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Washington State Recruiting

RECRUITING NOTEBOOK (4/1/2013): RECRUITING TRAIL HEATING UP ONCE AGAIN

April 1, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 

by Alex Schwartz

There has been a lot of news in the world of high school hoops in the past few weeks, including a few talented juniors making early commitments, an elite senior ending his recruitment and some high-profile players in setting announcement dates.

One of the best players in the nation, Julius Randle, declared his intentions to attend Kentucky. The 6-foot-9 power forward from Prestonwood Christian (TX) opted for the Wildcats over Florida, Kansas and Texas. Randle joins an absolutely loaded seven-man 2013 recruiting class for UK that many are calling the greatest group ever assembled.

Also, according to Jason Jordan of USA Today, Julius Randle has been added to the McDonald’s All-American game. He was initially ineligible since he missed more than half the season—he was injured—yet has been added anyway. Randle is one of six players in the game headed to Kentucky next year.

One-time Murray State commit Demarcus Croaker is now headed to Texas for his college ball, per Reggie Rankin. He also noted that the class of 2013 prospect selected Texas over Murray State this time around. Croaker is a 6-foot-3 shooting guard from Jones (FL).

Gavin Schilling of Findlay Prep (NV) became the first member of Michigan State’s 2013 recruiting class. The 6-foot-9 power forward tweeted his commitment to the Spartans. He selected MSU over Minnesota, UCLA and Villanova.

Rutgers landed a pledge from JuCo prospect Chris Griffin of Wabash Valley College (IL), according to Adam Zagoria of ZagsBlog.com. Griffin is a 6-foot-7 small forward in the class of 2013.

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RECRUITING NOTEBOOK (11/5/2012): COMMITMENT FRENZY HEATS UP AS SIGNING PERIOD NEARS

November 5, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

by Alex Schwartz

We only had one Recruiting Notebook last week, so there is a lot to get through in this one. Thus, we’re going to go with a bit more of a quick, rapid fire style this time.

First off, Baylor picked up a pledge from 6-foot-9 center Dominic Woodson of Huntington Prep (WV), according to Scout.com’s Evan Daniels. The big man is ranked No. 37 in the NBE Sports Class of 2013 Post-July Top 125 and is the second top-40 prospect to pop for Baylor in three weeks. Woodson’s other finalist was North Carolina State.

 

Earlier today Austin Nichols tweeted he had committed to Memphis.   Nichols, ranked #75 in the NBE rankings, is another major in-state coup for Josh Pastner and the Tigers over in-state rival Tennessee.

LSU landed a big-time commitment from Jarrell Martin of Madison Prep Academy (LA), per Ben Love of Tiger Sports Digest. The 6-foot-8 power forward is ranked No. 66 in the NBE Sports Class of 2013 Post-July Top 125. He is the third player in the top 75 to pledge to LSU in this class.

ESPN.com’s Reggie Rankin had the news that Jajuan Johnson of Southwind (TN) had selected Marquette. The 6-foot-3 shooting guard is ranked No. 63 in the NBE Sports Class of 2013 Post-July Top 125 and joins two other top-75 ranked prospects in Marquette’s class. Johnson chose Marquette over Alabama and Miami.

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RECRUITING NOTEBOOK (10/22/2012): COMMITMENTS BEGIN TO SLOW

October 22, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

 

by Alex Schwartz

Commitments seem to have slowed down a bit over the past several days, but that does not mean we have been without any whatsoever.

In fact, while the total number may be smaller, a few superb seniors did take their names off the board since our last Recruiting Notebook. One Big 12 school landed a top-40 player, while a former Big 12 school also landed itself a top-40 player.

Jonathan Williams III was the top player to commit recently, and he is a huge pickup for the Missouri Tigers. A talented 6-foot-8 power forward, Williams is ranked No. 26 in the NBE Sports Class of 2013 Post-July Top 125. The Southwind (TN) star joins the long list of highly ranked 2013 prospects headed to SEC programs.

Baylor also picked up a major pledge, garnering a verbal commitment from Ishmail Wainright. The 6-foot-5 small forward was at one point briefly committed to Missouri, but then reopened his recruitment.

Wainright is a native of the Show Me State, but he transferred to Montrose Christian (MD) for his junior year and remains that for his final year of high school. He is ranked No. 32 in the NBE Sports 2013 Top 125. The news of his commitment was first reported by Alex Kline of TheRecruitScoop.com.

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REEBOK SHOWDOWN CHAMPIONSHIP RECAP – SUNDAY

July 16, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

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By Alex Schwartz

PHILADELPHIA – The first Live session of July came to an end yesterday evening, and NBE Sports was once again at Philadelphia University for the Reebok Showdown Series Championship. This time it was championship day of the event and it was Sports U that stole the show, beating the Jersey Shore Warriors, 82-74 in OT, to win the U16 division and then coming back to beat the Arkansas Hawks, 59-56, in the Showdown Division. Additionally, the NJ Cyclones knock off Team Nelson for the U17 crown.

TOP PERFORMER

DeAndre Bembry turned in a big-time performance in the championship game of the Showdown Division. The 6’6 combo forward from St. Patrick’s (NJ) was easily the contest’s top scorer, pouring in 24 points and was the only player on Sports U to finish in double-digits. Bembry, a class of 2013 prospect, is a superb slasher who makes his mark by getting to the rim off the bounce and finishing. He has a good body and is a big-time athlete. In the championship game he showed off some range, connecting on a 3-pointer at one point. Bembry rebounds the rock well, runs the floor well and simply produces.

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2012 ADIDAS INVITATIONAL – FRIDAY RECAP

July 14, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

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By Brian Bosworth, National Recruiting Analyst

Friday at the Adidas Invitational brought pool play to a close and marked the start of playoff action. It also allowed a chance to view some of the tournaments younger talent as the 15U pools wrapped up at the main site I’ve been stationed at. Star performances became the norm with one Texas big man standing out as top dog on the day.

Top Performer of the Day:

Jordan Mickey (Urban DFW Elite 2013) – The 6’9” post player was unstoppable in an afternoon playoff victory dominating the paint from start to finish. Mickey has outstanding footwork on the block and can score over either shoulder with either hand. He uses spins, drop steps, and a host of other moves keeping the defense on its heels all the time with his wide array of options down low. Mickey also succeeded from the high post where his 15 foot jumper is deadly and he can use 1 dribble to attack the rim. Still a bit on the slender side, a college weight room will do wonders for Mickey’s development and he projects as a go to low post scoring option within his first couple years on a high major college campus.
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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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KENDAL HARRIS LOOKING TO MAKE UP FOR LOST TIME

June 17, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

By Matt Whitfield

Despite having good athleticism, work ethic and a brother who plays for the Miami Heat, Kendal Harris is one of the less talked about high major point guard prospects in the Class of 2013. Harris thinks that all might change soon due to a good NBA Top 100 Camp showing and being healthy this summer unlike the last and ready to play on the AAU circuit.

Harris’ brother Terrel Harris brother played for Oklahoma State in college and being from Texas not surprisingly Harris has a lot of the Big 12 schools on him, as well as others from coast to coast.

USC, Marquette, Missouri, Washington State, Texas A&M, Texas Tech, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Creighton, LSU, Virginia and TCU,” Harris mentioned as schools after him.
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HIGH SCORING ’13 G ZACH LAVINE HAS A FAVORITE

May 10, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

One of the top prospects in the Class of 2013 on the West Coast is Zach LaVine, a 6-foot-4, 165-pound guard attending Bothell (WA) High School. LaVine has brought comparisons to Steph Curry as a silky-smooth scorer with a slender frame. LaVine enjoyed the recent April evaluation period on the AAU trail where college coaches were out on the road.

“[It was] good to see the coaches out there,” LaVine told NBE. “I just hope they saw all the aspects of my game.”

Speed and scoring ability are always the immediate aspects that stand out with LaVine’s game. He is also a slick passer with a feel for setting up his teammates. There are also areas of his game the rising senior point guard continues to work at improving to prepare himself for the college game in the future, but most of his attention goes toward improving his frame.

“I’m trying to get stronger,” he said.

College coaches have long been aware of LaVine, especially in the Pac 12 conference, but his recruitment has gone national in the recent months. Missouri, Baylor and Texas have recently come into his recruitment and Louisville offered toward the end of the season. Those schools can be added to his long list of other offers that come from Arizona, Arizona State, Washington State, California , Colorado, Gonzaga, UCLA, USC, Utah and Washington. As has been the case for some time, one school on the West Coast continues to lead the pack for his services.

UCLA is my favorite right now,” said LaVine.

LaVine is not quite ready to pull the trugger as he plans to play out the AAU season with Friends of Hoop out of Seattle and asses the situation at that time in regards to his recruitment.

“I think I’ll pick toward the end of AAU season and just comfortability level [will be the biggest factor],” he said of a decision timeframe and likely deciding factor in a school.

College coaches will be back on the road in July and at that time NBE hopes to catch Zach LaVine in action as well. Stay tuned here for any news on his recruitment as this talented Class of 2013 scoring point guard could be off the board by summer’s end. Will UCLA seal the deal? We shall find out!

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

May 1, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

By Brian Bosworth, National Recruiting Analyst

The Boo Williams Invitational wrapped up on Sunday and with it concluded the second session of Nike’s EYBL circuit. Unlike the majority of AAU tournaments Sunday is not playoff day at Boo Williams but rather just continued EYBL regular season play as all 40 teams are competing for spots in July’s Peach Jam. Star performances showed up in droves just as they had on the first two days. Below are a sampling of the best showings NBE has the pleasure of viewing.

Top Performance of the Day:

Kameron Williams (Baltimore Elite 2013) – Despite being undersized for the shooting guard position at 6’2”, 170 pounds Williams is an elite scorer. His most dangerous weapon is the jump shot but labeling him as “just a shooter” is rather short sighted. Players who are strictly shooters rely on others to create open shots for them but Williams is more than capable of creating his own looks. He’s smart enough to know that at his size challenging the trees in the paint is a low percentage shot whereas his jump shot is very efficient. Williams makes deep three balls off the dribble or the catch but is most effective using 2-3 dribbles to create space and then burying midrange shots. In an afternoon comeback victory over King James Shooting Stars he put on a scoring clinic going for 30 points on 11-18 shooting including 5 triples. I honestly don’t recall him missing a shot in the entire second half as his Baltimore Elite squad made their furious comeback. Kam Williams is a scoring machine and not enough high major programs have looked past his lack of elite size to realize that yet.

Alex Schwartz caught up with Williams on Friday night as the Red Hot Williams is Picking Up Recruiting Interest and he proved once again this weekend that more high majors should be in pursuit.
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BUSINESS AS USUAL FOR ISAIAH WATKINS ON SPRING AAU TRAIL

April 16, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

This weekend starting Friday evening colleg coaches will hit the road for AAU events across the country. Stops in Minneapolis, Pittsburgh, Baltimore and areas far and wide will be popular destinations for Division 1-A head coaches and assistants as they are allowed to evaluate talent for the first time in the busy April AAU schedule in a few years. While the intensity of the action is likely to be ratcheted up a few nothches, CIA Bounce big man Isaiah Watkins is taking it all in stride.

The 6-foot-8 Watkins attends St. Benedict’sPrep in Newark (NJ) and performing in front of college coaches is a regular event for him and his Gray Bees teammates. It was one of the reasons why he chose to attend a school like St. Ben’s and play with a powerful AAU program like the Canadian CIA Bounce program, which participates in Nike’s Elite Youth Basketball League (EYBL).

Yet, Watkins is looking forward to showcasing his improvement as a player, but also has goals for himself to continue to impove against the top flight competition he will be facing.
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AREA CODES EASTER CLASSIC REVIEW

April 11, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

By Raphielle Johnson

This past weekend the sixth annual Easter Classic was played at multiple locations in Phoenix. It was a good opportunity to check out some of the better talents in the region, with teams from New Mexico and California also taking part.

And with some of the top prospects showing up it was a good opportunity to ask recruits an important question when it comes to basketball on the West Coast:

What’s wrong with the Pac-12?

The league’s been down for a couple of years now, and with 11 of the conference’s top 20 scorers from this past season moving on there will be a lot of pressure on some highly touted newcomers to pick things up (Arizona likely being the team many pick to win the conference next season).

2013 wing Payton Banks, who played at Orange Lutheran with Arizona signee Gabe York, feels that the conference will bounce back in 2012-13 and the Wildcats are a big reason why.

“[This year] was a bad year for the Pac-12, but this year will change a lot,” remarked Banks when I asked him the question.

2014 point guard Brian Beard and 2013 forward Chancey Hill both pointed to recruiting as the biggest problem for the conference, with Beard citing conference teams being outworked by the likes of Long Beach State and San Diego State while Hill said that the conference needs more diversity (geographically speaking) in recruiting.

Personally speaking, the recruiting issue is where the problem lies when it comes to the caliber of play in the Pac-12 in recent years. Lots of teams throughout the country have players leave school for the NBA after one or two seasons, making those recruits expected to spend three and four years on campus even more important.

Look at national champion Kentucky. While one could definitely argue that the Wildcats were talented enough to win with their youngsters this season, there’s no ignoring the role that senior Darius Miller played on that team. And from a recruiting standpoint there’s Kentucky and then everyone else she looking at who’s coming in annually.

Arizona and Indiana both welcome in outstanding classes this summer, but John Calipari and his staff do a good enough job to bring in a new team that can contend for a national title every year.

If you’re not able to do that you’d better be able to get a good mix onto campus, and that hasn’t happened for the Pac-12 outside of Arizona’s Elite Eight run in 2011. Can the conference come back? Sure it can, provided they win some important recruiting battles for the best talent on the West Coast.

But it’s also going to take the development of players who don’t fall into the “one and done” or two-year categories. That can’t be forgotten when discussing what the conference needs to do in order to return to the pinnacle of western basketball while also regaining national respect.

As for the action there were some high-level products on display, and below are updates on their recruitment along with other standouts this weekend.

G Payton Banks (2013)

Banks is a high-level wing who is on the radar of many of the top teams on the West Coast. A versatile guard with size, when Banks decides to attack the basket with authority he’s a tough player to deal with. That’s the key for him: being in attack mode consistently. Banks holds offers from Arizona State, Colorado, Penn State, USC, UTEP, Washington and Washington State.

G Brian Beard (2014)

The 2014 pass-first point guard was solid if not spectacular for the Compton Magic Black. Speaking with Beard on Saturday, he says that his goal this summer is to improve his perimeter shooting and thus become a bigger threat to opponents offensively. Recently the schools who have shown “medium-to-high” interest are Marquette, Oregon State and San Diego State with none having offered.

G Richaud Gittens (2013)

Gittens is one of three players on the Arizona Stars who stood out this past weekend, displaying some very good athleticism in the open floor. A left-hand dominant player right now, Gittens wants to improve his right this spring/summer. He’s looking for a bigger school that plays an up-tempo style of basketball, and currently has received interest from Colorado State, Drake, UCSB and Weber State. Obviously with his goal being to land at a larger institution this is going to be a big summer for him.

F Chauncey Hill (2013)

The Fairfax product had a good weekend in Phoenix, showing off a high-level motor and finishing ability above the rim. The key for Hill will be how he goes about expanding his offensive repertoire, something than can also be said for club teammate Jordan Bell (who played with ICP in a different event this week). Speaking with Hill, who said that he tries to model his game after Kenneth Faried, he’s looking to become more of a wing player skill-wise as he spends the majority of his time in the paint. Boasting a mohawk that’s dyed blonde on top, Hill has received interest from Colorado, Fresno State, Marquette, San Diego State and Washington but no offers as of yet.

G Jaron Hopkins (2013)

Hopkins is one of the best perimeter prospects on the West Coast; how he’s been unranked by multiple scouting sites is one mystery that’s difficult to explain. If Hopkins gets a step on his defender he’s going to the rim and he’s going with authority. He says he’s been attempting 500-600 jumpers a day in hopes of improving that aspect of his game. Hopkins currently holds offers from the likes of Boise State, Colorado, Colorado State, Pennsylvania, Penn State, San Francisco and Washington State, with interest from Harvard, Stanford and UCLA. Hopkins is aware of the coaching situation at Colorado State (Tim Miles moving on to Nebraska) but that’s something he’s left to his father, also noting that Miles has been in contact with his father since taking over at Nebraska.

G Dorian Pickens (2014)

Pickens is a smooth wing who was able to score in a variety of ways for the Arizona Stars. The recent recipient of an offer from Arizona State, Pickens knocked down perimeter jumpers while also showing off his mid-range game. He’ll need to get better at attacking the basket so opponents can’t play him too close, and he says he’ll also be working at becoming a better defender. He’s looking for a school with good academics that provides a family atmosphere while playing an up-tempo style of basketball. In addition to the ASU offer, Arizona, Boston College and Indiana have shown early interest. When asked if the high number of transfers at Arizona State (12 in three years) would affect how he viewed Herb Sendek’s program Pickens said no, stating that he’s just going to focus on how he meshes with the coaching staff.

F Pablo Rivas (2014)

Rivas is a 6-6 forward with very good athleticism as he’s also a wide receiver for his high school’s football team. And despite his wiry frame Rivas showed off some of the physicality gained from playing football, as he was more than willing to bang with opposing big men. Rivas runs the floor well and has room for growth from a skill standpoint; another summer spent working on his game could yield positive results when it comes to what he’ll be able to do offensively. Looking to major in engineering in college (mechanical and computer being the two disciplines he’s most interested in), Northern Colorado has shown some interest in Rivas. He did say that his “dream school” is Memphis, but this is going to be a big summer for him in terms of improving his skill set if he wants to draw the attention of the future Big East member.

F Paul Watson (2013)

Watson was solid but had a tough weekend due to the fact that he had to play center. To say the least the wing prospect who has received offers from high major programs is not a center. Watson’s a good scorer from multiple areas on the floor but for his sake hopefully they can get some size to help him out. But that doesn’t mean that Watson isn’t’ using this as an opportunity to add to his game, as he’s working on a turnaround jumper and a sweep-through move. Watson currently holds offers from Arizona State, Boise State, Fresno State, Oregon State and Texas Tech, and Arizona, Duke, New Mexico State, UNLV and USC have shown varying levels of interest.

Other Players of Note

G Bryce Alford (2013)

The New Mexico verbal commitment may be known by many for his famous lineage, but he’s a very good player in his own right. Alford played off the ball for much of the weekend, doing a good job of finding looks on the perimeter. Needs a little more work creating off the dribble but to be fair he didn’t man the point much for the Danny Granger Hurricanes.

G Malcolm Allen and G Marcus Allen (2013)

Twins from Las Vegas, these two played well this weekend alongside Jaron Hopkins and Paul Watson. Both are good athletes, with Malcolm showing a little better when it came to getting to the basket. Keep an eye on these two as the spring/summer rolls on, and that should be easy to do given the attention being heaped upon Hopkins and Watson from a recruiting standpoint.

G Sedrick Barefield (2015)

A member of the Compton Magic’s 2015 squad, Barefield is going to be one of the best guards in the country regardless of class by the time he’s a senior. Already ranked among the best guards in his class, Barefield is very good at finding quality looks. Good handle, good shooting form and a solid defender as well.

F Joe Boyd (2013)

The former New Mexico State verbal has bulked up some to match his 6-9 height, and he’s got the strength needed to bang inside. Still has to work on his mid-range jumper and free throw shooting, but he’ll be a good get for someone at the low to mid-major level with a solid spring/summer. At last check (a couple of months ago) New Mexico State remains high on his list, although depending on what happens with Marvin Menzies and the Colorado State opening maybe that changes.

F Kendall Lauderdale (2015)

He’s with Barefield on a Compton Magic 2015 team that recruiting fans are going to want to keep track of in the coming years. Already standing at 6-7, Lauderdale displayed a very good motor in the paint and good athleticism as well. Having his jersey ripped to the point where it looked like something Tarzan would wear didn’t slow him down either (they eventually gave him a new jersey. He’ll be one of the many high-major products on this roster with continued growth and development.

G Dikembe Martin (2016)

Martin can get to the basket off the dribble and while he’s got some work to do on his perimeter shot he was able to knock down a few jumpers as well. His best work may have come in the distribution area, where he set up fellow 2016 prospects Jace Rivera and Martin Tombe inside. This was as part of a Compton Magic 2016 class team that managed to beat a 17U squad on Saturday, and they’re only going to get better.

G Bubba Mears (2012)

Mears hasn’t been able to drum up enough interest scholarship-wise but the 5-9 point guard is a good athlete who also played football in high school. To describe Mears as a “bulldog” defensively would be more than accurate, as he helped lead the Tucson Heat seniors past the Compton Magic Black on Saturday afternoon. Offensively he did a good job of running the show, setting up teammates for quality looks while also using his quickness to get to the basket. Not sure if he goes D-1 due to the height, but he’d be a good late addition for a team in need of a point guard.

G Cullen Neal (2013)

Like teammate Bryce Alford, Neal’s the son of a coach (UNM assistant Craig Neal) who can also get the job done on the court. Neal, a Saint Mary’s verbal, was on the ball for most of the weekend for the Danny Granger Hurricanes and while his shot selection left something to be desired at times there’s no doubt that he can make plays. He’s got good size for a point guard, and he’ll be a very good addition when he steps onto the SMC campus next summer.

G Jeff Van Dyke (2013)

He was one of the good perimeter shooters on a tough Gamepoint 17U Black squad. Very good in catch and shoot situations this past weekend, Van Dyke was also able to create some good looks off of the dribble as well. High-major 2013 big Kameron Rooks didn’t play with them this weekend, which likely opened some things up for Gamepoint’s other 2013 prospects. 2012 wing Nathan Wright spent most of his time inside as a result.

F Arren Wells (2012)

While Alford and Neal are the headliners for the Danny Granger Hurricanes they’ve got some good 2012 big men who are still on the market with Wells being one of them. A good athlete who can finish above the rim, Wells had no problem getting physical inside. Not sure what level he ends up playing at as a college freshman, but with the first open evaluation period coming up in less than two weeks western teams in need of some late size should make it a priority to check in on the Hurricanes.

HOOPHALL CLASSIC 2012: WEEKEND’S TOP PERFORMERS

January 19, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

By Brian Bosworth, National Recruiting Analyst

Now that the 2012 Hoophall Classic has come to a close and I’ve had a few days to process all the basketball I saw it’s time to compile player rankings from the weekend’s performances. Below you will see players ranked by class based solely on their performance from the Hoophall Classic. These rankings are not an opinion on players overall game or potential but rather on the way they performed in Springfield.

2012 Player Rankings:

1) Shabazz Muhammad (Bishop Gorman) – Muhammad only strengthened his place as the top overall player in the 2012 class for his efficient 37 point performance.

2) Kaleb Tarczewski (St Mark’s) – signed with Arizona – In an event loaded with top big men Tarczewski stood out as the top low post offensive option.

3) Katin Reinhardt (Mater Dei) – signed with UNLV – The future Runnin’ Rebel put on an offensive show knocking down nine 3 pointers en route to 35 points in a blowout victory.

4) Kyle Anderson (St Anthony) – signed with UCLA – Anderson’s fingerprints have been all over every one of St Anthony’s 44 consecutive victories and Monday was no different as he compiled 18 points, 10 rebounds, 6 assists, and 5 steals.
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HOOPHALL CLASSIC 2012: MONDAY RECAP

January 18, 2012 by · Leave a Comment 

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.

Top Performer:

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.
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NATIONAL HOOPS FESTIVAL RECRUITING REPORT

December 12, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

On Saturday, Matt Whitfield made the trip to Hyattsville (MD) and DeMatha High School for the 2011 National Hoops Festival event. The early season event is typically one of the favorite stops for NBE on the December schedule and this year did not disappoint with several powerhouse programs headlining the event with a very solid day of action on the court. Here is the scoreboard from Saturday’s contests:

–Bullis 62, Riverdale Baptist 59
–Episcopal 44, Benedictine 38
–Paul VI 65, West Charlotte 58
–Oak Hill 68, Grace Prep 59
–DeMatha 83, Jamesville-Dewitt 57

NBE was able to catch up with players such as Kennedy Meeks, Beejay Anya, Stanford Robinson, Jordan Mickey, RJ Curington, Emmanuel Mudiay and more. See below for the latest in recruiting updates form many of the top uncommitted players participating on Saturday…

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EARLY SIGNING PERIOD CONFERENCE HIGHLIGHTS – PAC 12

November 15, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

By Brian Bosworth, National Recruiting Analyst

Next up on our look at the early signing period results by conference is the Pac 12. Sean Miller has quickly put his stamp on the program at Arizona and reeled in not only the best class in the conference to date, but one can make the argument that the four-player class signed by the Wildcats this period is the best in the country (NBE will reveal their #1 choice tomorrow).

Here is a look at what has transpired on the recruiting trail out West so far…

Top 5 Big 12 Recruiting Classes for 2012:

1) Arizona
Commits – Brandon Ashley (PF), Kaleb Tarczewski (C), Gabe York (SG), Grant Jerrett (PF)
–Sean Miller hit a homerun with four top 50 players. The only possible knock is that Ashley and Jerrett play the same position and could struggle sharing the court but that’s really nitpicking.

2) UCLA
Commits – Kyle Anderson (PG), Jordan Adams (SF)
–Ben Howland was able to draw the East Coast’s top player across the country in point guard Kyle Anderson.

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RICHARD PETERS: UNCOMMITTED BIG MAN A HOT RECRUIT; HAS OFFICIAL VISIT ON TAP

September 26, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

There are not a lot of quality big men prospects left uncommitted in the Class of 2012. However one Canadian big man is still on the board as Richard Peters, who attends Westwind (AZ) Prep, is still looking over his options and keeping an open mind in his recruiting process.

“I’m considering every school, quite open-minded to every school that is recruiting me,” Peters told NBE over the weekend.

Since college coaches have hit the road earlier this month during the contact period Peters said that Clemson, Seton Hall (tickets), Washington State and Washington have come by to watch him work out and express their interest in bringing the 6-foot-10, 255-pound big man into their program. Peters has no favorites, but is looking to take a couple visits in the near future.
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2011 DESERT DUEL MEMORIAL FINAL DAY RECAP: NJ PLAYAZ STORM BACK FOR TITLE

July 29, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

By Raphielle Johnson

The only thing better than the two best teams in an event playing in the title game is those teams putting forth a game for the ages. And that’s exactly what happened when the Mac Irvin Fire and New Jersey Playaz 17U teams met in Tuesday’s title game at the Desert Duel Memorial. Despite trailing by as many as 26 points early in the second half the Playaz found a way back, ultimately winning the game in overtime by the final score of 70-62.

Things most certainly didn’t look good for the Playaz at the start as Mac Irvin jumped them out of the gate thanks to the combination of solid offensive execution and the Playaz’s inability to make shots. The squad from Chicago had everything rolling, especially 2013 stud Jabari Parker who hit just about any shot imaginable in the first twenty minutes.

Steve Taylor (2012) was able to slash to the basket, DePaul commit Billy Garrett Jr. (2013) and Derrick Randolph (2012) made plays in the backcourt and Aaric Armstead (2012) was also a factor. A dunk just before the halftime buzzer made the score 43-20, and a Parker three in the first minute of the second half pushed the lead out to 26. To say the least things did not look good for the Playaz was an understatement.

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LAS VEGAS AAU DAY 3 NOTEBOOK: UPSETS & CLOSE CALLS DEFINE SUNDAY’S ACTION

July 25, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

By Raphielle Johnson

On paper Sunday’s slate of games in both the adidas Super 64 and Las Vegas Fab 48 looked to be locks for the top teams. But many learned (once again) first-hand that games are played on the floor and not on some poster-sized sheet of paper in a gym lobby. The list of victims included the Oakland Soldiers, who dropped their first round playoff game to a Branch West Elite team that looked highly impressive in the first half against Play Hard Play Smart in the nightcap.

Also bounced from the Fab 48 were TP Elite and Team Loaded, both of whom fell victim to the Wisconsin Swing. Zak Showalter (2012) out of Germantown (WI), who scored 29 points in their 90-75 win over Team Loaded, can do a number of things on the floor from his guard position. He caught fire from deep but didn’t simply settle for those shots, also driving to the basket and setting up teammates for good looks as well. Ironically Showalter stated after the game that he’s working on becoming a better perimeter shooter, although he was referring to consistency as opposed to simply making the shot.

That matchup also featured a pair of excellent prospects in NC State commit Tyler Lewis (2012) and Andrew White (2012), who has many top programs after his services. When the ball was in Lewis’s hands things seemed to run smoother for Team Loaded, although the way in which Wisconsin Swing executed offensively it may have taken 100 points for Team Loaded to win the game.
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2011 NIKE EYBL PEACH JAM REPORT (PART V)

July 15, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

By Brian Bosworth

Thursday marked the end of pool play at the Peach Jam and the last opportunity for teams to fight their way into the playoffs. For some teams who know they are going to be on the outside looking in it is the last opportunity to perform in front of college colleges this week. With the stakes raised the play became even more intense and some players will able to stand above the rest…

Brandon Ashley (Oakland Soldiers/2012) – Ashley has been having a monster work and continued that trend this morning. After dominating from the low block when I watched him on Tuesday night, Ashley showed off his face up game in this contest. He hit multiple 18 foot jumpers from the baseline and once he established that shot used a shot fake and a couple of dribbles to get to the rim. He was in attack mode throughout the game earning himself 12 trips to the free throw line and converting 9 of them. Ashley’s handle, while adequate, will need to get better as his game progresses. He can use 1 or 2 dribbles effectively but in the open floor sometimes becomes a bit wild if he has to put it down more than that.
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REEBOK BREAKOUT CHALLENGE: FINAL RECAP

July 10, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

by Alex Schwartz

PHILADELPHIA – The Reebok Breakout Challenge came to a close yesterday, and NBE Basketball Report was on hand to take in the event’s final five game sets and catch up with a few more players.

One of the top uncommitted 2012 players at the camp was Daniel Dingle, a 6-foot-6 power forward out of St. Raymond’s (NY). He listed offers from Auburn, Temple, Xavier, Arizona, and Rutgers to go along with interest from Florida, Miami, Texas, and others.

Dingle said he does not have any favorites, but did note that a few schools are coming at him the hardest.

“I’d probably say Auburn, Temple and Arizona, those are the three,” Dingle said. “And Florida, Florida too, coach Norm [Roberts].”

At this point Dingle has visited Auburn, Temple and Rutgers. He does not have any visits scheduled, but may is thinking of working out a trip to Arizona.
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