January 15, 2013. Features Harry Giles, Theo Pinson, Colton Bishop, Donovan Gilmore, Trey Mitchell, Deshaunte Carelock, Corey Hanes and Michael Buckland.

Play by play audio was problematic and had to be dropped for this replay.

C.J. Leslie Scouting Report
By James Blackburn

Game Scouted: NC State @ Wake Forest

Wake Wins 86-84

Box Score

CJ Leslie (6’9”, F, JR)

Stats
18 min, 5-9 FG, 3-6 FT, 5 reb, 2 TO, 1 blk, 4 PF, 13 TP

Strengths
Despite playing just a little over half of the minutes he averages, Leslie made the most with his time on the floor and scored several key baskets for State. On the offensive side of the ball, Leslie was virtually unguardable in one-on-one situations. He is a big time above-the-rim athlete with good quickness and explosiveness for a PF. He uses his quick first step to drive around most defenders his size where he can score around the rim. He showed an array of mid-post moves using jab steps, spin moves, fakes, and sweeping through, to get by his defender and to the rim where he was able to score at a good rate because of his athleticism. At his best offensively in isolation situations in the mid-post and short corner areas where he can face the basket and has room and time to create offense for himself. Wake had to send the double team after scoring with single defender several times. Also showed a nice high half-hook late in the second half. Went 3-6 from FT line this game, made his first two. He does a nice job of using his legs on the line and shot has good arc.

Defensively, he has the tools to be good defender. Played last 10 minutes of game with 4 fouls without picking up 5th and even had a blocked shot in that stretch. Has potential to be good shot blocker at next level with his length and athleticism. Solid rebounder, especially on the defensive end, where he is averaging over 5 rebounds a game on that end of the floor.

Weaknesses
Defensively is where Leslie struggles the most. This is not because of lack of speed, quickness, or size, but is mostly due to lack of effort (low motor), strength, and positioning. On the games opening defensive series he didn’t close out on an open perimeter shot and let Moto have a wide open 18’ shot. Doesn’t seem to exert any more energy then he has to. Low motor on both ends. Not effective with out the ball in this game tonight. Poor screener. Needs to get lower in his defensive stance- got beat off the dribble several times this game partly because he was not low enough or didn’t stay in good defensive stance. He tends to fall for too many fakes and gets thrown off balance too easily. This contributed to his foul troubles tonight. He picked up his 4th foul with 17 minutes to go in the second half, after picking up his first 2 half way through the first half. He also tends to get into foul trouble because he is too often out of position and tries to recover late and go for the block or highlight defensive play. Was called for two goal tending violations in the second half- both were obvious and were not smart decisions on his part.
Offensively, he was excellent in the mid post area, but struggled to secure deep post position mainly because of poor lower body strength. He was getting pushed and bumped off line too easily in the paint and needs to get stronger. Ball handling needs to improve also, handle is too loose. Had a couple of TO’s early in the game and showed visible frustration.

Did not attempt any shots outside of 10 feet this game, besides FT’s. Is shooting 55% from the field so far for the season, which is mainly because most of those shots are coming in the paint. Has only attempted 4 three-pointers on the season and has made 1. He is shooting under 30% from beyond the arc for his career with just under 50 total attempts. He needs to improve his range and his outside shooting consistency. FT shooting needs to improve a bit as well. To his credit he is shooting 64% for the year , which is almost 5 percentage points better then last year. He missed 2 FT’s this game with under 30 seconds to with a chance to go up 1. His elbow sticks out to a degree which leads to inconsistent misses on both sides of the rim.

His motor needs to be higher. Body language was poor during most of game. Argued with officials on several calls and showed visible frustration at several points. Looked like he was coasting and going through motions at several points.

Overview
One of the worst games I have seen Leslie play, but he still managed to score in double figures and grab 5 rebounds in under 20 minutes of playing because of foul trouble. He did impress however with his performance in last 4 minutes of game…playing with 4 fouls during which he had several big baskets and rebounds.

When Leslie plays hard and with determination, he is one of top draft prospects in country. He has the tools, solid upside, and the offensive arsenal to contribute at next level as a PF. His athleticism, quickness for his position, and ability to face the basket in the mid-post will translate to the next level, and is part of the reason he is considered to be a first round pick in several mock drafts. It will be interesting to see if his motor and effort improve as the team enters conference play.

James Blackburn is the Director of Scouting for Basketball Elite and shares his reports with several NBA teams. You can follow James on Twitter right this second.

ST. LOUIS (USBWA) – The U.S. Basketball Writers Association has selected Butler forward Roosevelt Jones as its Oscar Robertson National Player of the Week for games ending the week of Sunday, Jan. 20. The USBWA’s weekly honor is presented by Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook and will be handed out each Tuesday through Feb. 19 this season.

Jones

As the Atlantic 10 Conference Co-Player of the Week, Jones was nominated for the weekly award, which was chosen by a representative of the USBWA board of directors from a list of Division I conference players of the week.

Jones, a 6-4 sophomore from O’Fallon, Ill., hit one of the season’s most memorable shots to give the Bulldogs a dramatic 64-63 win over No. 8 Gonzaga in front of a national primetime ESPN audience and a packed Hinkle Fieldhouse with “College GameDay” on hand.

With the short-handed Bulldogs trailing by a point, Jones came up with a steal at midcourt, drove toward the basket and hit a floater from 10 feet as the final buzzer sounded. With leading scorer Rotnei Clarke sidelined, Jones led the Bulldogs with 20 points, while adding five rebounds, four assists, one block and one steal in the win, Butler’s third over over a Top 10 team this season.

Earlier in the week, Jones recorded his second double-double of the season, helping Butler to a conference win over Richmond. He finished with 10 points, a caeeer-high 12 rebounds, four assists and three steals.

This is the fourth season that the USBWA has selected a national player of the week. The weekly Oscar Robertson National Player of the Week will be considered for the Oscar Robertson Trophy watch list, which will be released at mid-season.

Since the 1958-59 season, the USBWA has named a National Player of the Year. In 1998, the award was named in honor of the University of Cincinnati Hall of Famer and two-time USBWA Player of the Year Oscar Robertson. It is the nation’s oldest award and the only one named after a former player.

Oscar Robertson TrophyAt the conclusion of the regular season, the USBWA will name finalists for the award, which is voted on by the entire membership. The winner of the Oscar Robertson Trophy presented by Aflac will be presented by its namesake, Oscar Robertson, at the Devon Energy College Basketball Awards on April 15, 2013, at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City. TheHenry Iba Coach of the Year Award and the Integris Wayman Tisdale Freshman of the Year Award will also be presented at the gala to be held annually the Monday following the NCAA Men’s Final Four.

The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. With some 900 members worldwide, it is one of the most influential organizations in college basketball. It has selected an All-America team since the 1956-57 season. For more information on the USBWA and the Oscar Robertson Trophy, contact executive director Joe Mitch at 314-795-6821.

Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook, the most comprehensive college basketball publication in the world, returns for its 32nd season, bigger and better in 2012-13. Blue Ribbon – long-known as “The Bible of College Basketball” – gives its readers the most thorough, up-to-date and timely evaluations of every Division I team in the country. For more information about Blue Ribbon Yearbooks, visit blueribbonyearbookonline.com.

2012-13 Oscar Robertson National Players of the Week
• Week of Dec. 9: Brandon Paul, Illinois (Big Ten Conference)
• Week of Dec. 16: Doug McDermott, Creighton (Missouri Valley Conference)
• Week of Dec. 23: Victor Rudd, South Florida (Big East Conference)
• Week of Dec. 30: Shabazz Muhammad, UCLA (Pac-12 Conference)
• Week of Jan. 6: Trey Burke, Michigan (Big Ten Conference)
• Week of Jan. 13: Elston Turner, Texas A&M (Southeastern Conference)
• Week of Jan. 20: Roosevelt Jones, Butler (Atlantic 10 Conference)

Nigel Williams-Goss Findlay Prep
Nigel Williams-Goss and Findlay Prep overtake #1 in the rankings. Photo Source: PrepForce

By Marcus Shockley

This national high school basketball ranking combines multiple available polls for a period of time into a single poll, and creates a ranking for each team based on their average ranking, number of times they are ranked in the various polls, the highest ranking that teams has in those polls and the position ranking out of all ranked teams for the period. Read more about today’s cumulative ranking below.

School Location High AVG Qty TrueRank™
1. Findlay Prep Henderson,NV 1 1 4 34.250
2. Whitney Young Magnet HS Chicago,IL 1 3 4 31.750
3. Montverde Academy Montverde,FL 2 3 4 31.500
4. Lone Peak HS West Highland,UT 3 4 4 30.000
5. St. Benedict Prep Newark,NJ 2 6 4 28.000
6. La Lumiere School La Porte,IN 3 6 4 27.500
7. Prime Prep Academy Dallas,TX 5 9 4 23.500
8. Mater Dei HS Santa Ana,CA 4 9 4 23.250
9. St. Anthony HS Jersey City,NJ 6 9 4 23.250
10. Desoto HS Dallas,TX 7 9 4 22.250
11. Simeon HS Chicago,IL 10 11 4 19.500
12. Poly HS Long Beach,CA 9 11 4 19.250
13. Huntington Prep Huntington,WV 9 12 4 18.500
14. Oak Hill Academy Mouth of Wilson,VA 10 12 4 18.250
15. Bishop Montgomery Torrance,CA 14 14 4 14.250
16. Omaha Central HS Omaha,NE 11 14 3 13.333
17. Lake Oswego HS Lake Oswego,OR 13 16 4 12.000
18. Iowa City West HS Iowa City,IA 15 16 4 11.750
19. Pershing HS Detroit,MI 17 21 4 4.750
20. Blanche Ely HS Pompano Beach,FL 19 21 4 4.500
21. Paul VI HS Fairfax,VA 19 20 3 2.667
22. Midwest City HS Midwest City,OK 16 23 3 -0.333
23. Germantown HS Germantown,WI 21 22 3 -0.667
24. St. John Bosco Los Angeles,CA 21 23 3 -1.667
25. Olympic HS Charlotte,NC 21 21 2 -6.000
26. Bishop Gorman HS Las Vegas,NV 19 22 2 -7.000
27. Columbia HS Decatur,GA 22 24 2 -11.500
28. Blue Valley Northwest HS Overland Park,KS 24 26 2 -15.500
29. Bishop O’Connell Arlington,VA 19 19 1 -21.000
30. Gonzaga HS Washington,DC 20 20 1 -24.000

Notes:
After running a close #2 all season, Findlay Prep gets two big events that pushed them into the #1 spot. Findlay beat previous #1 Montverde in a head to head match up at the Hoophall Classic, but Montverde had already dropped a game over the same weekend. Nigel Williams-Goss made his latest case to be included as an All-American in the win. Meanwhile, more shakeups down the rankings as several teams who had high initial rankings or scored big upsets early in the season stumble. Most curious is the case of Huntington Prep, which has lost 2 games but still ranked very high in some of the polls, or more specifically, ESPN. Olympic continues to climb in the national rankings and Paul VI continues to surge back up into several polls.

This week’s poll includes four sources: Hoopniks, ESPN, USA Today and PrepNation. MaxPreps also released polls during this period but I haven’t included them, due to the fact that they segment private academies from public high schools. I am not sure how, or if, I will incorporate their rankings back into the cumulative rankings.

Finally: In the poll listing, the ‘high’ value represents the highest ranking in any poll that team received during the ranking period.
‘Qty’ represents how many polls they were ranked in. ‘AVG’ represents their average ranking in all polls where they were ranked.

Want to know more? You can follow Marcus Shockley on Twitter, right this second.

TrueRank is ™ and © 2013 Neptune Media Group, LLC.

Tom Izzo

OKLAHOMA CITY, OK — Michigan State basketball coach Tom Izzo, an eight-time national Coach of the Year and the longest-tenured Big Ten men’s basketball coach ever, will be honored at the 2013 Devon Energy College Basketball Awards April 15 in Oklahoma City as the recipient of the Wayman Tisdale Humanitarian Award.

Izzo, who has spent nearly two decades as the head coach at Michigan State and has led his team to a national championship and six trips to the Final Four, will be honored the same night as the Oscar Robertson Player of the Year, Henry Iba Coach of the Year, and Wayman Tisdale Freshman of the Year. The event will be held at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City and is presented by Devon Energy and produced by Access Sports, an Oklahoma City based non-profit charitable foundation.

The Tisdale Humanitarian Award honors an individual involved in college basketball who has made a significant positive impact on society. Legendary ESPN and hall of fame announcer Dick Vitale received the inaugural award in 2011 and Duke Coach Mike Krzyzewski was honored last year. The award’s namesake, Wayman Tisdale, died in May 2009 after a two-year battle with cancer.

“Few coaches in collegiate athletics have endured and excelled like Tom Izzo,” says David Gillikin, 2012 chairman of the Wayman Tisdale Freshman of the Year Award Advisory Board. “His record of achieving the highest levels of success on the court together with his focus and success in graduating his players and positively impacting the community make him the ideal selection and adds another very significant name to the growing list of Tisdale Humanitarian honorees.”

Coach Izzo’s focus on helping his players to be successful students as well as successful athletes has helped him achieve an 80 percent graduation rate among players who complete their eligibility. In addition, Izzo is also an active volunteer in the community. Among his many efforts, he is very involved in raising funds for Coaches Vs. Cancer, Volunteers of America,Sparrow Hospital, and the V Foundation for Cancer Research. In 2009, Izzo was presented the Coaches Vs. Cancer Champion Award, recognizing his work and leadership in the fight to save lives from cancer making his selection very appropriate for the Tisdale honor.

As a college player at the University of Oklahoma from 1983 to 1985, Wayman Tisdale was a three-time Big Eight Conference Player of the Year and the first player in collegiate history to be named a first-team All American by the Associated Press in his freshman, sophomore, and junior seasons. He still holds the record at Oklahoma for the most points scored by any player through his freshman and sophomore seasons. He won a gold medal as a member of the 1984 U.S. Olympic basketball team coached by Bobby Knight. After an All-American career at OU, Wayman set off for the NBA where the Indiana Pacers made him the second overall pick in the 1985 NBA Draft. He went on to play for several NBA teams.

In 1997 Tisdale retired to focus on his musical career, what he often called his “first love”. In March 2007, Tisdale underwent treatment for cancer in his knee (osteosarcoma). In August of that year, Tisdale had part of his right leg amputated because of the bone cancer. Tisdale died on the morning of May 15, 2009 at St. John Medical Center in Tulsa, where his wife had taken him when he had trouble breathing. On May 21, 2009, 4,000 mourners attended Tisdale’s memorial service in Tulsa.

The Devon Energy College Basketball Awards are presented by Devon Energy, a leading independent oil and natural gas exploration and production company based in Oklahoma City.

The event is produced by Access Sports, an Oklahoma City-based 501(c)(3) non-profit organization committed to supporting various charitable causes, including funding prosthetic devices for needy individuals through the Wayman L. Tisdale Foundation, funding of youth basketball programs throughout the state of Oklahoma through the Wayman’s Lightning Basketball League, and other worthy charitable causes.

Tables and sponsorship information are available for the April 15 event at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum at the Tisdale Award website, www.collegebasketballawards.com, or by calling Scott Hill at 405-640-0406 or via e-mail at scott.hill@access-sports.net.