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Published by The HOOP SCOOP, Inc., P.O. Box 37122, Louisville, KY 40233
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Editor & Publisher: Clark Francis | All rights reserved - Copyright 2016


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GRASSROOTS BASKETBALL SPRING & SUMMER SEASONS JUST AROUND THE CORNER:  EXPECTED T BE A LOT MORE INTERESTING THIS TIME AROUND 

Published on March 31, 2014 by Clark Francis

We expect things to be a lot more interesting this spring and summer now that adidas has decided to step up to the plate once again and go head-to-head with NIKE with a superstar oriented camp, which will held in early July in Chicago, IL, and a grassroots basketball league, which will be held in Dallas, TX, Indianapolis, IN, and Orlando, FL during the course of the spring and will cumulate at the end summer with all of the top teams advancing to the adidas 64 Tournanent in Las Vegas, NV.  And to make things even more interesting is the fact the LeBron James Skills Academy, which has taken place during a dead period for NCAA Division I college coaches each of the last two years, will take place during the first live weekend in July and will be held at the same time as the adidas Unrivaled Camp and the Reebok Breakout Classic in Philadelphia, PA.  As things stand right now, I plan to cover both the LeBron James Skills Academy and the adidas Univaled Camp, but, in order to keep up with our tradition of attending all of the superstar oriented camps, I may also attempt to work the Reebok Breakout Classic into may schedule.  However, I suspect that I will have a great handle on things long before we get to this point, as I have nearly every weekend booked to cover grassroots basketball events between now and the end of June.

But before I start laying the groundwork for the future, I think it's also noteworthy from a credibility stand point to mention that I will be in attendance at my 42 consecutive NCAA Final Four when I step off the plane in just a couple of days in Dallas, TX, and I will have be in attendance at my 133, 134, and 135 consecutive NCAA Final Four Games, which includes nine Third Place Games from 1973 until 1981 when I walk into the area on Saturday afternoon and Monday night.  And right after that things will really get crazy, as I plan to attend the Hoop Group Spring Jam Fest at Spooky Nook Sports, which will be held on April 11th-13th in Manheim, PA; the Kentucky Derby Festival Basketball Classic, which will be held on April 18th in Louisville,. KY; the Jayhawk Invitational, which will be held on April 25th-27th; the John Lucas Resources Future of the Game - West, which will feature Top 5th and 6th Graders and be held on May 3rd and 4th in Las Vegas, NV; the John Lucas Resources International Combine, which will will feature Top 7th and 8th Graders and be held on May 10th-11th in Houston, TX; the adidas Invitational Tournament, which will be held on May 16th-18th in Indianapolis, IN; the NIKE EYBL Session #4, which will be held on May 24th-26th in Minneapolis, MN; the Pangos All-American Camp, which will be held on May 30th-June 1st in Long Beach, CA; the Warriors Elite Prospect Exposure Hoop Camp and the Warriors Elite Summer Superfest, which will held on June 6th-8th in Houston, TX; the NBA Players Association Top 100 Camp, which will be held on June 17th-22nd in Charlottesville, VA; the Legends League National Championship, which will be held  on June 27th-29th in Louisville, KY, and/or the John Lucas Future of the Game-East, which will feature Top 5th and 6th Graders and be held in Hampton, VA on June 28th-29th; and the High Potential "Blue- Chip" Basketball Camp, which will be held on June 29th-July 3rd at Georgetown College in Georgetown, KY.

My goal is to see a little bit of everything, as the Hoop Group Spring Jam Fest at Spooky Nook Sports and Jayhawk Invitational will give me an early look at a lot of the top Under Armour Teams; all of the John Lucas Resources Camps will provide a great head start on the future; the adidas Invitational Tournament and the NIKE EYBL Session #4 will provide an excellent opportunity to see all of the top players on those two circuits; and the Pangos All-American Camp and the NBA Players Association Top 100 Camp will allow us to see some interesting match-ups with regards to the top players going head-to-head against one another.  I also will get a chance to see some things in my backyard, like the Kentucky Derby Festival Basketball Classic,  the Legends League National Championship, and the High Potential "Blue- Chip" Basketball Camp.  However, I will not get a chance to do so in July, because, quite honestly, the 16,-Under, 17-Under and 19-Under AAU Nationals, which will be held simultaneously on July 22nd-28th in Louisville, KY, can't compete with the adidas Super 64, the Las Vegas, NV 48, and the Big Foot Las Vegas Classic, all of which will be taking place July 23rd-July 27th in Las  Vegas, NV.  I also plan to cover the above mentioned shoe company sponsored camps during July 8th-13th; the AAU Boys Basketball 14-Under Nationals , which will be held on July 10th-16rh in Kissimmee, FL the NIKE EYBL Finals at the Peach Jam, which will be held in North Augusta, SC on July 16th-20th; the Las Vegas Jr Fab 48, which will be held on July 26th-29th  at Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas, NV;  the Jr Phenom Camp, which will be held on July 31st-August 3rd at Alliant University in San Diego, CA, and/or the Adidas Nations Global Finals, which will be held on July 31st-August in Los Angeles, CA; and the adidas Jr Super Camp, which will be held on August 8th-10th in Atlanta, GA.

Obviously this is a very ambitious schedule, but it is very important for you the reader, because nobody covers grassroots basketball like we do and this will be my 32nd consecutive summer on the road providing my subscribers with a great overview of what is actually happening.  So,. with this mind, this is the perfect time to either subscribe or renew your subscription.

We also encourage you to check out a complete calendar of Future Dates & Events, which includes all of the camps, tournaments, and Jam Fests that fall under the  Hoop Group umbrella; the long list of events that Big Shots has lined up for this spring and summer, and all of the Five-Star Basketball Camps that are located across the country and are sure to attract those players who still understand that teaching is the name of the game and want to get better.  However, to do so you need to subscribe to the paid section and there is no time like the present to do so.

PHILLY AREA JUNIOR CLASS STILL ON TRACK TO ACHIEVE GREATNESS

Published on March 25, 2014 by Clark Francis

We've been telling you for years that the Class of 2015 in the Philadelphia/Eastern Pennsylvania/Eastern Pennsylvania/South Jersey Area is on track to achieve greatness and a quick look at Allen Rubin's 10 All-Area Teams adds even more fuel to our fire, as 40% of the 50 above mentioned players are current juniors.  We're talking about 6'6 Jr Derrick Jones from Radnor (Archbishop Carroll) PA, 7'1 Jr Georgios Papagiannis from West Chester (Westtown School) PA, 6'4 Jr Chris Clover from Philadelphia (St. Joseph's Prep) PA, 6'4 Jr Levan Alston from Haverford (School) PA, 6'8 Jr Tim Delaney from Pitman (H.S.) NJ, 6'4 Jr Samir Doughty from Philadelphia (Communications Tech) PA, 6'8 Jr Michael Watkins from Philadelphia (Math, Civics, & Science) PA, 6'0 Jr Traci Carter from Philadelphia (Roman Catholic) PA, 6'4 Jr Malik Ellison from Burlington (Life Center) NJ, 6'9 Jr Ernest Aflakpui from Radnor (Archbishop Carroll) PA, 5'11 Jr Lamar Kimble from Philadelphia (Nuemann-Goretti) PA, 6'6 Jr Ahmad Gilbert from Philadelphia (Constitution) PA, 6'4 Jr Tyler Kohl from Pennsburg (Perkiomen) PA, 5'11 Jr Sam Foreman from Philadelphia (Roberts Vaux) PA, 6'4 Jr Sean Lloyd from Havernford (School) PA, 6'1 Jr Jahaad Procter from Harrisburg (H.S.) PA, 6'1 Jr Jake Silpe from Cherry Hill (East) NJ, 6'2 Jr Devon Moore from McSherryville (Delone Catholic) PA, 6'3 Jr Milik Gantz from Harrisburg (Bishop McDevitt) PA, 6'6 Jr Trevaughn Wilkerson from Philadelphia (Roman Catholic) PA.  And those first two also will likely be McDonald's All-American's and potential NBA Players.

The Class of 2015 also has more than its normal share of size, as 13 of the top 40-ranked players are inside guys.  We're talking about 7'1 Jr Georgios Papagiannis from West Chester (Westtown School) PA, 6'8 Jr Tim Delaney from Pitman (H.S.) NJ, 6'8 Jr Michael Watkins from Philadelphia (Math, Civics, & Science) PA, 6'9 Jr Ernest Aflakpui from Radnor (Archbishop Carroll) PA, 6'6 Jr Trevaughn Wilkerson from Philadelphia (Roman Catholic) PA, 6'8 Jr Mustafa Traore from Malvern (Phelps School) PA, 6'7 Jr Paulius Zalys from Pennsburg (Perkiomen School) PA, 6'7 Jr Dave Krompotich from Wyndmoor (La Salle) PA, 6'7 Jr Markos Baez from Burlington (Doane Academy) NJ, 6'8 Jr Derrick Woods from Fairless Hills (Pennsbury) PA, 6'7 Jr Jack Conner from Reading (Berks Catholic) PA, 6'6 Jr Jules Brown from Ardmore (Lower Merion) PA, and 6'6 Jr Manny Taylor from Philadelphia (Roman Catholic) PA and the two centers on this list (Papagiannis and Aflakpui) are already prime recruiting targets of a lot big time schools.

The Class of 2015 also has some quality outside shooters with the likes of 6'4 Jr Chris Clover from Philadelphia (St. Joseph's Prep) PA, 6'3 Jr Levan Alston from Haverford (School) PA, and 6'4 Jr Malik Ellison from Burlington (Life Center) PA and a number of guys who are capable of playing point guard, including 6'4 Jr Samir Doughty from Philadelphia (Communications Tech) PA, 6'0 Jr Traci Carter from Philadelphia (Roman Catholic) PA, 5'11 Jr Lamar Kimble from Philadelphia (Neuamnn-Goretti) PA, 5'11 Jr Sam Foreman from Philadelphia (Roberts Vaux) PA, 6'2 Jr Jake Silpe from Cherry Hill (East) NJ, 6'3 Jr Milik Gantz from Harrisburg (Bishop McDevitt) PA, 5'11 Jr Kimar Williams from Philadelphia (Constitution) PA, 6'2 Cam Jones from Fairless Hills (Pennsbury) PA, and 5'10 Jr Tim Rose from Scanton (Prep) PA, all of whom are good enough to get recruited at some level on the Division I spectrum.

And, of course, this class also has plenty of depth, as there are at least 40 players on Rubin's that will get recruited by schools at the Division I level.  However, 6'8 Jr Tim Delaney from Pitman (H.S.) NJ and 6'8 Jr Michael Watkins from Philadelphia (Math, Civics, & Science) PA are already off the board, as the former has already decided to stay close to home and attend Villanova and the latter is alerady bound for Penn State.  As for some of the other top players on Rubin's list, it looks like Syracuse, Kentucky, Kansas, Maryland, Arizona, North Carolina, Connecticut, Villanova, Temple, St. Joseph's, Xavier and UCLA are among the schools that have shown the most early interest in 6'6 Jr Derrick Jones from Radnor (Archbishop Carroll) PA.  The list for 7'1 Jr Georgios Papagiannis from West Chester (Westtown School) PA already includes Maryland, Pittsburgh, Penn State, Rutgers, Temple, Villanova, St. Joseph's, and La Salle.  Villanova, Temple, St. Joseph's Drexel, and Rider have already offered 6'4 Jr Chris Clover from Philadelphia (St. Joseph's Prep) PA and Penn State, Rhode Island, La Salle, Temple, St. Joseph's, and Pennsylvania are the early leaders for 6'3 Jr Levan Alston from Haverford (School) PA.  The three schools showing the most interest in 6'4 Jr Samir Doughty from Philadelphia (Communications Tech) PA are Villanova, Temple, and La Salle and Pittsburgh, Iowa, Drexel, La Salle, Cincinnati, and Penn State make up a very interesting list of 6'0 Jr Traci Carter from Philadelphia (Roman Catholic) PA.  St. Joseph's has shown 6'4 Jr Malik Ellison from Burlington (Life Center) NJ the most early interest, but he's grown six inches in the last year-and-a-half and, if that trend continues, his list may end up being a Who's Who of High Major Schools.

This also is a good place to point out that Class of 2015 in the Philadelphia/Eastern Pennsylvania/South Jersey area would be even stronger if 6'8 Jr Horace Spencer hadn't transferred from Warminster (William Tennant) PA to Henderson (Findlay Prep) NV.  On the other hand, Spencer, who previously was the #1-ranked player in area's junior class, was immediately replaced by 7'1 Jr Georgios Papagiannis from West Chester (Westtown School) PA, who arrived last fall from Athens, Greece and is now ranked #2 on our list right behind 6'6 Jr Derrick Jones from Radnor (Archbishop Carroll) PA.

The Class of 2014 is mediocre at best, but it has been helped by the fact that Villanova-bound 6'7 Mikal Bridges from Malvern (Great Valley) PA came ome out of nowhere (he previously was ranked #57 in the class on Rubin's last report) to be ranked #2 on this list and also is now ranked among the top 100 seniors nationally by the HOOP SCOOP.  And what about the fact that 6'8 Malik Hines and 7'0 Trayvon Reed both transferred last fall to Burlington (Life Center) NJ?  The former is originally from Jackson (Murrah) MS and the latter is from Snellville (Shiloh) GA and they are good enough to be ranked #89 and #129 nationally in the senior class by the HOOP SCOOP?

Rubin's 5th Year List is enhanced by the fact that Virginia Commonwealth-bound 6''8 Terry Larrier from Malvern (Phelps School) PA and Maryland-bound 6'6 Jared Nickens from West Chester (Westtown School) PA both had to stick around for a 5th Year of high school.  And for the college recruiter at the mid-to-low major level who is looking to steal a good one this spring, 6'7 John Carroll from Pottstown (The Hill School) PA is a great name to remember.

Rubin's complete list of the Top 5th Year Players 14 5th Year Players, Top 361 Seniors, Top 354 Juniors, Top 213 Sophomores, Top 108 Freshmen, Top 47 8th Graders, Top 15 7th Graders, and Top five 6th graders can be found in the State-By-State and Area Reports Section.

To get more information about all of the above mentioned players in our ever expanding Players Profiles Section and/or see Rubin's Rankings, we encourage you to subscribe right now!

HOOP SCOOP's EXCLUSIVE RANKING OF THE TOP COLLEGE BASKETBALL COACHES 

Published on March 19, 2014 by Clark Francis

With four NCAA Championships and 11 NCAA Final Four appearances already on his résumé, you would think that Duke's Mike Krzyzewski's hold on the top spot on our List of the Top 60 Head Coaches in the Game Today would be pretty firm.  However, the pendulum could swing the other way and we could have an interesting debate on our hands if the University of Louisville makes its third straight run into the NCAA Finals and/or wins its second straight National Championship.  Remember, a lot of this is about who is hot and who is not and each of the last two years Rick Pitino has done such a marvelous job of coaching in the NCAA Tournament that he should used as the poster boy for why you should not name the National Coach-of-the-Year until after the NCAA Tournament is over.  And now once again it looks like he has his team peaking at the right time of the year, as everybody, except those on the NCAA Selection Committee, have figured out that Louisville is one of the team's to beat in this year's tournament.  On the other hand, if Duke makes a run into the NCAA Final Four and/or the Blue Devils win the NCAA Championship, then that would strengthen Krzyzewski's hand even more with regard to being the best coach in the game today, as well as the second best coach in the history of the game behind John Wooden. 

We also can't help but wonder where SMU's Larry Brown would have stood in the grand scheme of things, if he had spent his entire coaching career at the collegiate level, instead of the four years that he spent coaching in the ABA and the 27 years that he spent coaching in the NBA.  If you will recall, in addition to winning the 1988 NCAA Championship, Brown's teams made three NCAA Final Four appearances and won an average of 26.8 games per year in just eight seasons as a Division I college coach.  And, when one also remembers that Brown led the Detroit Pistons to the 2004 NBA Championship, is one of the winningest coaches NBA history, he already is well on his way toward transforming SMU from rags to riches, and he hasn't lost his touch as a recruiter with the likes 6'5 Emmanuel Mudiay from Dallas (Prime Prep Academy) TX already in the fold for next year, it's easy to see why he checks in at #3 on our list List of the Top 60 Head Coaches in the Game Today

But after that it gets it little more difficult, as Michigan State's Tom Izzo, North Carolina's Roy Williams, Florida's Billy Donovan, Kentucky's John Calipari, Syracuse's Jim Boeheim, and Kansas' Bill Self are pretty much interchangeable in the next six spots.  As a matter of fact, the only change that we've made from a year ago with regard to these six head coaches, all of whom have won at least one NCAA Championship and have combined for a grand total of 26 NCAA Final Four appearances, was to move Donovan up from #9 to #6 and drop Self down from #6 to #9.  However, that easily could change multiple ways again next year depending up what happens in this year's NCAA Tournament, during the regular season next year, and on the recruiting trail.  It really is that close!   And rounding out the top 10 is Arizona's Sean Miller, who suddenly is the highest ranked coach on this list without a NCAA Final Four appearance, but is red hot in terms of both wins and losses and in terms of signing more than his share of McDonald's All-American's.

The guy who has made the biggest move into the upper echelon of this list is Wichita State's Gregg Marshall.  But he still couldn't crack the top 10 even though he guided his team to a NCAA Final Four appearance a year and his team has a perfect 34-0 record heading into this year's NCAA Tournament.  However, instead of this being a knock on Marshall, it should be seen as a testament to just how good all of the above mentioned coaches are on this list.  And, when we dig a little deeper, it really is hard to believe that guys like Wisconsin's Bo Ryan, Michigan's John Beilein, West Virginia's Bobby Huggins, Villanova's Jay Wright, Gonzaga's Mark Few, Pittsburgh's Jamie Dixon, Indiana's Tom Crean, Miami-FL Jim Larranaga, and Virginia's Tony Bennett , Ohio State's Thad Matta, Texas Tech's Tubby Smith, Creighton's Greg McDermott, Oklahoma's Lon Kruger, Virginia Commonwealth's Shaka Smart, Baylor's Scott Drew, Georgetown's John Thompson III, and Kansas State's Bruce Weber are any higher on this list.  Collectively this group has accounted for another 13 NCAA Final Four appearances and to make this list without an NCAA Final Four appearance is almost as hard as than landing one of the HOOP SCOOP's top five-ranked high school seniors. 

Our Ranking of the Top 30 Head Coaches Who Are in the Middle of their Career and Have the Potential to Move onto Our List of the Top 60 Head Coaches in the Game Today also is a pretty impressive list and right at the top of this list is LSU's Johnny Jones.  However, he does not get the #1 nod based on the fact that his team has finished 19-12 and 19-13 each of the last two years.  Instead, this is based on the fact that Jones proved that he as a very good coach back in his days as the boss at North Texas, he has a plethora of good younger players in the program, and he's got some more great recruits, like 6'11 Elbert Robinson from Garland (Lakeview Centennial) TX, 6'1 Josh Gray from Odessa (JC) TX, and 6'9 Jr Ben Simmons from Montverde (Academy) FL, on the horizon. 

And, when we move onto to our Ranking of the Top 30 Up-and-Coming Head Coaches in the College Game Today, which by definition includes only those with less than five years of head coaching experience at the Division I level, we find what promises to be a Who's Who of the Next Generation of Great Head Coaches, which is headed by Stanford's Johnny Dawkins.  And what a difference a year can make, as Dawkins has gone from being in danger of getting fired to a guy with a team in the NCAA Tournament and our #8-ranked recruiting class with the likes of 6'9 Michael Humphrey from Phoenix (Sunnyslope) AZ, 6'8 Reid Travis from Minneapolis (De La Salle) MN 6'3 Robert Cartwright from La Canada (Flintridge Prep) CA, and 6'4 Dorian Pickens from Phoenix (Pinnacle) AZ.  And, while none of these guys are good enough to start thinking about going to the NBA anytime soon, they all are ranked in the 25-100 range nationally and it is a safe bet that they will win enough games during the next four years to position Dawkins perfectly to be the heir apparent to Mike Krzyzewski right about the time he'll likely be thinking about retiring in four or five years. 

We've already mentioned 120 head coaches on the three aforementioned lists, but we're still missing some other excellent head coaches, like Coastal Carolina's Cliff Ellis, Vanderbilt's Kevin Stallings, Old Dominion's Jeff Jones, Georgia State's Ron Hunter, Loyola-Marymount's Mike Dunlap, and George Washington's Mike Lonergan.  Those first four have been Division I head coaches for more than the 20-year requirement to be in our Ranking of the Top 30 Head Coaches Who Are in the Middle of their Career and Have the Potential to Move onto Our List of the Top 60 Head Coaches in the Game Today, but an argument could be made that each one of them should have been our List of the Top 60 Head Coaches in the Game Today.  It seems like Dunlap has been forever, but his only head coaching experience prior to recently getting the Loyola-Marymount job came at Metro State at the Division II level and with the Charlotte Bobcats in the NBA  So it's kind of hard to put him on our list of guys with five years or less experience.  As for Lonergan, we messed up and counted his 12 years at Catholic University, where he won a Division III National Championship in 2001 and didn't include him in our Ranking of the Top 30 Head Coaches Who Are in the Middle of their Career and Have the Potential to Move onto Our List of the Top 60 Head Coaches in the Game Today.  However, if we had it to do over again, we'd put him in the top 10.

Our Ranking of the Top 60 Assistant Coaches in the College Game Today is an equally impressive list and it almost seems like you need to have come up through the ranks and paid your dues as both a player and coach (i.e. Syracuse's Mike Hopkins and Duke's Steve Wojciechowski) or had previous head coaching experience at the Division I level (i.e. Florida's John Pelphrey, Arizona's Joe Pasterneck, Kansas' Norm Roberts, N.C. State's Bobby Lutz, Arkansas' Melvin Watkins, Connecticut's Karl Hobbs, Iowa State's Doc Sadler, and North Carolina's Steve Robinson) or in the prep school ranks (Louisville's Kevin Keats and Maryland's Scott Spinelli) to get mentioned near the top of this list.  The two most noteworthy exceptions are Kansas' Kurtis Townsend and Oklahoma State's Butch Pierre, both of whom are second to none on the recruiting trail and have more than paid their dues over the years.  Townsend also is now the marquee guy on what is arguably the best coaching staff in the nation, as Norm Roberts and Jerrence Howard also check in at #6 and #36 respectively in our Ranking of the Top 60 Assistant Coaches in the College Game Today.  Also noteworthy is the fact that N.C. State is the only other staff that has all three assistants ranked on this list, as Bobby Lutz, Orlando Early, and Rob Moxley check in at #7, #29, and #38 respectively.

Our Ranking of the Top 30 Assistant Coaches at the Mid-To-Low Division I Level is headed by an interesting mix of guys who have been around the block a few times (i.e. North Texas' Rob Evans, who previously was the head coach at Ole Miss and Arizona State, and Donny Daniels, who has heading coaching experience at both the junior college and Division I level and was one of the architects behind Ben Howland's success at UCLA), and guys who really know how to get it done on the recruiting trail (i.e. Wichita State's Steve Forbes, Cal State-Northridge's Chris Pompey).

And last, but not least, we should probably make a list of former head coaches, like Bruce Pearl, Ben Howland, Fran Fraschilla, Rick Stansbury, Darrin Horn, Bill Carmody, and Seth Greenberg, who currently are not in coaching, but would be no-brainers for anybody looking for a home run hire at the high Division I level this spring. Another guy who has fallen through the cracks is Jerry Wainright, who previously made heading coaching stops at UNC-Wilmington, Richmond, and DePaul and is now the Director of Basketball Operations at Marquette University.  No doubt he would be the #1 guy on any list of administrative and none coaching staff positions at the Division I level and we encourage you to check back when this list becomes available at our web site later this month.  In other words, this is just one more reason to subscribe and we encourage you to do so right now. 

UPDATED RANKING OF THE TOP 125 PLAYERS NATIONALLY IN THE CLASS OF 2019 (7th GRADERS) PROVIDES GREAT HEAD START ON THE FUTURE 

Published on February 4, 2014 by Clark Francis

One of the many things that separates the HOOP SCOOP from all of the rest is the fact that we start tracking the top players in the nation at a very early age.  And this is really important, because it gives us a much earlier starting point and a lot more perspective when it comes time to getting it right with regard to putting all of the pieces together and which players I end up voting for on the McDonald’s All-American Team and how I rank the top players nationally in the spring of their senior year, which is the time when we take great pride in getting it right.  If you will recall, we currently have 6’8 Cliff Alexander from Chicago (Curie) IL and 6’7 Stanley Johnson from  Santa Ana (Mater Dei) CA running neck-and-neck for top player honors in the Class of 2014, we were one of the only ones to have 6’8 Jabari Parker from Chicago (Simeon) IL ranked #1 in the class over 6’8 Andrew Wigginsfrom Huntington (Prep) WV a year ago, we had 6’5 Shabazz Muhammad from Las Vegas (Bishop Gorman) NV ranked as the #1 player in his class two years ago, we had 6’8 Michael Gilchrist from Elizabeth (St. Patrick) ) and 6’10 Anthony Davis from Chicago (Perspectives Charter) IL ranked #1 and #2 in their class three years ago, we might have been the only one to rank 6’8 Jared Sullingerfrom Columbus (Northland) OH over 6’8 Harrison Barnes from Ames (H.S.) IA four years ago, we had 6’2 Avery Bradley from Henderson (Findlay Prep) NV ranked as the #1 player his class five years ago, we did likewise with 6’2 Brandon Jennings from Mouth of Wilson (Oak Hill) VA, and 6’9Kevin Love from Lake Oswego (H.S.) OR six and seven year ago, we had 7’0 Greg Oden from Indianapolis (Lawrence North) IN and 6’10 Kevin  Durant from Rockville (Montrose Christian) MD ranked #1 and #2 in their class eight years ago, we had 6’7 Martell Webster from Seattle (Prep) WA, 6’11 Dwight Howard from Atlanta (Southeast Atlanta Christian) GA, and 6’7 LeBron Jamesfrom Akron (St. Vincent-St. Mary) OH ranked #1 in their classes nine year ago, 10 years ago, and 11 years ago, we had 6’7 Carmelo  Anthony from Mouth of Wilson (Oak Hill) VA ranked #1 in his class over 6’9 Amare Stoudemire from Orlando (Cypress Creek) FL 12 years ago,

However, unlike our most recent Ranking of the Top 8th Graders, which was published a couple of weeks ago exclusively in the View Subscriber Section, I will be the first to admit that there is a lot more margin for error with our Ranking of the Top 125 Players Nationally in the Class of 2019.  Instead, it’s more of a case where we’re trying to put all of the pieces together, make accurate comparisons, and get insight from people that we trust about players that I have not yet seen play in person.  A good example is the race for the #1 spot in the Class of 2019 among 6’8 7th Grader Balsa Kopriva from West Palm Beach, FL, 6’6 7th Chandler Lawson from Memphis, TN, and 6’3 7th Grader Wendell Moore from Concord, NC.  Moore is an aggressive combo forward who is physically and athletically mature beyond his age and Lawson is so naturally talented that he’s being touted as the best player in his family, which is saying a lot when one members that his two older brothers- 6’7 Jr D.J. Lawson from Memphis (Hamilton) TN and 6’8 Soph Dedric Lawson from Memphis (Hamilton) TN – are both ranked among the top 20 players nationally in their respective classes.  However, we gave the nod to Kopriva after several people told us that he was the best player last summer at the 6th Grade AAU Nationals and confirmed that he is amazingly skilled for somebody so big and so young.   And, to reinforce this point even further, Brian Merritt, who is John Lucas’right hand man and was in attendance at the 6th Grade AAU Nationals, tells us that Kopriva had a game where he got a triple-double, which included points, rebounds, and blocks.   As for 5’9 7th Grader Tyger Campbell from Cedar Rapids, IA, he checks in at #4 on our list, he totally dominated his age group when we saw him last spring at the John Lucas Resources Future of the Game-West Camp in Las Vegas, NV, and he also was one of the better players when he was playing up week later at the John Lucas Resources International Middle School Combine in Houston, TX.  Our New York City Editor Ron Naclerio tells us that everybody that follows this age group in and around the Big Apple thinks 6’3 7th Grader Scottie Lewis from Old Bridge, NJ will be the next great one to come out of “The City.”

We also get similar reports from those in the Washington, DC area about 6’1 7th Grader Justin Moore from Accokeek, MD being a big athletic prolific scoring 2-guard with an incredible amount of upside and potential and 5’11 Amani Harris from Inglewood, CA, who is an excellent defender, has some toughness in his game, and uses his speed and quickness to get out and go in transition, being the hottest young commodity on the West Coast.  Our Ohio Editor Chris Johnson talked to several people, including Rob Taylor,  who runs the Buckeye Prep Report, about 5’11 7th Grader Jeremiah Francis from Columbus, OH and 6’4 7th Grader Jordan Mitchell from Blacklick, OH.  And this race is a tough call, as the former has the edge right now, but the latter has more upside and potential.  We also really like 6’2 7th Grade Dexter Shouse from Indianapolis, IN, because this strong physical athletic guard is equally effective either spot, he is advanced well beyond is age, and he has a great pedigree, and 5’11 7th Grader Michael Green from Myrtle Beach, SC, because this multi-dimensional athletic white kid plays with a swagger, impressed us with his outside shooting, and was dominant when we saw him last fall at the North Carolina Junior Phenom Camp in Winston-Salem, NC.  We also have to give Brian Merritt credit for tipping us off about 6’5 7th Grader Anwan Demiere from Las Vegas, NV, who is a guy that nobody has ever written about and can not be found on any list.  Merritt calls him “Shaq” and tells us that the sky is the limit for this big man who is already a force to be reckoned with around the basket.

To find out exactly where all of these players are ranked and to see the complete list, there is no time like the present to purchase your subscription.  Not only will you get complete access to everything that we publish for the next year, but you also will get my book,"How to Get Recruited.  

McDONALD's ALL-AMERICAN TEAM ANNOUNCED:  HOOP SCOOP UPDATES RANKING OF TEAMS THAT HAVE LANDED THE MOST PLAYERS IN THE GAME'S 38-YEAR HISTORY

Published on January 29, 2014 by Clark Francis

The 2014 McDonald's All-American Team has been officially announced and the East Squad includes

6'8 Cliff Alexander from Chicago (Curie) IL (Kansas)

6'1 Tyus Jones from Apple Valley (H.S.) MN (Duke)

6'7 Justin Jackson from Houston (HCYA) TX (North Carolina)

6'5 Isaiah Whitehead from Brooklyn (Lincoln) NY (Seton Hall)

6'11 Myles Turner from Euless (Trinity) TX

6'2 James Blackmon from Marion (H.S.) IN (Indiana)

 7'0  Karl Townsfrom Metuchen (St. Joseph) NJ (Kentucky)

 6'4 D'Angelo Russell from Montverde (Academy) FL (Ohio State)

6'7 Kevon Looney from Milwaukee (Hamilton) WI (UCLA) 

6'6 Justise Winslow from Houston (St. John's) TX (Duke)

6'1 Thoe Pinson from High Point (Wesleyan Christian) NC (North Carolina)

 6'2 Romelo Trimble from Arlington (Bishop O'Connell) VA (Maryland)

 

The  West Squad includes

6'7 Stanley Johnson from Santa Ana (Mater Dei) CA (Arizona)

6'5 Emmanul Mudiay from Dallas (Prime Prep) TX (SMU)

6'1Jahlil Okafor from Chicago (Whitney Young) IL (Duke)

6'1 Joel Berry from Orlando (Lake Highland Prep) FL (North Carolina)

6'6 Rashad Vaughn from Henderson (Findlay Prep) NV

5'8 Tyler Ulis from Chicago Heights (Marian Catholic) IL (Kentucky)

6'6 Kelly Oubre from Henderson (Findlay Prep) NV (Kansas)

6'5 Grayson Allen from Jacksonville (Providence) FL (Duke)

6'10 Trey Lyles from Indianapolis (Tech) IN (Kentucky)

6'8 Reid Travis from Minneapolis (De La Salle) MN (Stanford)

6'6 Devin Booker from Moss Point (H.S.) MS (Kentucky)

6'11 Thomas Welsh from Los Angeles (Loyola) CA (UCLA)

For the most part the team's look well balanced and there is the potential for some great match-ups (i.e. Alexander versus Okafor,  Jones versus Berry, Vaughn versus Whitehead), but we find it kind of hard to believe that 6'2  Romelo Trimble from Arlington (Bishop O'Connell) VA and 6'11 Thomas Welsh from Los Angeles (Loyola) CA were both named to the team and 6'8 Daniel Hamilton from Bellflower (St. John Bosco) CA was left out of the mix.  I also thought 6'2 Quentin Snider from Louisville (Ballard) KY should have been in the game and am surprised by the fact that a lot of people continue to sleep on the fact that 6'6 Trevon Bluiett from Indianapolis (Park Tudor) IN is one of the better players in the nation.

1) North Carolina (70 Players), 2) Duke (61 Players), 3) Kentucky (53 Players), 4) UCLA (35 Players), 5) Kansas (33 Players), 6) Indiana (26 Players), 7) Louisville (20 Players), 7)Michigan (20 Players), 9) Syracuse (19  Players), 10) Florida (18 Players), 10) Georgia Tech (18 Players), 10) N.C. State (18 Players), 10) Ohio State (18 Players), 14) Arizona (17 Players), 15) LSU (16 Players), 15) Notre Dame (16 Players), 17) Michigan State (15 Players), 18) Memphis (14 Players), 18) Georgetown (14 Players),  18) Maryland (14 Players), 21) Arkansas (13 Players), 22) Illinois (12 Players), 22) St. John's (12 Players), 22) Villanova (12 Players), and 25) Georgia (11 Players) is the list of the top 25-ranked schools based which schools have signed the most McDonald's All-American's in the 38-year history of the McDonald's All-American Game.  This list is based on where each player signed as a high school senior and it includes all of the above mentioned players on the 2014 McDonald's American Team, which was announced earlier  this evening on ESPNU.

This year's game will be played on Wednesday, April 2nd, and, once again, it will taker place at the United Center in Chicago, IL, which is important, because there should be a tremendous amount of local interest with 6'8 Cliff Alexander from Chicago (Curie) IL, 6'10 Jahlil Okafor from Chicago (Whitney Young) IL, and 5'8 Tyler Ulis from Chicago Heights (Marian Catholic) IL all in the game.  Not only are all three local products, but they are ranked among our top 10 seniors nationally.  We also have to give Morgan Wootten and the other powers-that-be in charge of this year's selection process high praise for not letting the cat out of the bag in terms of who was on this year's team prior to its being official announced on ESPNU.  Instead, it had the suspense and intrigue that always goes hand in hand with NCAA Selection Sunday.

We also think it is interesting to point out that Duke with 6'10 Jahlil Okafor from Chicago (Whitney Young) IL, 6'1 Tyus Jones from Apple Valley (H.S.) MN, 6'5 Justise Winslow from Houston (St. John) TX, and 6'5 Grayson Allen from Jacksonville (Providence) FL, Kentucky with 5'8 Tyler Ulis from Chicago Heights (Marian Catholic) IL, 7'0 Karl Towns from Metuchen (St. Joseph) NJ, 6'10 Trey Lyles from Indianapolis (Cathedral) IN, and 6'6 Devin Booker from Moss Point (H.S.) MS, North Carolina with 6'1 Joel Berry from Orlando (Lake Highland (Prep) FL, 6'6 Justin Jackson from Houston (HCYA) TX, and 6'6 Theo Pinson from High Point (Wesleyan Christian) NC, UCLA with 6'7Kevon Looney from Milwaukee (Hamilton) WI and 6'11 Thomas Welsh from Los Angeles (Loyola) CA, and Kansas with 6'8 Cliff Alexander from Chicago (Curie) IL and 6'6 Kelly Oubre from Henderson (Findlay Prep) NV account for 15 of the 24 players in this year's game.

Or, to put this into even better perspective, the top five-ranked schools on our above list have an average of three players each on the McDonald's All-American Team and, when one also remembers that Indiana with 6'2 James Blackmon from Marion (H.S.) IN, Ohio State with 6'4 D'Angelo Russell from Montverde (Academy) FL, Arizona with Stanley Johnson from Santa Ana (Mater Dei) CA, and Maryland with 6'2 Romelo Trimble from Arlington (Bishop O'Connell) VA, we also find that only three of 22 players who have already signed with a four-year Division I college or university picked a school that was not on our above list.  They are 6'5 Isaiah Whitehead from Brooklyn (Lincoln) NY to Seton Hall, 6'5 Emmanuel Mudiay from Dallas (Prime Prep Academy) TX to SMU, and 6'8 Reid Travis from Minneapolis (De La Salle) MN to Stanford.  It also will be interesting to see where the two remaining unsigned players - 6'11 Myles Turner from Euless (Trinity) TX and 6'6 Rashad Vaughn from Henderson (Findlay Prep) NV - end up, because they both are still considering schools on the above list.

I also encourage you to subscribe, so you can get my book,"How to Get Recruited," and you can check out the complete list of McDonald's All-American's from 1977 until 2014, which can be found in the View Subscriber Section of this web site.

OUR RANKING OF THE TOP 8TH GRADERS NATIONALLY PROVIDES GREAT INSIGHT INTO THE FUTURE:  CHASE ADAMS STIILL THE BEST PLAYER IN THE CLASS OF 2018 

Published on January 17, 2014 by Clark Francis

It’s hot off the press!  I’m talking about our Ranking of the Top 175 Players Nationally in the Class of 2018 (8th Graders) and this list is always extremely important, because it provides a great head start on the future.  And, if you don’t believe me, just take a look back to the same list from three years ago, which was published on April 28, 2011 and had a top 20 that included  1) 6’2 8th Grader Malik Newman from Jackson, MS, 2) 6’4 8th Grader Tyler Dorsey from Pasadena, CA, 3) 6’6 8th Grade Mickey Mitchell from Plano, TX, 4) 6’5 8th Grader Kejuan Johnson from Atlanta, GA, 5) 6’2 8th Grade Austin Grandstaff from Rowlett, TX, 6) 6’0 8th Grader Allonzo Trier from Rowlett, TX, 7) 6’3 8th Grader Jamar Ergas from Scarborough ON, 8) 6’9 8th Grader Broderick Jones from Inglewood, CA, 9) 6’9 8th Grader Horace Spencer from Southampton PA, 10) 6’7 8th Grader Justin Jackson from Toronto ON, 11) 6’3 8th Grader Josh Jackson from Southfield, MI, 12) 6’6 8th Grader Danjel Purefoy from Bibb County, AL, 13) 6’5 8th Grader Brandon Hutton from Chicago, Il,, 14) 6’2 8th Grader Isaiah Briscoe from Union, NJ, 15) 6’0 8th Grader Devonte Green from Manhasset, NY, 16) 5’11 8th Grader Perry Dozierfrom Columbia SC, 17) 6’6 8th Grader Jaylen Grant from Hyattsville, MD, 18) 6’8 8th GraderKarl Towns from Piscataway, NJ, 19) 6’10 8th Grader Stephen Zimmerman from Las Vegas, NV, and 20) 6’0 8th Grader Nassir Barrino from Irvington, NJ.  Or to put this into even better perspective, three of our top five ranked juniors nationally (Malik NewmanTyler Dorsey, andStephen Zimmerman) and eight of our top 20-ranked juniors nationally (Malik NewmanTyler Dorsey, Stephen Zimmerman, Allonzo Trier, Mickey Mitchell, Perry Dozier, Isaiah Briscoe,amd Isaiah Brosco) were ranked included on our list of the Top 175 8th Graders three years ago.   And that doesn’t even include 7’0 Karl Towns from Metuchen (St. Joseph) NJ, who reclassified back up a year and is now the #17-ranked senior nationally by the HOOP SCOOP and is bound for the University of Kentucky, and 6’6 Soph Josh Jackson from Detroit (Consortium) MI, 6’7 Soph Justin Jackson from Henderson (Findlay Prep) NV, and 6’3 Soph Devonte Greenfrom Brookville (Long Island Lutheran) NY, all of whom have since reclassified back a year in class and are currently ranked #1, #11, and #51 nationally in the current sophomore class respectively.  As for 6’8 Jr Horace Spencer from Henderson (Findlay Prep) NY, 6’6 Jr Danjel Purefoy from Centerville (Bibb County) AL, 6’9 Jr Broderick Jones from Lawndale (H.S.) CA, 6’0 Jr Nassir Barrino from Jersey City (Hudson Catholic) NJ, and 6’6 Jr KeJuan Johnson from Atlanta (Westlake) GA, they too all can be found on our list of the top 100 ranked juniors nationally at #27, #36, #60, #74, and #78 respectively.

We also did pretty darn well when we look back at where he had a lot of today’s top seniors ranked four years ago back when they were in 8th Grade, as we find that 6’0 8th Grader Joel Berry from Casselberry, FL was ranked #1, 6’6 8th Grader Craig Victor from New Orleans, LA was ranked #3 5’9 8th Grader James Blackmon from Ft. Wayne, IN was ranked #5, 6’4 8th Grader Trevon Bluiett from Indianapolis, IN was ranked #7, 5’7 8th Grader Parker Cartwrightfrom Van Nuys, CA was ranked #9, 6’3 8th Grader Theo Pinson from Greensboro, NC was ranked #12, 6’0 8th Grader Isaiah Whitehead from Brooklyn, NY was ranked #14, 6’4 8th Grader Trey Lyles from Indianapolis, IN was ranked #24, 5’6 8th Grader Quentin Snider from Louisville, KY was ranked #25, 6’6 8th Grader Jahlil Okafor from Chicago, IL was ranked #26, 6’5 8th Grader Jalen Lindsey from Nashville, TN was ranked #27, 6’5 8th Grader LeRon Blackfrom Memphis, TN was ranked #35, 6’0 8th Grader Romelo Trimble from Upper Marlboro, MD was ranked #38, 5’0 8th Grader Tyler Uliss from Lima, OH was ranked #41, and 5’10 8th GraderTyus Jones from Minneapolis, MN was ranked #42, 6’2 8th Grader Karl Towns from Piscatway, NJ ranked #48. and 6’3 8th Grader Justise Winslow was ranked #53 when he published ourRanking of the Top 150 8th Graders back on October 9, 2009.  In other words, all 17 of the above mentioned players are ranked among our top 53 seniors nationally today, plus we also had 6’6 8th Grader Andrew Wiggins from Creedmoor, NC, who was the consensus #1-ranked player a year ago  ranked #6 in that class.  However just as important, is another interesting parallel, which includes 5’8 Tyler Ullis from Chicago Heights (Marian Township) IL, who is currently ranked #10 nationally in the senior class by the HOOP SCOOP, and 5’1 8th Grader Chase Adams from Chicago, IL, who is ranked #1 nationally in the Class of 2018 by the HOOP SCOOP.  The popular consensus among those in the basketball know in the Windy City is that Adams will end up being even better than Ullis, who is destined for stardom at the University of Kentucky and promises to be one of college basketball’s most charismatic players for the next four years.  I’ve seen Adams ranked as low as #19, #35 #58, and #65 nationally in his class by others who do middle school rankings.  But I will stand by Adams being ranked #1 in the class, because his basketball IQ is off the chart and his ball handling and passing skills, court vision, and unselfish is unprecedented for somebody so young.  On the other hand, we have three 6’8 guys ranked #2, #3, and #4 in the class and we have to give our good friend Spencer Pulliam, who publishesDunkDog.com and is one of my best sources of information when it comes to middle school rankings, credit for an assist on 6’8 8th Grader Jordan Brown from Roseville, CA, who checks in at #3 on this list, behind 6’8 8th Grader Marvin Bagley from Phoenix, AZ and ahead of 6’8 8th Grader Effrem “E.J.” Montgomery from Ft. Pierce, FL.  Not only have I never seen him play, but Brown has not been out a lot on the national circuit and, as a result, is still somewhat under the radar screen when most people start talking about the top players nationally in this class.

To find out where all of these players are ranked, we encourage you to purchase the one-year subscription, plus our book, "How to Get Recruited," for just a $100.

NOW IS A GREAT TIME TO EITHER SUBSCRIBE OR RENEW YOUR SUBSCRIPTION!!!

Published on January 15, 2014 by Clark Francis

 

Before I do anything else I want to thank James Kerti, who is National Basketball Scout & Consultant and the CEO & Founder of HoopsThink.com, for doing a great job of designing our new web site and providing the HOOP SCOOP with an impressive new look.  He also is the person who designed the web sites for Burlison on Basketball.com and CalHiSports.com and I would highly recommend him to anybody who wants to follow in our footsteps and either publish a brand new web site or give the one they have a new look.  Kerti does what he says he’s going to do, does everything in a very professional manner, and also knows a lot about basketball.  As for the HOOP SCOOP, now is the perfect time to either subscribe or renew your subscription!!!  Not only is the annual subscription price for the fan only $100, which breaks down to just $8.33 a month or just 27 cents per day, but we also are including in the package my book, “How To Get Recruited, which is a must read for anybody who is interested in getting a college scholarship or in the recruiting process.  And, if that weren’t enough to entice you to subscribe, we have something for everybody just around the corner.  For the high school basketball fan and college coach who wants to keep up with the top players in the country and what’s going on at the top events, I will be covering the Spaulding Hoop Hall Classic, which is arguably the best event of the entire winter, this weekend in Springfield, MA, and the Penny Hardaway HoopFest, which is another one of the top events of the winter, on January 24th and 25th at Dyer County in Newbern, TN.  And for those people who like rankings, updated Rankings of the Top Players Nationally in Each Class are just around the corner and we will begin with our Ranking of the Top Players Nationally in the Class of 2018 (8th Graders), which will be published on Friday, January 17th.

I also hope to publish Allen Rubin’s updated Philadelphia/Eastern Pennsylvania/South Jersey/Report sometime within the next several weeks.  But this report, which always seems to have more names than the Philadelphia phone book, will only be available in the Fan Section due to the fact that NCAA Division I college coaches are prohibited from subscribing to scouting services that do not provide a profile for every player that is identified in the report.  This also explains why I am in the process of writing a-profile on all of the top players in the nation in each class, as well as all of the players that we mention over and over throughout the year.  This will allow us to maintain the flow of our articles much better when we are covering what is happening at an event and the profiles (some of which are already available) will be easily accessible by clicking on the Player Profiles page in the View Subscriber Section.  This will apply to both fan Section and the  NCAA College Coaches Section, which is still available at a cost of $499.  However, there will be some differences in the college coaches section, including a lot more player profiles and periodic lists of sleepers and top unsigned players that are still available.  On the other hand, we can’t do everything and, as a result, when I incorporate recruiting news into the scheme of things, it will continue to be more in an analytical sense than a breaking news sense.

I also encourage you to tell you friends about our new web site, because the HOOP SCOOP is still way ahead of the curve with regard to accuracy and a great example can be found when one looks at our players rankings in recent years.  If you will recall, 6’8Andrew Wiggins from Huntington (Prep) WV was everybody’s#1-ranked high school senior nationally.  However, we didn’t pay any attention to the consensus and went with 6’8 Jabari Parker from Chicago (Simeon) IL.  I also think we look pretty good in hindsight when we had 6’8 Jared Sullinger from Columbus (Northland) OH ranked #1 over 6’7 Harrison Barnes from Ames (H.S.) IA in 2010; 6’2 Avery Bradley from Henderson (Findlay Prep) NV as the #1-ranked player in 2009, 6’2 Brandon Jennings from Mouth of Wilson (Oak Hill) VA as the #1-ranked player in 2008, 6’9Kevin Love from Lake Oswego (H.S.) OR as the #1-ranked player in 2007, and, with our steadfast belief that Texas’ Kevin Durant should have been the #1 player picked over Ohio State’s Greg Oden in the 2007 NBA Draft.  Remember, most great players have at least one of three things:  size, athleticism, and outside shooting.  Then, the fourth great separator is that incredible work ethic.  So, if you’re 6’10, have freak like athleticism, can shoot the lights out from downtown, and you are the hardest working player anybody has ever been around, then your name is Kevin Durant.  And it was those four things that made this such a no-brainer at the time.

ARIZONA NABS DORSEY, ADDS TO CLASS

Published on January 11, 2014 by Clark Francis

It already had become obvious in recent years that University of Arizona head coach Sean Miller was one of the top up-and-coming stars in the business.  But after last night’s early verbal commitment by 6’4 Jr Tyler Dorsey from Bellflower (St. John Bosco) CA the Wildcats, it might now be appropriate to start touting “Miller as the John Calipari of the West.”  If you will recall, two years ago the Wildcats landed 6’8 Brandon Ashley from Henderson (Findlay Prep) NV, 7’0 Kaleb Tarczewski from Southborough (St. Mark’s) MA, 6’9 Grant Jerrett from La Verne (Lutheran) CA, 6’2 Gabe York from Orange (Lutheran) CA, and 6’9 Matt Korcheck from Cochise (JC) AZ in a recruiting class that was ranked #3 in our Final Ranking of the Top Recruiting Classes for the Class of 2012; a year ago they landed 6’9 Aaron Gordon from San Jose (Archbishop Mitty) CA, 6’7 Rondae Jefferson from Chester (H.S.) PA, 6’5 Elliott Pitts from Concord (De La Salle) CA, and 6’7 Eric Conklin fromScottsdale (Chaparral) AZ .in a recruiting class that was ranked #18 in our Final Ranking of the Top Recruiting Classes for the Class of 2013; they currently have 6’7 Stanley Johnson from Santa Ana (Mater Dei) CA, 6’3, Kadeem Allen from Hutchinson (JC) KS, 5’8 Parker Jackson-Cartwright from Los Angeles (Loyola) CA, and 6’8 Craig Victor from Henderson (Findlay Prep) NV in a recruiting class that is ranked #4 on our list of the Top Recruiting Classes To-Date for the Class of 2014; and, now with Dorsey in the fold, they have a recruiting class that is tied at #3, along with LSU, on our list of the Top Recruiting Classes To-Date for the Class of 2015.  Gordon also was named MVP in last year’s McDonald’s All-American Game, Johnson is currently the #1-ranked player in the senior class nationally by the HOOP SCOOP, and Dorsey was our #1-ranked junior nationally based on the way he played last summer and, as a result, it looks like the potential is there for a revolving door of one-and-done guys to the NBA, just like there is at the University of Kentucky.  And the big secret to Arizona’s success, according to Dinos Trigonis, who was Dorsey’s club team coach this past summer and is wired into everything that goes on in Southern California, is the fact that Miller just outworks everybody else.  Remember, Miller was named the Most Visible Head Coach on the Recruiting Trail two summers ago, he was the our runner-up choice for that same award a year ago, and he has successfully gone head-to-head against Calipari and the Wildcats a number of times during the last couple of years and gotten his man.  Miller has surrounded himself with a terrific coaching staff, which includes Joe PasternackEmanuel Richardson, and Damon Stoudamire, and all three of these guys are second to none on the recruiting trail and they all should have big time futures as head coaches.  As for Dorsey, he is versatile enough to play either guard spot and he is an absolute scoring machine with his speed, quickness, athleticism, and moves to the basket and deep shooting range from behind the arc.  However, his game tapered off some this winter and, as a result, we’ve dropped him from the #1 spot in the class into a tie at #5, along with  7’0 Jr Stephen Zimmerman from Las Vegas (Bishop Gorman) NV, 6’9 Jr Elijah Thomas from Lancaster (H.S.) TX, 6’9 Jr Carlton Bragg from Cleveland (St. Joseph) OH, in our recently published HOOP SCOOP All-American Teams.   In other words, Dorsey is an incredible talent, but he will have to get stronger physically, become more consistent, and over the long haul earn it back, if he wants to be the top-ranked player in the class.  On the other hand, this is perfect fit for Dorsey and a major coup for the Wildcats!

With the early verbal commitment last night by 6’4 Soph Lonzo Ball from Chino Hills (H.S.) CA to UCLA and the early verbal commitment a week ago by 6’4 Soph Mustafa Heron from Waterbury (Sacred Heart) CT to the University of Pittsburgh, things are suddenly starting to get interesting when we look at our Top Recruiting Classes To-Date for the Class of 2016.  Ball is ranked #12 nationally in the Class of 2016 by the HOOP SCOOP and Ronnie Flores, who is the Managing Editor ofCalHiSports.com & the California Editor the HOOP SCOOP, thinks that Ball is exactly what the doctor ordered for the Bruins.  “Nobody at the high school or college level sees the court and passes the basketball as well as this guy does,” says Flores.His instincts and court awareness are off the chart and his ability to push the ball up court and hit the open man is absolutely phenomenal.  Even Tyus Jones can’t make some of the kind of passes that I’ve seen Ball complete.  And he does it on a consistent basis.”  However, Flores is not ready to tout him as one of the top 10 players in the Class of 2016 just yet.  “Ball still needs to prove that he can consistently get it done against high level competition and he needs to take better shots and bring it on a more consistent basis.”   Ball also is a great kid and, with his knack for making everybody around him better, he also is the perfect guy to help open the floodgates for the new regime in terms of keeping the top local talent at home.  “If he’s not a Pied Piper, then one doesn’t exist on the West Coast,” says Flores.  On the other hand, Ball does play the same position as 6’2 Frosh Bryce Alford, who is the son of Bruins head coach Steve Alford and is currently averaging 8.1 ppg and 3.1 apg.  But by the time Ball enrolls into college, Alford will be a senior and we suspect they will be able complement one another extremely well.  Remember, when Alford graduated this past spring from Albuquerque (La Cueva) NM, he was ranked #100 nationally in the Class of 2013 by the HOOP SCOOP and it was obvious that he was a chip off the old block by the way he rewrote all of the state’s scoring records.  The addition of Heron also is huge for a number of reasons.  First, he was so good when we saw him a month-and-a-half ago in the National Prep Showcase at Albertus Magnus College in New Haven, CT that he finished as the #3-ranked player in the entire event and he also was listed as the fourth highest ranked sophomore yesterday when we published on our HOOP SCOOP All-American Teams.  Second, Heron is a true combo guard due to the fact that he is capable of putting up prolific numbers (he had 35 points and 12-17 field goals when we saw him against Elev 8 Sports) and he also was the guy who usually brought the ball up the court and was his team’s primary ball handler and passer.  Third, he joins 6’6 Maverick Rowan from Midland (Lincoln Park) PA, who is another guy who had already made an early verbal commitment to the Panthers and is ranked #79 nationally in the sophomore class by the HOOP SCOOP, in a recruiting class that is now ranked #1 on our list of the Top Recruiting Classes To-Date for the Class of 2016. Fourth, it looks like Barry Rohrssen, who is now in the first year of his second stint as an assistant coach at Pittsburgh, hasn’t lost his touch as a recruiter and when it comes to building relationships.  If you will recall, Rohrssen, who left Pittsburgh the first time around to become the head coach at Manhattan, has extremely strong New York City ties and, in this case, he was able to take advantage of the fact that he played overseas with Heron’s father.

TOP SOPHOMORES REARRANGE 2016 RECRUITING RANKINGS 

Published on January 9, 2014 by Clark Francis | Edit

With the early verbal commitment last night by 6’4 Soph Lonzo Ball from Chino Hills (H.S.) CA to UCLA and the early verbal commitment a week ago by 6’4 Soph Mustafa Heron from Waterbury (Sacred Heart) CT to the University of Pittsburgh, things are suddenly starting to get interesting when we look at our Top Recruiting Classes To-Date for the Class of 2016.  Ball is ranked #12 nationally in the Class of 2016 by the HOOP SCOOP and Ronnie Flores, who is the Managing Editor ofCalHiSports.com & the California Editor the HOOP SCOOP, thinks that Ball is exactly what the doctor ordered for the Bruins.  “Nobody at the high school or college level sees the court and passes the basketball as well as this guy does,” says Flores.His instincts and court awareness are off the chart and his ability to push the ball up court and hit the open man is absolutely phenomenal.  Even Tyus Jones can’t make some of the kind of passes that I’ve seen Ball complete.  And he does it on a consistent basis.”  However, Flores is not ready to tout him as one of the top 10 players in the Class of 2016 just yet.  “Ball still needs to prove that he can consistently get it done against high level competition and he needs to take better shots and bring it on a more consistent basis.”   Ball also is a great kid and, with his knack for making everybody around him better, he also is the perfect guy to help open the floodgates for the new regime in terms of keeping the top local talent at home.  “If he’s not a Pied Piper, then one doesn’t exist on the West Coast,” says Flores.  On the other hand, Ball does play the same position as 6’2 Frosh Bryce Alford, who is the son of Bruins head coach Steve Alford and is currently averaging 8.1 ppg and 3.1 apg.  But by the time Ball enrolls into college, Alford will be a senior and we suspect they will be able complement one another extremely well.  Remember, when Alford graduated this past spring from Albuquerque (La Cueva) NM, he was ranked #100 nationally in the Class of 2013 by the HOOP SCOOP and it was obvious that he was a chip off the old block by the way he rewrote all of the state’s scoring records.  The addition of Heron also is huge for a number of reasons.  First, he was so good when we saw him a month-and-a-half ago in the National Prep Showcase at Albertus Magnus College in New Haven, CT that he finished as the #3-ranked player in the entire event and he also was listed as the fourth highest ranked sophomore yesterday when we published on our HOOP SCOOP All-American Teams.  Second, Heron is a true combo guard due to the fact that he is capable of putting up prolific numbers (he had 35 points and 12-17 field goals when we saw him against Elev 8 Sports) and he also was the guy who usually brought the ball up the court and was his team’s primary ball handler and passer.  Third, he joins 6’6 Maverick Rowan from Midland (Lincoln Park) PA, who is another guy who had already made an early verbal commitment to the Panthers and is ranked #79 nationally in the sophomore class by the HOOP SCOOP, in a recruiting class that is now ranked #1 on our list of the Top Recruiting Classes To-Date for the Class of 2016. Fourth, it looks like Barry Rohrssen, who is now in the first year of his second stint as an assistant coach at Pittsburgh, hasn’t lost his touch as a recruiter and when it comes to building relationships.  If you will recall, Rohrssen, who left Pittsburgh the first time around to become the head coach at Manhattan, has extremely strong New York City ties and, in this case, he was able to take advantage of the fact that he played overseas with Heron’s father.

2014 HOOP SCOOP ALL-AMERICAN TEAMS

Published on January 8, 2014 by Clark Francis

Featuring the Top High School Players Nationally Regardless of Class and Position
Top-Ranked Player Nationally Regardless of Class is Stanley Johnson, a 6’7 strong physical multi-dimensional athletic senior wing from Santa Ana (Mater Dei) CA

HOOP SCOOP FIRST TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
CJahlil Okafor6'10SrChicago (Whitney Youg) ILDuke
PFCliff Alexander6'9SrChicago (Curie) ILKansas
WFStanley Johnson6'7SrSanta Ana (Mater Dei) CAArizona
PGEmmanuel Mudiay6'5SrDallas (Prime Prep Academy) TXSMU
PGTyus Jones6'1SrApple Valley (H.S.) MNDuke
HOOP SCOOP SECOND TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
PFBen Simmons6'9JrMontverde (Academy) FLLSU
PFCheick Diallo6'9JrCentereach (Our Savior New American) NY 
WFJustin Jackson6'8SrHouston (H.C.Y.A) TXNorth Carolina
2GIsaiah Whitehead6'5SrBrooklyn (Lincoln) NYSeton Hall
PGJoel Berry6'1SrOrlando (Lake Highland Prep) FLNorth Carolina
HOOP SCOOP THIRD TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
CMyles Turner6'11SrEuless (Trinity) TX
CIvan Rabb6'10JrOakland (Bishop O'Dowd) CA 
PFChris McCullough6'105thBradenton (IMG Academy) FLSyracuse
PFKevon Looney6'8SrMilwaukee (Hamilton) WIUCLA
PGTyler Ulis5'8SrChicago Heights (Marian Catholic) ILKentucky
HOOP SCOOP FOURTH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
2GDaniel Hamilton6'8SrBellflower (St. John Bosco) CAConnecticut
2GRashad Vaughn6'6SrHenderson (Findlay Prep) NV UNLV
2GGrayson Allen6'5SrJacksonville (Providence) FLDuke
2GD'Angelo Russell6'4SrMontverde (Academy) ) FLOhio State
2GJames Blackmon6'2SrMarion (H.S.) INIndiana
HOOP SCOOP FIFTH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
CKarl Towns7'0SrMetuchen (St. Joseph) NJKentucky
PFTrey Lyles6'10SrIndianapolis (Tech) INKentucky
WFKelly Oubre6'6SrHenderson (Findlay Prep) NVKansas
WFJustice Winslow6'5SrHouston (St. John's) TXDuke
2GMalik Newman6'5JrJackson (Callaway) MS 
HOOP SCOOP SIXTH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
CThon Maker7'0SophAxton (Carlisle School) VA
WFTrevon Bluiett6'6SrIndianapolis (Park Tudor) INXavier
WFJosh Jackson6'6SophDetroit (Consortium) MI 
PGKaleb Joseph6'25thAshburnham (Cushing Academy) MASyracuse
PGQuentin Snider6'2SrLouisville (Ballard) KYLouisville
HOOP SCOOP SEVENTH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
CStephen Zimmerman7'0JrLas Vegas (Bishop Gorman) NV
PFElijah Thomas6'9JrLancaster (H.S.) TX 
PFCarlton Bragg6'9JrCleveland (St. Joseph) OH 
WFDwayne Morgan6'7SrBaltimore (St. Frances) MDUNLV
2GTyler Dorsey6'4JrBellfower (St.  John Bosco) CA 
HOOP SCOOP EIGHTH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
PFCody Riley6'7FroshChatsworth (Serra Canyon) CA
PFLeRon Black6'7SrMemphis (White Station) TNIllinois
2GTheo Pinson6'6SrHigh Point (Wesleyan Christian) NCNorth Carolina
2GAllonzo Trier6'4JrRockville (Montrose Christian) MD 
PGParker Jackson-Cartwright5'9SrLos Angeles (Loyola) CAArizona
HOOP SCOOP NINTH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
CSkai Labissiere6'10JrCordova (Evangelical Christian) TN
CMichael Humphrey6'9SrPhoenix (Sunnyslope) AZStanford
PFAngel Delgado6'8SrHuutington (Prep) WVSeton Hall
PFReid Travis6'8SrMinneapolis (De La Salle) MNStanford
2GDevin Booker6'5SrMoss Point (H.S.) MSKentucky
HOOP SCOOP TENTH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
CGeorge Pagaginnis7'1JrWest Chester (Westtown School) PA 
CUdoke Azubuke6'11SophJacksonville (Potter's House) FL 
WFShaqquan Aaron6'6SrSeattle (Rainier Beach) WALouisville
WFDerrick Jones6'6JrRadnor (Archbishop Carroll) PA 
2GPhil Booth6'3SrBaltimore (Mt. St. Joseph) MDVillanova
HOOP SCOOP ELEVENTH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
CElbert Robinson6'11SrGrandview (Lakeview Centennial) TXLSU
2GLuke Kennard6'5JrFranklin (H.S.) OH 
2GJaQuan Lyle6'4SrHuntington (Prep) WV 
2GMustafa Heron6'4SophWaterbury (Sacred Heart) CTPittsburgh
PGJosh Perkins6'3SrHuntington (Prep) WVGonzaga
HOOP SCOOP TWELFTH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
CDiamond Stone6'10JrWhitefish Bay  (Domincan) WI
PFChase Jeter6'9JrLas Vegas (Bishop Gorman) NV
WFPaul White6'9SrChicago (Whitney Young) ILGeorgetown
PFMarcus Derrickson6'8JrFairfax (Paul VI) VAGeorgetown
PGJordan McLauglin6'0SrEtiwanda (H.S.) CAUSC
HOOP SCOOP THIRTEENTH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
CIsaac Haas7'2SrPiedmont (Hokes Bluff) ALPurdue
CGoodluch Obonoboh6'85thWilbraham (Wilbraham & Monson) MAUNLV
PFDedrick Lawson6'8SophMemphis (Hamilton) TN 
WFMario Kegler6'7SophJackson (Callaway) MS 
2GJaQuan Newton6'2SrPhiladelphia (Neumann--Goretti) PAMiami-FL
HOOP SCOOP FOURTEENTH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
PFHarry Giles6'9SophHigh Point (Wesleyan Christian) NC 
WFK.J. Lawson6'7JrMemphis (Hamilton) TNMemphis
WFMickey Mitchell6'7JrPlano (West) TXOhio State
WFKeita Bates-Diop6'7SrNormal (University) ILOhio State
WFJae'Sean Tate6'5SrPickerington (Central) OHOhio State
HOOP SCOOP FIFTEENTH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
CThomas Welsh6'11SrLos Angeles (Loyola) CAUCLA
WFJaylen Brown6'6JrMarietta (Wheeler) GA 
2GJared Terrell6'45thWolfeboro (Brewster Academy) NHOklahoma State
PGIsaiah Bricsoe6'3JrRoselle (Catholic) NJ 
PGNairm Lourawls5'10SrBel Air (Sunrise Christian) KSMichigan State
HOOP SCOOP SIXTEENTH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
PFCraig Victor6'8SrHenderson (Findlay Prep) NVArizona
PFDante Buford6'7SrJacksonville (Arlington Country Day) FLOklahoma
2GCharles Matthews6'6JrChicago (St. Rita) IL 
PGPerry Dozier6'4JrColumbia (Spring Valley) SC 
2GRomelo Trimble6'2SrArlington (Bishop O'Connell) VA Maryland
HOOP SCOOP SEVENTEETH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
WFBrandon Ingram6'8JrKinston (H.S.) NC
WFV.J. King6'7SophAkron (St. Vincent-St. Mary) OH
WFCaleb Martin6'7SrMouth of Wilson (Oak Hill) VAN.C. State
2GRobert Johnson6'35thRichmond (Benedictine) VAIndiana
2GAustin Grandstaff6'3JrRockwall (H.S.) TXOklahoma State
HOOP SCOOP EIGHTEENTH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
CThomas Bryant6'9JrHuutington (Prep) WV
WFRobert "Tre" Harris6'65thWaynesboro (Fishburne Military Academy) VAKansas State
2GBrandone Francis6'5SrJacksonville (Arlington Country Day) FLFlorida
2GT.J. Haws6'4SrHighland (Lone Peak) UTBrigham Young
PGDevonte Graham6'15thWolfeboro (Brewster Academy) NH 
HOOP SCOOP NINETEENTH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
WFVance Jackson6'8SophBellflower (St. John Bosco) CA
WFVictor Law6'7SrChicago (St. Rita) ILNorthwestern
2GMalachi Richardson6'6JrHamilton (Trenton Catholic) NJSyracuse
2GL.J. Peak6'5SrGaffney (H.S.) SCGeorgetown
PGJaliek Felton6'3FroshMullins (H.S.) SC 
HOOP SCOOP TWENTIETH TEAM ALL-AMERICAN
PositionPlayerHeightClassHometown (High School) StateCollege
CDaniel Giddens6'10JrMarietta (Wheeler) GA
PFTrevor Manuel6'8JrMouth of Wilson (Oak Hill) VA 
WFGary Clark6'7SrClayton (H.S.) NCCincinnati
2GChristian Vital6'2SophSaxton's River (Vermont Academy) VT
2GTadric Jackson6'2SrTifton (Tift County) GAGeorgia Tech

FINAL DAY AT THE BEACH BALL CLASSIC

Published on December 31, 2013 by Clark Francis

Myrtle Beach (Socastee) SC beat Mullins (H.S.) SC, 63-56, in a meaningless consolation game in the first game on the final day of action of this year’s Beach Ball Classic in Myrtle Beach, SC.  But the big story here was the redeeming performance that was turned in by 6’4 Frosh Jalek Felton from Mullins (H.S.) SC.  We didn’t get to see it, but a number of people who were in attendance on the first several days told us that they were very disappointed in the play of this athletic combo guard when he was matched up in the first round against 6’5 Soph Luke Kennard from Franklin (H.S.) OH and in the second round against Norcross (H.S.) GA.  If you will recall, we currently have Felton ranked #3 nationally in the freshman class by the HOOP SCOOPand he is the nephew of one of the best players (Raymond Felton) to ever play in the Beach Ball Classic.  Felton finished with 32 points, seven rebounds, three assists, four steals, 13-27 field goals, and 6-16 3-pointers in this game and he also finished a close second two days ago in the 3-point shooting contest and was one of the four finalists in the Slam Dunk Contest.

Norcross (H.S.) GA beat Lithonia (Miller Grove) GA, 70-56, in the Consolation Bracket Championship and the big difference in this game was the 8-16 3-point shooting by Norcross as a team and the hot hand specifically of 6’4 A.J. Bush, who finished with 23 points, 7-12 field goals, 4-7 3-pointers, and 5-6 free throws.  This lefty 2-guard also impressed us with his deep shooting range, great body, and good athleticism and he projects as a Division I player in both basketball and football, although his future is probably on the gridiron due to the fact that he is getting some high major looks as a quarterback prospect.  Another big key to this game was the fact that it was a tail of two halves for 5’11 Soph Alierique Gilbert from Lithonia (Miller Grove) GA, as this slashing athletic 2-guard was 4-6 from the field and 11 points at the intermission, but was locked up defensively by 6’4 Kahleen Pinkett from Norcross (H.S.) GA in the second half.  We still think Gilbert is one of the top young players in this tournament, but his 2-14 field goal shooting and only five points in this second half really tells the tail.

The most interesting thing about the Fifth Place Game, where Cincinnati (Moeller) OH jumped out to a 10-0 lead early and never looked back en route to a 51-34 win against Potomac (The Bullis School) MD, was the great outside shooting performance that was turned by 6’2 Grant Benzinger Cincinnati (Moeller) OH.  If you will recall, we’ve already gone on record calling this sharp shooting 2-guard one of the best pure shooters in the tournament and today he reinforced this thought even more by once again knocking down 5-9 3-pointers.  He also finished with 19 points, eight rebounds, and 6-13 field goals and also locked up a spot on the all-tournament team, which will be announced later tonight.  The only other thing that might be worth mentioning in this game was the battle between the two overrated big men.  Obviously we’re talking about 6’9 Soph Nate Fowler from Cincinnati (Moeller) OH, who finished with only six points, rebounds, four assists, 2-9 field goals, 0-1 3-pointers, and 2-2 free throws, and 6’10 Andre Walker from Potomac (The Bullis School) MD, who finished with only three points, one rebound, four blocked shots, 1-4 field goals, and 1-1 3-pointers.  Neither wants to mix it up inside, but at least Walker will block a few shots and he does look good in the airport.  On the other hand, Walker also missed a wide open breakaway dunk and, as a result, Fowler gets the nod in a close call.

The Third Place Game was one of those games where 6’7 Darral Willis from Madison (Memorial) WI was clearly the best player on the court, but Brooklyn (Bishop Loughlin) NY won the game, thanks primarily to the efforts of once again of 6’3Khadeem Carrington, 6’3 Michael Williams, and 6’5 Jayvian DeLaCruz from Brooklyn (Bishop Loughlin) NY, who combined for 11 steals and did a good job of applying pressure out on the perimeter and making Madison Memorial’s guards get into a hurry and speed the game up.  Williams also appeared to regain his confidence after last night’s sub par performance, as he finished with 17 points, two assists, five steals, 7-13 field goals, 1-5 3-pointers, and 2-3 free throws.  Carrington added 16 points, two assists, three steals, 5-13 field goals, 1-4 3-pointers, and 5-7 free throws and DeLaCruz chipped in with 12 points, three assists, three steals, 5-8 field goals, and 2-4 3-pointers.  And to make the story even more interesting is the fact that DeLaCruz is such a major sleeper than even our New York City Editor Ron Naclerio doesn’t know anything about this high energy athletic wing who would be a steal for a lot of people at the mid-major level.  As for Willis, this 6’7 athletic 4-man is extremely quick around the basket, he gets better every time we see him and, after finishing with 22 points, 14 rebounds, and 8-11 field goals in this game, it won’t be too hard to make a case for him being the best post player in the tournament.  Willis also is good enough to be ranked among the top 50-100 seniors nationally and it’s our guess that most of the people reading this have never even heard of him.

The Championship Game was supposed to be a blowout, but it looks like Columbus (Northland) OH had other plans (at least for a half), as they were up by as many as eight early in the game and only trailed by two points at intermission.   However, Providence went on a 12-0 run to start the second half and, by the 7:27 mark in the score was 50-32 and it appeared that Providence was well on its way toward this being a good old-fashioned ass kicking.  But then Providence slowed the game down and coasted from there to an impressive 69-43 win.  6’5 Grayson Allen from Jacksonville (Providence) FL was named the Tournament MVP and Howard Ginfinkel was heard saying that he Allen has a chance to become the next John Havlicek and that it is “unbelievable.”  Allen finished with 26 points, nine rebounds, four assists, 9-14 field goals, 3-5 3-pointers, and 5=7 free throws.  6’5 Christian Terrell added 16 points, eight rebounds, five assists, 4-10 field goals, 0-3 3-pointers, and 8-9 free throws and 6’9 Jr Wyatt Walker from Jacksonville (Providence) FL finished with 11 points, 12 rebounds, three assists, 4-6 field goals, and 3-4 free throws.  Terrell and Walker also were named to the All-Tournament Team, along with 6’7 Darral Willis from Madison (Memorial) WI,  6’2 Grant Benzinger from Cincinnati (Moeller) OH, 6’3 Khadeem Carrington from Brooklyn (Bishop Loughlin) NY, 6’5 Jr Luke Kennard from Franklin (H.S.) OH, 6’4 A.J. Bush from Norcross (H.S.) GA, 6’3 Russell Sangsterfrom Potomac (The Bullis School) MD, 6’1 Solomon Cooper from Myrtle Beach (H.S.) SC, 6’3 Romello Trimble from Arlington (Bishop O’Connell) VA, 5’9 Shemar Waugh from Columbus (Northland) OH, 6’7 Soph Seth Towns from Columbus (Northland) OH, and 5’10 Soph Alterique Gilbert from Lithonia (Miller Grove) GA.  Waugh also was named Mr. Hustle Award. Towns won the Sportsmanship Award, and Gilbert took home the Defense Award.  And, believe it or not, 6’8 Jr Luke Mayefrom Cornelius (Hough) NC was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player.  However, Maye did not even make our list of candidates on our unofficial list of players who we thought should be on the all-tournament.  Instead, we thought players like 6’3 Derek McKeithion from Columbus (Northland) OH., 6’4 Tyler Lindquist from Madison (Memorial) WI,6’4 Frosh Jaliek Felton from Mullins (H.S.) SC, 6’5 Jayvaian DeLaCruz from Brooklyn (Bishop Loughlin) NY, and 6’7 Michael Williamsfrom Brooklyn (Bishop Loughlin) NY should have been on the all-tournament team, along with most of the guys mentioned above.  And our vote for the Most Outstanding Player, which went to the player not on the winning team, would have gone to 6’2 Grant Benzinger from Cincinnati (Moeller) OH.

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