NBE Basketball Report
Butler Recruiting

ADIDAS INVITATIONAL — DAY TWO

July 12, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

by ND Kendrick

Indianapolis, IN – Day two of the second July “live period” was in full swing on Thursday and NBE Sports joined coaching staffs from numerous college programs at the adidas Invitational in the Circle City.

Here is a rundown from Thursday’s long day of action…

Standouts:

Stephen Zimmerman (Dream Vision 17) – Zimmerman continues to demonstrate why he may have the brightest future amongst all the bigs in his class. He has a soft shooting touch out to the stripe and an unblockable left-handed jump hook. Defensively his timing is excellent as he blocked away a number of shots. He is still very left hand dominate.

Jeremie Tyler (Indiana Elite 17s) – Tyler is beginning to step his game up to another level. He pushes the ball in transition off the dribble or pass with great pace. Changes speed and directions using the speed and inside out dribble with either hand.

Goodluck Okonoboh (Mass Rivals 17s) – Okonoboh plays with a great deal of passion and effort in the paint. He does a good job of using his body to establish prime position in the paint. He runs well and has plenty of athleticism to catch and score around the basket. Louisville coach Rick Pitino and Indiana coach Tom Crean were very attentive.

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RECRUITING NOTEBOOK (10/31/2012): WIGGINS’ NEWS OVERSHADOWS WILLIAMS’ COMMITMENT

October 31, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

by Alex Schwartz

The past few days have continued to be pretty quiet on the recruiting trail over the past several days. However, there were a couple of top-notch players who did make noise with a decision of one kind or another.

It is rare that a commitment from a top-25 player to one of the nation’s elite programs can be overshadowed by something other than a commitment from a more highly ranked player. Nonetheless, that is the case for this edition of the Recruiting Notebook. The biggest news of the past week was Andrew Wiggins reclassifying from 2014 to 2013.

The 6-foot-7 small forward from Huntington Prep (WV) is the near unanimous top prospect in high school hoops, regardless of class. Wiggins had been ranked No. 1 in the NBE Sports Class of 2014 Post-July Top 75, but he will now move to the top spot in the 2013 class.

Wiggins is a truly elite prospect and will be a tremendous pickup for whatever school he selects. Florida State and Kentucky are considered to be the favorites to land the athletic wing from Ontario, Canada.

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EARLY AUGUST COMMITMENT CATCH-UP: USC HITS TRIFECTA & MORE SCORE COMMITS

August 8, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

USC HITS IMPRESSIVE TRIFECTA

It was a tough season for USC basketball and head coach Kevin O’Neill. The Trojans limped through a 1-17 Pac 12 campaign and finished the season 6-26 overall. The pain of the 2011-2012 season is easing as USC has landed a trio of commitments in the recent weeks that show the program will be climbing back up the conference standings in the coming years with Khalil Dukes, Kendal Harris and Roschon Prince pledging to Southern Cal with verbal commitments.

On Tuesday it was Long Beach Poly’s Prince Committing to USC (Press Telegram) that capped off the impressive run of Trojan commits. Prince checked in at #70 on the NBE Class of 2013 Pre-July Live Period Top 75 and the small forward showed NBE on the AAU circuit this summer he is not afraid to attack the basket and mix things up.
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ORLANDO AAU REPORT — SUNDAY

July 30, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

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by Alex Schwartz

KISSIMMEE, Fla. — Sunday was the final day of the last Live Evaluation Period of July. While the turnout was not as high, there were still a number of Division I coaches in the gym until they had to leave a 5:00 p.m. NBE Sports took in much of the action on Sunday and all but one of the games we watched was from non-Gold Pool teams, allowing us to catch some sleepers. Find out below who shined in their last chance of the summer and also see who leads for a trio of 2013 prospects.

TOP PERFORMER

Nigel Hayes stood out as the easy pick for the top performer spot from Sunday’s action. A 6’7 power forward from Whitmer (OH), Hayes turned in a really nice showing for All-Ohio Red. Hayes has had a great summer and he continued his strong play on Sunday, demonstrating a vastly improved offensive skill set and better motor. Hayes has a terrific frame and is a strong player. He is a quality scorer who can connect on midrange jumpers and is also very comfortable with his back to the basket. Hayes even showed that he has the ability to step out and knock down a shot from beyond the 3-point line. He is a solid overall athlete and it is clear that Hayes is on the upswing as a player and a prospect.
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ORLANDO AAU REPORT – SATURDAY

July 30, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

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By Alex Schwartz

KISSIMMEE, Fla. — Saturday was the final full day of the last Live period this month. Coaches will be back in the gym on Sunday, but must leave at 5:00 p.m. There were quite a few players who excelled on Saturday and it looked like one player had the Top Performer spot wrapped up–until one 2013 wing went bonkers from long range in the nightcap. Also, a trio of big men originally from Africa were quite impressive, two top-five players shined again and a top-100 prospect in 2013 listed a favorite.

TOP PERFORMER

Omar Prewitt needs to be in the discussion of the best shooter in the United States at the high school level. A 6’5 shooting guard out of Montgomery (KY) put on an absolute SHOW for The Ville in the final game of the night. In the first half alone, Prewitt had 22 points and knocked in six 3-pointers. The final stats sheet was swooped away before we could take a look at it, but one of The Ville coaches said Prewitt had 33 points and a D1 assistant told us he hd 34. He finished with eight or nine 3-pointers and was simply unstoppable off the catch. Prewitt is not just a one-dimensional shooter, though. He has a smooth game and is more than capable of knifing through a defense and getting to the rim. Prewitt handles the ball pretty well and he can block shots at the defensive end. His Saturday night performance was one of the best that this writer has seen all month.
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2012 PEACH JAM REPORT – DAY II (PART C)

July 20, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

By Brian Bosworth, National Recruiting Analyst

Thursday evening brought more 17U EYBL action to North Augusta with star players on every court in the facility. NBE had the chance to see its share of the action and here is who stood out to us.

Top Performer of the Night:

Moses Kingsley (Arkansas Wings 2013) – While already a well known name nationally, Kingsley outperformed his reputation in a victory over Cal Supreme. The 6’9” center was an absolute monster on the backboard and protecting the rim. Credited with 11 rebounds and 3 blocked shots, my eyes tell me that both of those numbers are a little bit low. In a game featuring highly touted big men like Marcus Lee, Torren Jones, and his teammate Bobby Portis, Kingsley was unquestionably the best big on the court. His defense has remained consistent but offensively is where he has really taken strides since the April live period. Kingsley was able to finish through contact, flashed good footwork on the block, and even showed a developing off the dribble game. If his offense is ever able to catch up to his prowess on the defensive end, Kingsley could challenge for top center in the 2013 class.
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2012 NIKE SKILLS U – JAYLON TATE & GAVIN SCHILLING UPDATE

July 13, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

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DePaul in hot pursuit of Skills U Chitown pair

By Ron Bailey

When Nike’s Skills U commenced two days ago, it was assumed many college coaches would descend upon Alexandria, VA’s T.C. Williams HS to scout players. That belief has proven true, as bench leaders from programs around the country have done just that.

Of course Big East coaches have been solidly represented. One guy stood out in attendance – DePaul head coach Oliver Purnell. He was one of only two B-EAST head coaches to show up Wednesday or Thursday (Stan Heath of South Florida attended Wednesday evening’s skills session). To his credit, Purnell, going into his third season at DePaul (23rd overall as a head coach), stayed pretty much the whole day Thursday.

Why? Two names: Jaylon Tate and Gavin Schilling, a pair of Windy City products.
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RECRUITING NOTEBOOK (DEVON HALL, STANLEY JOHNSON, JAYLON BROWN)

June 18, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

We still have some stories on individual players from the recently completed NBPA Top 100 High School Basketball Camp to publish and get up on the site in the coming days, but also felt it is a good time to clear out the notebook with some tidbits collected over the weekend outside of the Top 100 camp…

COACHES CALLING DEVON HALL

Last week we published our Class of 2014 Intro: Devon Hall so readers could get a better idea of who Devon Hall is. The 6-foot-5, Class of 2014 point guard is a Virginia Beach (VA) native that attends Cape Henry Collegiate School and performed well on the Boo Williams AAU club in the 17U Nike Elite Youth Basketball League this spring. So it came as no surprise to hear that his number was punched in early and often into the phones of college coaches once the clock struck Midnight on June 15th and players in the Class of 2014 could be contacted by colleges.
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BIG SUMMER AHEAD FOR ANDREW CHRABASCZ WITH BABC

June 13, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Andrew Chrabascz, a 6-foot-7 forward weighing 235 pounds out of Cushing Academy in Massachusetts, enters the summer AAU and camp season with plenty of eyes on him. Top mid-major programs galore have been recruiting Chrabascz and will hold their breath as he hits the AAU trail with powerful BABC for the Nike Elite Youth Basketball League championships at the Peach Jam and end of July events in Orlando (FL). High major programs continue to track the multi-faceted game of Chrabascz, who is a skilled power forward.

One thing is certain, Chrabascz will produce. He is almost like a Georges Niang-lite, whose production last year with BABC on the AAU trail pushed his recruitment from the mid-major range to a schoalrship to Iowa State with plenty of other programs in hot pursuit when he made his decision. On the Oakland leg of the EYBL regular season, Chrabascz showed he is continuing to work towards being an effective face-up 4, and his shooting out to 17 feet or so is worthy of such a position. He was also willing to go inside and mix it up, effectively working on the glass at both ends and also finishing in traffic.
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2012 RUMBLE IN THE BRONX RECAP (PART III)

June 11, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

By Brian Bosworth, National Recruiting Analyst

The Rumble in the Bronx came to a close on Championship Sunday with winners being crowned in the 15U, 16U, and 17U divisions. The NJ Playaz took down the 15U crown, Team Scan the 16U, and Sports U was named 17U champions after a thrilling triple overtime win over arch rival NJ Playaz. I was camped out at John Jay College on Sunday which featured some early 16U playoff action followed by 17U semifinals and finals. While Sports U used a balanced attack en route to the championship, the Playaz had the day’s best performer in the losing effort.

Top Performance of the Day:

Shane Rector (NJ Playaz 2013) – As mentioned the Playaz lost a heartbreaker to Sports U in the championship game but Rector was a dominant force individually throughout the day on his team’s path to that game. His improvement over the past 12 months has been fun to watch and speaks to Rector’s tireless work ethic. A year ago at the Rumble I wrote about Shane after he scored 25 or so points without taking a shot outside of 4 feet. His game used to be all to the rim with little to no outside shot in his arsenal. Fast forward a year and the 3 point shot has become a major weapon for Rector as defenders can no longer go under the screen without being punished. He has also improved drastically as a floor general running a team and being a leader. No longer just an athletic combo guard, Rector has successfully made the transition to a full time point and his recruitment should soon reap the benefits.

NBE’s Alex Schwartz was able to catch up with Rector Friday night, along with Saturday’s Top Performer Dayshon Smith, to get the latest on the recruitment of two of the spring’s fastest rising guards, not only out of NYC, but in the nation: NYC Guards Shane Rector & Dayshon Smith See Recruitment Rise.
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REEBOK SHOWDOWN SERIES – PHILADELPHIA (SATURDAY RECAP)

June 3, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

By Alex Schwartz

PHILADELPHIA – In its inaugural year, the Reebok Showdown Series has managed to attract some quality teams. In fact, the field at the Philadelphia event this weekend is one of the best of any tournament in the month of June. NBE Sports was on hand for much of the day on Saturday and had the chance to take in some impressive performances and talk with some talented prospects.

TOP PERFORMER

Rondae Jefferson: One of the top players in the class of 2013 on a national level, the Chester (PA) star was at his absolute best on Saturday afternoon. Versatile enough to play three positions, the 6’6 Jefferson is best suited as a small forward who can be a secondary ball handler and also provide aid down low. With Jaren Sina not present for Team Final, Jefferson actually played a lot of point guard in this affair and was fantastic in doing so. He has a great feel for the game, sees the floor quite well and knows how to hit the open man. Possessing a great build, quality athleticism and nice strength, Jefferson is also impressive from a physical standpoint. The younger brother of Temple’s Rahlir Hollis-Jefferson, Rondae has an impressive skill set, gets to the cup with ease and can really score it. He continues to improve his game and does not seem to be done making progress.

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MBA SELECT G DEMETRIUS JACKSON IMPRESSIVE ON SPRING AAU TRAIL

May 8, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

MBA Select guard Demetrius Jackson has been opening many eyes on the AAU trail this spring. The Marian (IN) High School standout combines strength and athletic ability to be a dominant backcourt defender on one end of the floor and a dangerous offensive threat finishing in the lane on the other. An improving outside game has been on display this spring and will certainly raise his profile nationally among the top guards in the Class of 2013 in the country.

The 6-foot-1, 182-pound point guard talked to NBE about the qualities college coaches are expressing major interest in him with.

“[Coaches like my] leadership qualities and my ability to make a play for myself and others,” said Jackson. “And also [my] versatility.”

Jackson seemed destined for a quick recruitment a few months ago, but he is slowing things down to take his time as his profile raises from an impressive regional prospect to one of the guards in most demand nationally in the rising senior class. He talked with NBE on his preferred timeline for a decision.

“Fall [is my decision time frame],” he said. “Before my senior season of basketball.”

Most of the Big 10 region is hot on the trail of Jackson, whose current home in Indiana is also not far from South Bend.

Missouri, Illinois, Michigan State, Notre Dame, Butler, Xavier and Florida State,” said Jackson of the schools that are actively recruiting him that he is currently considering. “No leaders [at this time], blessing to have all the schools recruiting me.”

Jackson is looking forward to the summer camp season. Right now the only concrete plans on his schedule is a stop at the Butler Elite camp, but he will fill in the rest of his time as summer nears.

Expect Demetrius Jackson to continue to see a rise in his national profile as a top recruit for the Class of 2013. NBE is looking forward to seeing him throughout the spring and summer months as his recruitment will heat up along with the weather.

MARY KLINE CLASSIC RECRUITING NOTEBOOK

May 6, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

By Alex Schiffer

Austin Colbert, a 6-foot-8 forward who attends the Hotchkiss School in Connecticut. The New Jersey native plays AAU basketball with Team Final in the EYBL. Prior to the underclassman game at the 2nd annual Mary Kline Classic Colbert talked with NBE on his current recruiting situation.

“So far Florida, Baylor, Georgetown, Harvard, Seton Hall are all looking at me,” said Colbert.

At this point in time Colbert is thinking about cutting his list down, but hoping to see some additional offers before doing so.

“I’m currently looking to narrow down my list but it would be nice to pick up a few more offers,” he said.

Since the open evaluation periods of April are now past, Colbert has a clearer view of the schools willing to put more effort into his recruitment and is looking to visit one of the schools entering the picture of late.

Temple is starting to get on my really hard and Baylor, Georgetown, Harvard, Seton Hall are on me mad tight,” he said. “Also Texas is looking at me. I plan on making a trip down to Austin pretty soon.”
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One of the hottest names from the previous two weekends in the April open evaluation period in the Class of 2013 in NYC native Jermaine Lawrence, who is currently attending Pope John XXIII in Sparta (NJ). The 6-foot-9 PF has put a strong of impressive performances together with the New Rens AAU team and his recruitment has quickly taken off.

Cincinnati, Rutgers, St. John’s, UCLA [and] Florida are all looking at me, Miami as well,” said Lawrence.

A couple Big East programs are among the new schools quickly entering the mix following his April performances.

UConn and Villanova as well as Temple have all started with me recently.

Lawrence has no current favorites, but is looking into taking a couple visits in the near future.

“I have no favorites right now but I’m working on making a visit to Rutgers right now as well as Cincinnati,” he said.

Lawrence kept rolling on Saturday night, scoring a game-high 27 points in the underclassman contest of the Mary Kline Classic, earning one of the two MVP honors.
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Jared Nickens, a 6-foot-5 wing out of St. Patrick in Elizabeth (NJ) listed the schools currently recruiting him as VCU, Seton Hall, St. Joe’s, SMU, Georgetown, Charlotte and Mississippi State.

Mississippi State, Georgetown and Charlotte all recently started with me,” he said. “I have a visit to Georgetown June 16th. My current favorite is VCU.”
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Nickens’ teammate at St. Pat’s DeAndre Bembry is also drawing plenty of recruiting interest at this time.

Vanderbilt and Georgetown just showed interest in me,” said Bembry on Saturday night. “Villanova just offered me. UNC-Charlotte and Richmond as well as South Carolina are all giving me looks.”

Bemnbry also mentioned Virginia Tech had been recruiting him hard as well. There are no favorites for Bembry yet, but he is starting to look into which school she would like to visit.

“[I] should be making some arrangements for visits in a few weeks<' said Bembry. "I'm going to try and visit UCF, Georgetown and Villanova.”
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From a pure talent standpoint, Tyler Roberson has as much of a ceiling as anyone in the Class of 2013. The 6-foot-7 forward out of Roselle (NJ) catholic and the NJ Roadrunners AAU club certainly has the recruiting list to back that up as well.

Kansas, Rutgers, Seton Hall, South Carolina [and] Syracuse are all recruiting me,” said Roberson. “Everyone is coming at me really hard.”
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Jaren Sina, the 6-foot-1 point guard out of Gill St. Bernard’s in New Jersey made the switch this spring to Team Final on the EYBL circuit and the added exposure paid off with a Big East offer this past week.

Pittsburgh offered me last week after the Nike EYBL,” said Sina.

Sina, who is coached by his father Mergin Sina at Gill St. Bernard’s was once committed to Alabama. The Crimson Tide remain involved but have plenty of company in the competition for his services.

Northwestern, Pitt, Stanford, Rutgers, Cincinnati, Penn State, Alabama, Butler are all involved,” said Sina. Alabama and Northwestern as well as Penn State there all coming at me pretty hard.”

Ina ddition to the three coming at Sina the hardest, he mentioned three others schools specifically when asked where he might plans visits in the near future.

“I’m probably visiting Pitt, Michigan [and] maybe Villanova.”

Sina produced 10 points and 14 assists in the all-star game contest Saturday night, sharing game MVP honors with Jermaine Lawrence.

NIKE EYBL SESSION #2 – BOO WILLIAMS (TOP PERFORMERS)

May 2, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

By Brian Bosworth, National Recruiting Analyst

Now that a couple of days have passed since the Boo Williams Invitational and I’ve had time to process all the basketball I watched, it’s time to evaluate which prospects performed best this weekend. Below are rankings by class of all the prospects I was able to watch down in Hampton. As always, these rankings are based strictly on performances from the weekend’s tournament and do not reflect my overall views on these players. It should also be noted that given the amount of talent playing at any given time I was unable to see every prospect in Hampton and thus some players miss out on this list because I didn’t evaluate them. Julius Randle, Theo Pinson, Bobby Portis, and Duane Wilson Jr. all played to rave reviews over the weekend and likely would have cracked these rankings if I’d had the chance to see it for myself. Andrew Wiggins was also the best player at the event by all accounts but happened to have his one modest performance the only time I was courtside and therefore he doesn’t squeeze into the rankings either. Enough setup, here’s who dominated in Hampton.

Class of 2013 Rankings:

1) James Young (The Family) – One of the nation’s elite scorers, Young put up points in bunches from all three levels with Kentucky’s John Calipari tracking his every move. In addition to the interest from UK, his admitted leader, Young mentioned scholarship offers from Michigan State, Ohio State and Providence to NBE over the weekend.

2) Jarquez Smith (Georgia Stars) – Smith’s stock arguably rose more than anyone else’s with his weekend performance as the 6’9” forward mixed deep 3 point range with electric above the rim finishes. Florida State and Georgia as the leaders for his services at this point.

3) Kameron Williams (Baltimore Elite) – One of the tournaments purest scorers, Williams dropped 30 in a thrilling comeback victory over King James by unleashing a brilliant shooting display.

4) Keith Frazier (Houston Hoops) – Another pure scorer, Frazier mixed NBA 3 point range with relentless attacking of the rim netting himself 16 free throw attempts in one outing. Arizona, Texas, Texas A&M, Providence, Tennessee, Kansas, Baylor, Marquette, and Kentucky along with local North Texas, were the schools mentioned by Frazier when asked about his recruitment.

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NIKE EYBL SESSION #2 – BOO WILLIAMS (DAY II)

April 29, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

By Brian Bosworth, National Recruiting Analyst

After a short day on Friday, the Boo Williams Invitational found its sea legs with a long day of hoops of Saturday. Action was fast and furious with the majority being the 17U Nike EYBL games with a little bit of 16U and 15U sprinkled in. Mobs of players had big performances in the star filled field and here are a few that NBE had the pleasure of viewing.

Top Performance of the Day:

Tyus Jones (Howard Pulley Panthers 2014) – Jones is the best point guard in America and showed all the reasons why in a masterful performance on Saturday night. A college head coach will be able to turn the ball over to Jones immediately as a freshman and be able to completely trust the young man. He plays with a maturity that is almost surreal for such a young player seemingly making the correct decision with the basketball every time down the floor. Jones can shoot it with range but only does so when the defense calls for it. He can slip passes into the tightest of windows on the money but only does so when the defense takes away an easier option. Perhaps most impressive was how every one of Jones’ passes seemed to land right in the hands of his teammate putting them in a position to score. Jones has a unique understanding of exactly where his teammates want the ball and he puts it right there. His recruitment with be crucial to the entire 2014 class because elite players are going to want to play alongside the elite playmaker. Tyus Jones is a bona fide stud.
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NIKE EYBL SESSION #2 – BOO WILLIAMS (DAY I)

April 28, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

By Brian Bosworth

The Boo Williams tournament got underway on Friday night and with it the second session of Nike’s EYBL circuit. The amount of sheer talent in the gym was almost overwhelming as all eight courts were filled with future division 1 players all night long. Even in a field loaded with star power some players managed to separate themselves from the pack and here is sampling of Friday night’s best.

Top Performance of the Night:

Tahj Shamsid-Deen (Southern Stampede 2013) – Shamsid-Deen made a name for himself last weekend as the EYBL circuit kicked off in Minneapolis and continued his strong play Friday night. The 5’10” lefty point guard was deadly pulling up from midrange going in either direction. He used a quick first step to create space and then elevated over defenders to get off jump shots from 8-18 feet. While impressive scoring the ball for the majority of the game, Shamsid-Deen showed his true worth in the final moments with his team trailing by a point and 15 seconds on the clock. Southern Stampede ran an iso set for Shamsid-Deen and as he had done all game he got a step on his defender and pulled up from 10 feet. The ball slipped through the net giving Southern Stampede a one point lead and ultimately a victory. Both his desire to take the shot and ability to make it in that big spot spoke volumes about Shamsid-Deen’s leadership and accountability at the point guard spot.
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Mernagh: View from the Horizon/Semi’s Set

March 3, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

Detroit Ices Penguins
A lot of folks thought Detroit would be the team to beat in the Horizon League coming into this season. Injuries, coaching, and depth have, at times, stopped the Motown ballers from living up to their potential in the regular campaign but hey, it’s all about the post-season baybay — I changed the spelling because I want you to pronounce it that way, it’s kind of a play on words and a kind of non-shoutout to that announcer that used to coach the Titans — and this group may have righted the ship just in time. 20-13 ain’t too shabby, just not good enough for the talent on this team in this writer’s opinion, of course when you have a beast like Eli Holman and refuse to play through him, well….that’s all for another time I guess.

Detroit made shots in this one and it’s really that simple. The Titans shot 60% and then made a lot of noise postgame about sending a message to Cleveland State with their performance, especially Ray McCallum Jr. The Vikings were watching the game and they will face the Titans today in one semifinal. Like I said, the Titans are talented and maybe they’ve turned it around. They beat Jerry Slocum’s team 93-76. We’ll see how they fare against Gary Waters and Crew.

Butler Pounds Milwaukee

71-49 was the score as, guess who, Butler is back in the semifinals hoping to upset league champ Valpo on the Crusaders floor later Saturday. Khyle Marshall had 17 points and 10 rebounds. Butler lost 71-59 last week to Valpo and Brad Stevens was channeling his inner-Jim Calhoun by addressing the fact that Valpo is a very physical team. “Nobody talks about this, but they’re really physical,” Stevens said. “They grab you, they get you, they hit you. They’re tough.” Bryce Drew has to love that!

Should be a great pair of games this evening.

RECRUITING UPDATE: 2013 PG DEMETRIUS JACKSON

January 1, 2012 by · 1 Comment 

Demetrius Jackson has made quite the name for himself in the Midwest as one of the top players in the Class of 2013. While nationally his reputation is slowly increasing, look for the Mishawaka (IN) native to kick start that reputation building this spring on the AAU trail. Several schools have already extended the Marian High School point guard scholarship offers and hope to nail down a commitment before word spreads of the talent the 6-foot-1, 185-lb Jackson possesses on the basketball court.

On the court Jackson has been instrumental in Marian’s 7-2 start this season. The junior is quickly closing in on the school’s scoring record which will likely be broken in his next outing.

“[The] season’s going great, started of slow but now we have it rolling [now],” Jackson told NBE yesterday. “I broke 1,000 points last game, 10 [points] away from the [school]record now.”

While individual achievements like the scoring record and his own recruitment may get most of the attention, like any great point guard, Jackson is thinking team first. His goals for his junior season are all centered around the great team accomplishments he hopes to achieve with his teammates and friends.

“Cutting down the nets with my team, that would be the best memory,” he said.

During the spring and summer AAU season Jackson runs with MBA Select, one of the better Midwest programs. A basketball junkie, Jackson just loves the opportunity to lace up the sneakers and play ball.

“Playing against great competition and meeting and making new friends,” said Jackson of his favorite part of being with MBA Select, “also just hooping, love that!”

Even with the accolades that come with being one of the top players in the nation, Jackson is never satisfied with himself. He is always striving to be a better basketball player in all facets of his game. When asked where he wanted to improve the most before his time is done at the high school level, Jackson could not single out any one area.

“Everything in my game can improve, so when I go to the gym I work on it all, even if it takes me all day,” Jackson said. “You can never stop getting better.”

The coaches currently recruiting Jackson certainly love to hear that and he will make one program very lucky. Jackson mentioned schools such as Butler, Xavier, Notre Dame, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan State and Georgetown as being active in his recruitment that he is currently considering, also indicating that is not a closed list at this time.

Jackson took an unofficial visit to Notre Dame recently and was on hand to see Mike Brey’s club upend Pitt in their BIG EAST conference opener. Following the game Jackson was spending time soaking up the victory with Irish players and staff members. There was some internet chatter that a college decision could come soon for Jackson, but he was not ready to tip his hand, or even name a leader when asked by NBE yesterday.

“Yes, I was at the game, good win for the Irish,” said Jackson. “As of right now all the schools are number one. [I'm] just happy to even have schools recruiting me.”

Probably not as happy as he will eventually make one school when he does decide. What will factor into his college decision and when will he come to his decision? “Family, friends, atmosphere, basketball program and whenever God lets me know.”

Until then we will wait…but, do not be surprised to see him blow up nationally if this spring he is still an uncommitted prospect. MBA Select will be a team to watch just to see for yourself how good Demetrius Jackson is.

Below are some Demetrius Jackson highlights from MichiganPrepStars.com from the summer when he was playing with MBA Select:







2011 CITY OF PALMS REPORT — TOP PLAYER PERFORMANCES

December 23, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

By Brian Bosworth, National Recruiting Analyst

Now that the 2011 City of Palms Classic has come to a close it’s time to put some measure on what I saw this week. Below are player rankings by class based on performances from this week alone. While they do impact my overall perception of these players, they are rankings strictly of what I saw in Florida this week.

Top 2012 Players:

1. Isaiah Austin (Grace Prep) – signed with Baylor – Austin was more committed to play inside on offense than he has been in the past and still rebounded and blocked shots at the highest level. He looked poised to challenge Shabazz Muhammad for top player in the class throughout the rest of the reason.

2. Shabazz Muhammad (Bishop Gorman) – It speaks to Muhammad’s talent that after a subpar week by his standards he still slots in at # 2. He was the most persistent scorer at the tournament, getting his points every way imaginable.

As for his recruitment, Muhammad told NBE on the opening day of the event that he has no timetable for a decision and sounds as though he’ll wait right up until the spring signing period to make his call. He listed an up-tempo style and a program that gets its players to the next level as the two most important factors in his decision making process. When the time comes Muhammad will be choosing from his final 6 of UCLA, Kansas, Duke, Kentucky, UNLV, and USC.
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CITY OF PALMS REPORT – DAY TWO

December 18, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

By Brian Bosworth, National Recruiting Analyst

Day 2 at the City of Palms Classic featured national powerhouses Mater Dei (CA), Arlington Grace Prep (TX), and Miller Grove (GA) in action for the first time. Despite these big names the game of the day was St. Raymond’s (NY) come from behind overtime victory over Trinity (KY) in which they trailed by 15 in the 4th quarter. Through sheer force of will and a couple of standouts outlined below they stormed all the way back and then overcame another 5 point deficit in overtime. It highlighted a fun day of big time competition with quite a few monster individual performances.

Top Performer of the Day:

Isaiah Austin (Arlington Grace Prep 2012) – signed with Baylor – Austin is often criticized for floating on the perimeter and not using his 7 foot frame to score inside. If today’s performance is any indication, he has heard the critics and made an adjustment. Matched up against future Ohio State defensive end Adolphus Washington, Austin went to work in the lane and stayed there all day. He dominated the paint on both ends of the court finishing with 20 points, 12 rebounds, and 11 blocks. While still a finesse player, Austin seems to have learned to use his extreme length to get into easy positions to score and then use his soft touch to finish plays. He even initiated contact with the 6’6” beast of man Washington and worked his way to the free throw line. On the defensive end, Austin basically sent back every shot attempt within 6 feet and caused opponents to settle for jumpers because of his presence. Today’s performance was one that makes it clear why Austin has as much long term potential as any member of the 2012 class.
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