Alex Schwartz, Connecticut Recruiting, DePaul Recruiting, Florida Recruiting, Iowa Recruiting, Kentucky Recruiting, Louisville Recruiting, memphis Recruiting, Providence Recruiting, Rutgers Recruiting, St. John's Recruiting, St. Joseph's Recruiting, Syracuse Recruiting, Temple Recruiting, UCLA, Villanova Recruiting, Xavier Recruiting
2012 VILLA CLASSIC RECAP
by Alex Schwartz
GLENSIDE, Pa. – Five teams from New York City, four from Philadelphia and one from New Jersey made their way to Arcadia University yesterday for the sixth annual VILLA Classic. Although most of the games ended with lopsided scores, there was still some nice talent on display.
There are several players who could stake claim to this honor, but we are going to go with Brandon Austin. The future Providence Friar was not amongst the players who dropped 20+ points, but he turned in the best all-around performance. The versatile senior from Imhotep Charter (PA) is capable of playing multiple positions, but, as he showed on Saturday, he is best suited at the point guard spot. Austin is capable of both scoring the ball himself—he finished with 18 points against Lincoln (NY)—and facilitating things for others. He runs the offense quite adeptly and is a superb defender. The 6-foot-6 Austin locked up and forced steals, but he was also able to block shots around the rim. His combination of size, skill and length allows him to impact the game in multiple ways. Additionally, the No. 47 ranked player in the NBE Sports Class of 2013 Top 125 has a nice feel for the game.
TOP SLEEPER PERFORMER
Jaequan Brown of Wings Academy (NY) is known to some extent, but he showed on this day that he can flat out play. The 6-foot-4 small senior forward was able to play down low and get things done around the rim despite his lack of size. He has a nice spin move in the post that he was able to use to get going early in the game. Brown has a good, strong frame and can pass the ball adeptly. In addition, he can knock down shots from beyond the 3-point line. His impressive overall offensive skill set makes him pretty difficult to defend. The class of 2013 prospect is definitely a prospect who should be able to find his way to a low-major Division I school in the fall.
OTHER TOP PERFORMERS
Khadeen Carrington was the leading scorer on the day and actually went over the 1,000 point mark for his career in the nightcap. A 6-foot-3 class of 2014 shooting guard, Carrington poured in 28 points for Bishop Loughlin (NY) and was nearly unstoppable in transition.
Hakeem Baxter had 25 points in a win for Philadelphia Electrical & Technology Charter (PA), yet managed to do so in a fairly quiet way, somehow. The 6-foot-2 class of 2013 point guard has a strong frame and can really attack the basket off the bounce.
Marvilio Berroa was actually the player from Wings Academy (NY) who was named MVP, not Brown. The 6-foot-3 class of 2013 shooting guard had 16 points, all of which came in the second half, as he showcased a nice shooting stroke.
Tavaris Headen of Camden (NJ) might not be a well-known player, but the class of 2014 prospect made a name for himself on Saturday, scoring 14 points. The 5-foot-11 point guard can hit from deep, attack the rim and also distribute the ball.
Shaquille McFarlan is not one of the bigger names on Lincoln (NY), but he turned in an impressive outing for the Railsplitters and finished with 13 points. A 6-foot-1 class of 2014 combo guard, McFarlan is a big-time 3-point shooter and he was easily the squad’s top player.
Doudmy Saint Hilaire outshined a pair of South Shore (NY) senior teammates who have signed with Division I programs. He might be undersized as a shooting guard at 6-foot-1, but the class of 2014 prospect gets to the rim, finishes well through contact and ended with 13 points.
Rysheed Jordan, the No. 17 ranked player in the NBE Sports 2013 Top 125, dropped in 25 points for Vaux (PA) and showed some major improvement on his jumper. Jordan is an athletic 6-foot-3 point guard who has some impressive athletic ability and can really attack the basket.
Malik Starkes of Math, Civics & Sciences (PA) is one of the most underrated players in the nation in the class of 2014. A 6-foot-4 shooting guard, Starkes scored 18 points and impressed with a number of major dunks as well as nice court vision and quality body control.
Michael Watson, Jr. was one of the top shooters on display at Arcadia, as the 6-foot junior shooting guard knocked down six 3-pointers for Thomas Jefferson (NY). Watson might not have the best size, but he was really hurting P.E.T. Charter (PA) en route to 21 points.
Jai Williams, a future St. Joe’s Hawk, did a great job of finishing down low and ended with 18 points for Philadelphia Electrical & Technology Charter (PA). The 6-foot-9 class of 2013 center has a big frame to go along with strength and power, all of which he uses to his advantage.
Villanova head coach Jay Wright and Temple head coach Fran Dunphy were both in the building for the last game of the night, which featured Vaux (PA) and Bishop Loughlin (NY). Wright was accompanied by assistant coach Billy Lange . . . UConn head coach Kevin Ollie was supposedly in the gym, but we did not see him firsthand. UConn-signee Terrence Samuel plays for South Shore (NY) . . . Assistant coaches from Drexel (Bobby Jordan), FIU (Kimani Young), UMES (Marlon Terry), and Xavier (Ashley Howard) were there too . . . FIU-commit Jaquan Lynch did not play for Thomas Jefferson (NY) . . . Villanova players James Bell, Tony Chennault, Dylan Ennis, Darrun Hilliard, and JayVaughn Pinkston were at Arcadia, as was Temple’s Khalif Wyatt.
Amir Maddred, a 6-foot-7 class of 2013 power forward from Camden (NJ), listed a lone scholarship offer from Kennesaw State. In addition, he said he is hearing from Rider, Delaware, Wagner, and Bucknell. He took an unofficial visit to Wagner in May and plans to take official visits after the season. Maddred has no favorites at this point in time.
Malik Starkes said that he actually does not have any scholarship offers right now. However, he did say that he is fielding interest from UConn, Xavier, Iowa, Memphis, DePaul, and Temple. UConn is his favorite of those schools, but he noted, “I’d go to Kentucky if I have [an offer and I like] Kansas.” Starkes does not have a timetable for a commitment. He has been on unofficial visits to Temple, La Salle and St. Joe’s, but he mentioned that the latter two are not as involved with him anymore.
Isaiah Whitehead, ranked No. 19 in the NBE Sports Class of 2014 Post-July Top 75, listed scholarship offers from Louisville, UCLA, Florida, St. John’s, Rutgers, and Syracuse, plus interest from Kentucky. There are others on the list that the 6-foot-4 shooting guard could not recall. Whitehead, who has no favorites, has unofficially visited UCLA, St. John’s and Syracuse. He has no other visits planned and is expecting to make his decision “probably about this time next year.” He confirmed that he does not plan to sign early.
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