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2013 NBPA TOP 100 HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL CAMP — FINAL RECRUITING NOTES
By Matt Whitfield, Mid-Atlantic Recruiting Analyst
The National Basketball Players Association (NBPA)’s 20th Anniversary of the NBPA Top 100 High School Basketball Camp kicked off Wednesday at the University of Virginia’s John Paul Jones Arena in Charlottesville and concluded over the weekend. Media was allowed to begin attending sessions on Thursday and NBE was back on the road and in attendence.
The NBPA Top 100 High School Basketball Camp was created by the NBPA in 1994 to assist elite high school student-athletes in the development of their basketball and life skills. Throughout the last 20 years, the Camp has grown into one of the most highly touted and renowned camps of its kind and has seen hundreds of its participants go on to successful NBA careers. You can follow the camp on Twitter @Top100Camp and be sure to follow @NBESports for all of our updates as well.
To close our recruiting updates, NBE caught up with Craig Victor, Satchel Pierce, Khadeem Lattin, Abdul-Malik Abu, Brandone Francis, Skal Labissiere, Chinanu Onuaku, Kevon Looney, Trevon Blueitt and Trayvon Reed, which you can see below…
Craig Victor, the 6-foot-8, 200-pound power forward out of St. Augustine High School in New Orleans (LA) mentioned that OHIO STATE, KENTUCKY, LSU and ARIZONA are the schools that currently stick out the most in his recruitment. While he has yet to receive an offer from John Calipari and the Wildcats, Victor has made it a priority to impress UK this summer on the AAU circuit.
“I promise you after July I believe I will have an offer from Kentucky,” said Victor, adding they would definitely be in his top five if they offered when he cuts his list.
Big men always draw attention as a precious commodity in college basketball recruiting circles and Kiski School’s Satchel Pierce definitely fits the description of a big man at 6’10 and 250 pounds. Expect Pierce to be closely evaluated by a variety of college coaches at different levels this summer, one of which is expected to be DUKE, as Nate James has been staying in touch.
“He just said he’s interested and if I keep getting better an offer will come,” said Pierce, adding “they [DUKE] want me to come on a visit as soon as possible, so we’re trying to figure it out.”
Pierce sees himself fitting in with the Blue Devils and their style of play.
“I like their style of play,” he said. “They get it to the bigs, the Plumlees, they get a lot of touches and they hustle. And they get up and down so I’d think I’d fit in there.”
Pierce also rattled off KANSAS STATE, FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL, KENT STATE, DREXEL, DUQUESNE, CLEVELAND STATE, MIAMI (OH) “and a few others” he is hearing from.
Khadeem Lattin, 6-foot-9 Center from Houston (TX) is in high demand in the Class of 2014 already considering offers from LOUISVILLE, GEORGETOWN, OKLAHOMA, USC, TEXAS A&M, MEMPHIS, TEXAS, BAYLOR, SMU and HOUSTON. Lattin also singled out VILLANOVA and MARQUETTE, among others, that have been showing a lot of interest lately. He also has four schools he is planning to get a better look at in the near future.
“I’m taking an unofficial [visit] for sure to USC, GEORGETOWN, OKLAHOMA and LOUISVILLE,” said Lattin.
As for a scouting report, we went right to the source and Lattin broke down his own game very well.
“I’m pretty sure I’m raw offensively,” he said. “I’m more of a defensive player. I have a defensive set of mind. I love to be the hardest player on the floor anytime I’m on the floor and I hope to just bring energy to whatever college team I go to.”
Brandone Francis has been one of the breakout performers of the spring and that looks to be continuing right into the summer. The 6-foot-5 shooting guard who attends Arlington Country Day in Jacksonville (FL) singled out CONNECTICUT as the school recruiting him the hardest with FLORIDA, LOUISVILLE, OKLAHOMA STATE, MIAMI and FLORIDA STATE also working hard in his recruitment.
“My dad [who lives in Boston] will support me wherever I go, but yeah [his location has an impact] and I’ve gotten to know [UCONN head coach Kevin] Ollie real well,” he said.
Impressive 6-foot-7, 233-pount power forward Abdul-Malik Abu has drawn the interest of KENTUCKY and knows the importance of next month’s live period will have in how his recruitment with the ‘Cats moves along.
“They’re [KENTUCKY] going to follow me this coming live period, so that’s pressure on me to do more and play at the highest level and show them that I can play at KENTUCKY,” said Abu. “They watched me in April at the EYBL.”
While most of the nation is on his recruitment, he also singled out KANSAS, FLORIDA, NC STATE and TENNESSEE as new interest.
Karl Towns is an absolute beast, a manchild! He was almost unstoppable in the game NBE watched him this weekend. While he could add some muscle though before getting to KENTUCKY in 2014, you can expect UK will be the team to beat when he is there. At 6-foot-10 he has good wingspan which makes him play bigger and he was a true beast under the rim. Mature beyond his years as he knows how to work the double team and even then is tough to beat because of his size and strength. To top it all off…he needs to be guarded out past the three-point arc as his range continues to expand.
Skal Labissiere was a new name for NBE to learn about at the Top 100 Camp and the 6-foot-9, Class of 2015 prospect from Cordova (TN) did not disappoint. Labissiere gets it down underneath at both ends of the court with a silky-smooth style combining excellent size, strength and athleticism. Still a little raw from a skills standpoint, but will be an elite recruit in his class as he will continue to improve.
MEMPHIS, KENTUCKY, AUBURN, KANSAS, UCLA, TENNESSEE and GEORGETOWN were schools mentioned by Labissiere this weekend to NBE, trying to dispel the notion it is just a two-school race already for him.
“It’s not really between the two [KENTUCKY and MEMPHIS],” he said.
Chinanu Onuaku is a 6-foot-9 big man in the Class fo 2014 who is running with DC Assault on the AAU circuit. He has a last name familiar to college basketball fans as he is the younger brother of former Syracuse Orange big man Arinze Onuaku. The younger Onuaku currently has a school list of SETON HALL, DEPAUL, XAVIER, VIRGINIA TECH, CINCINNATI, UCONN, MARYLAND, VIRGINIA, KANSAS STATE and RUTGERS.
“I’m a good defensive player and I need to get better on the offensive end,” Chinanu commented on his own game.
He has already taken unofficial visits to GEORGETOWN, MARYLAND and SETON HALL.
It was a year ago at the Top 100 Camp where Kevon Looney make a huge splash nationally and he has only cemented his status as an elite recruit in the Class of 2014. The 6-foot-8 power forward out of Milwaukee (WI) expanded a little bit more with NBE on his recruitment from GEORGETOWN and DUKE when we caught up to him this time around in Virginia.
“They have a great coach” Looney said of JT III and GEORGETOWN. “I’ve been in contact a little bit and even more since I gave my phone number to him.
He came to my school and talked about the offense and told me to watch Otto Porter.”
Looney also talked about the Blue Devils and their efforts.
“Duke is a great program and a great school,” he said. “I have a pretty good relationship with Coach K and Nate James, there pretty cool coaches. I like Duke a lot.”
They are not the only two involved as Looney also mentioned FLORIDA, MICHIGAN, MICHIGAN STATE, TENNESSEE, WISCONSIN, GEORGETOWN, STANFORD, UCLA and UCONN in the mix.
6-foot-5 small forward Trevon Blueitt of Indianapolis has the usual suspect standing out in his recruitment for a highly regarded recruit in his region.
“The hardest [recruiting me] probably right now is MICHIGAN, INDIANA and BUTLER,” he said.
Blueitt went into detail about the effort of the aforementioned trio.
“MICHIGAN [coach John Beilein], he just lets his players [play]. He trusts everybody. He builds them up during the offseason and he just installs the trust in them to make plays. With BUTLER, Coach Stevens is a great coach. One year he had a team full of not really know people except for two players and they made it to the Final Four for the second time, so that’s always a good type of coach. INDIANA, Coach Crean I’ve always loved them. I watched him coach Steve Novak and Dwayne Wade. I’ve always had a good relationship with him over the past four years or so.”
In addition to those three Blueitt also mentioned PURDUE, XAIVER, NOTRE DAME, ILLINOIS, KANSAS STATE, FLORIDA, LOUISVILLE, CINCINNATI, IOWA, PITTSBURGH, NORTHWESTERN, GEORGETOWN, UCLA and VIRGINIA.
Trayvon Reed, a 7-foot, 200-pound C from Georgia listed offers from FLORIDA, MARYLAND, GEORGIA TECH, GEORGIA, AUBURN, BAYLOR, KANSAS and GEORGETOWN this weekend.