St. Mary’s Recruiting
By Brian Bosworth, National Recruiting Analyst
The 2012 Hoophall Classic came to a close on Monday highlighted by four national games all broadcast live on national television. Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski and Kentucky front man John Calipari were front and center all day each flagged by two assistants. They were joined by a host of other coaches all trying to make an impression on the many uncommitted talents in action. While Shabazz Muhammad, Jabari Parker, Tony Parker, and others were the focus of these coaches, a senior guard who has already made his college decision stole the show and he receives top billing today.
Katin Reinhardt (Mater Dei 2012) – signed with UNLV – After watching Reinhardt for a week at the City of Palms in Florida last month I came away seriously underwhelmed. He struck me as a player that forced shots, was careless with the ball, and cared more about making the flashy play than the right play. After dropping 35 points on a Hoophall Classic record tying nine three-pointers it’s safe to say he has changed my mind. Reinhardt got in the flow early with an easy dunk and once he found a rhythm the shots just kept falling and falling. Equally adapt off the catch or the dribble he made shots from well beyond the college 3 point line and was able to get enough elevation on his shot to make them over defenders. Not exclusively a shooter (although it was clearly his calling card today) Reinhardt used a low, tight crossover to get in the lane and finished a pair of floaters over help defenders. He also showed passion and aggression on the defensive end forcing Uconn commit Omar Calhoun into a miserable 6-22 shooting day. For now I’m willing to label Reinhardt a streaky shooter that has the ability to single handedly take over a game when he’s on a hot streak. If he can string together consistent performances like today’s I’ll be forced to simply label him a great shooter.
By Brian Bosworth, National Recruiting Analyst
Each day at the City of Palms Classic seems to be more intense than the last. Today started off slowly with a mostly empty gym but it slowly filled up as the night wore and the semifinal matchups approached. When it was time for the tip of Montverde Academy and Grace Prep in the 1st semifinal there wasn’t an empty seat in the building. Through a delay when a power outage sapped the scoreboard, constant breaks to wipe up an increasingly slippery court, and a wildly overheated Florida gym, high level basketball remained the focus. A select group of players stood a cut above the rest and they are outlined below.
Top Performance of the Day:
Julius Randle (Prestonwood Christian 2013) – In the final game of the night with a chance to play for the title on the line Randle was brilliant. He tallied 31 points and 15 rebounds on 12 of 18 shooting while facing consistent double and triple teams in the post. Randle’s game has evolved as his skills have developed and while he still makes his living down low he showed the ability tonight to lead the break and facilitate offense for others from the perimeter. His shooting range now extends to the college 3 point line and he can comfortably handle the ball enough to help his guards break the press. Offensively, Randle has very few holes in his game but on the other side of the ball he does still need work. He has a tendency to sulk after a turnover and then miss a defensive assignment because he hasn’t let the play go. While not uncommon for a young player, stars of Randle’s caliber are held to a higher standard. If cleared up, there is nothing standing in his way from overtaking Jabari Parker as 2013’s top prospect.
By Raphielle Johnson
With the second ten-day open period of the month on the back end it would have been easy for teams still playing to perform in a sluggish manner. But that didn’t happen on Wednesday, especially at the Desert Duel Memorial Tournament where a few games needed overtime to render a decision. One of those games was the matchup between Long Island Lightning Blue and Seattle Rotary Select, with the Lightning making up a four-point deficit in the final 30 seconds of regulation and going on to win by the final score of 69-65.
The guard tandem of Kareem Canty (2012; postgrad) and Melvin Johnson (2012) made crucial plays down the stretch with both being able to get to the rim off the dribble. Canty’s more of a scoring point who was also to make some nice passes to his big men after beating his man off the dribble, and the pull-up jumper he says he’s been working on was on display as well.
By Lauren Kirschman
The first 10-day live evaluation period of July has come and gone in nearly a blink of an eye. Its been a fun trip to Akron (OH) and Morgantown (WV) and points in between, north and south as well as east and west. While the coaches and throngs of media head home to their own beds finally, the Hoop Group’s West Virginia Jam Fest will carry on another day.
Tomorrow morning the event’s Gold Semifinals will take place. In the 17U bracket Team Philly will take on Team Takeover – Hoop Magic in one semifinal. Team Philly got past Long Island Lightning – Blue in one quarterfinal and the Hoop Magic-based squad upset Team 94 out of California in another quarterfinal.
The other half of the last four standing will be a match-up between the NY Gauchos and Hoop Heaven Heat of NJ who got past the Jersey Shore Warriors in a thrilling ending. The Gauchos won a hard fought affair with East Coast Elite in their quarterfinal match-up.
NBE caught up with a trio of standouts on Friday and below has the latest recruiting information on ’12 Blaise Mbargorba, ’13 Mark Williams and ’13 Elijah Brown for readers to enjoy…