Invisible Players

August 20, 2008

A lot of young players think that if they play well enough, recruiting offers will magically pour out from the top colleges. The reality is that college coaches aren’t picking up the local paper every day to see the box score. Getting recruited is as much about accessibility as it is about playing well, and AccessAthletes founder Matthew Allinson has an interview with Terry Threatt, a talented running back who rushed for 1,759 yards in his junior high school season and averaged 7.1 yards per carry and 6.3 yards per carry his senior season. I know we focus on basketball here, but Terry’s story is important for all high school athletes wanting a college scholarship.

Terry did not just wait for coaches to hear about him at his rural Oklahoma high school, he attended and played well at the NIKE camp and the Oklahoma State mini camp, but Terry still did not get much interest due to a lack of response when coaches inquired about him:

Threatt found himself in the unfortunate situation of having a first-year head coach who was unfamiliar with the recruitment process. After the camp, the University of Missouri expressed interest in recruiting Threatt. He received a phone call and a letter from the Tigers, but their interest waned quickly after several requests to his high school coach for more information went unanswered.

So, even though Terry played well enough to garner some DI interest, coaches quickly gave up when he was perceived as inaccessible. This should serve as an important lesson for athletes wanting to be recruited; if coaches can’t find you, you are invisible.

Athletes have to learn a little marketing, a little networking, and they can’t just sit back and wait for coaches to take notice, nor can they expect their coach to always have the best options for them.

Thanks to Matt for the story.

John Henson relocates; More on Kyrie Irving;

August 18, 2008

John Henson (SF, 6’10”, 2009), the Tar Heel commit who wowed coaches and scouts over the summer, will not be playing his high school ball in Texas this season. When the school semester starts next week, he’ll be at Sickles High School in Tampa, FL.

Kyrie Irving

So, we brought up ACC target Kryie Irving (PG, 6’2″, 2010) in a recent post, and how the entire Big East is well aware of him, but now several ACC schools have started getting interested as well. Alex has an outstanding interview with Irving, in which he outlines where his recruitment stands, which includes Wake Forest as one of the schools pursuing him the most at the moment. An interesting note, as we stated before he is a teammate of UNC commit Dexter Strickland, and if he were to commit to another ACC school, he’d find himself seeing Strickland on the court quite a bit after their high school careers are over.

Boston College: MIA?

Just what, exactly, is going on with Boston College basketball recruiting? It’s gotten very quiet in New England, and very little news of interested prospects. With only a few reported offers out:

Taran Buie, SG, 2010
Jason Morris, SG, 2010
Travis McKie, SF, 2010

for the next two classes, and with a lot of graduations, either Al Skinner has faith in the talent he’s already got or there are a lot of kids he’s looking at that are under the national radar.

With that in mind, maybe we can guess at a couple of players they might be looking at, like Toso Adebamowo (SG/SF, 6’5″, 2009), a solid scorer with a perfect stroke and a great defender, who plays his ball at Marianapolis Prep in Thompson, CT. Marionapolis Prep is a Class ‘B’ school, in comparison to Brewster Academy or Worcester Academy, which are Class ‘A’ schools. Adebamowo has seemed to be a guy with flashes of promise.

As always, if you’re a college basketball fan who can’t get enough of this stuff, sign up for the email list.

ACC Recruiting Roundup, Volume 2

August 17, 2008

Alex has an article on Wake Forest basketball commit Tony Chenault (PG/SG,6’1″,2010), where the scorer talks about his recent commitment to the Deacs:

“[It’s a] great school. They [are] known for producing great point guards like Chris Paul. They let their players play . . . [and are in] one of the best conferences in the country,” said Chenault as to why he picked Wake, an ACC power in the 21st century.

Thanks to Alex for the heads up on the future ACC player.

Derrick Favors cuts his list

Derrick Favors (PF, 6’10”, 2009) has cut his list to ten schools, and both Georgia Tech and NC State are still in the mix. Popular opinion seems to be that GT is still the leader, but Favors has not publicly said that.

Dexter Strickland Dunks Away Critics

The Adidas Nations camp takes current high school prospects and pairs them with an “NBA Mentor” during the camp. Not sure if Dexter Strickland, who played the camp after a somewhat light summer schedule was paired with former Carolina players Antwan Jamison or Raymond Felton (both of whom are repped by Adidas), but he was able to answer some of his critics with the camp highlight dunk. To be fair to Dexter, the critics are foolish in this case; Dexter is getting knocked because he chose to rest after an injury, did not play a heavy summer schedule and since he was MIA from the big time events, his stock supposedly slipped. That is laughable and hurts the credibility of a ranking system that pulls that stunt. It’s an old GM joke about a scout who’s favorite player is always the last player they saw.

Anyway, here’s a pretty good rundown of the Adidas event.

Kyrie Irving has ACC interest

You might have heard about Kyrie Irving (PG/SG, 6’2″, 2010), and you might have known that he plays for the same high school team as Dexter Strickland, and maybe you even knew that he had a whole bunch of interest from the Big East. But you probably didn’t know that he also has interest from Maryland, Virginia Tech and UNC.

Irving is officially on our ACC watch list.

Dominic Cheek’s List

Dominic Cheek is expected to announce a preliminary college list in September, and Wake Forest appears to be right in the mix.

John Wall says ‘Not So Fast’ on Baylor

August 15, 2008

Everybody thinks Wall is headed to Baylor, but he says no decision has been made, and Alex spoke with Wall to get the scoop, and he says he is still open:

There was thought that the Bears hired Clifton specifically to got Wall, but John says that he thinks Scott Drew and Co. hired him because “they . . . thought he was a good man.” Regardless of the reason why Baylor hired Clifton, does that give the program a major lead to land the talented point guard from Word of God (NC)? “No, no, they’re not the top choice,” said Wall of Baylor, also adding, “I’m still wide-open.”

Tristan Spurlock is a Cavalier

August 14, 2008

A big get for Virginia and the ACC, Tristan Spurlock (SF, 6’7″, 2009) has committed to the Virginia Cavaliers.

Assistant coach Bill Courtney led the Cavaliers’ pursuit of Spurlock, who also had scholarship offers from such schools as Georgetown, Wake Forest, Louisville, N.C. State and Florida State.

Spurlock is a pure SF, has the size to really be effective and can shoot from deep. He can and will play from the perimeter, can rebound and handle the ball. Should easily be a starter and star for Virginia.

As always, if you like this kind of info, sign up for the email list.

Jamil Wilson Update: Duke still in the mix

August 11, 2008

A lot of people have been saying that Jamil Wilson (SF,6’7″,2009) is leaning heavily toward Michigan State, but he has not completely eliminated other schools, including Duke:

HSH: What’s the latest on recruiting?
JW: I released my top seven last Monday. It’s Michigan State, Duke, Texas, Kentucky, Purdue, Marquette and Oregon.

Ryan Kelly Relaxes; Clemson gets Hill

August 10, 2008

Ryan Kelly (PF, 6’10”, 2009) has played a lot of ball recently, so he’s relaxing at the beach as he mulls over his eventual college destination.

As we discussed previsouly, Kelly recently trimmed his list:

Last week, Kelly trimmed his list of potential colleges to six.

The finalists are (in no particular order, he stressed): North Carolina, Duke, Wake Forest, Georgetown, Vanderbilt and Notre Dame.

“They are all great academic institutions, and I believe I would fit in well at any of them whether I was playing athletics or not,” Kelly said.

Kelly has really come on over the past few months into a player with a shot at a pro career. I am not sure which school Kelly would fit into the best.

Tobias Harris

Tobias Harris (PF,6’8″,2010) Has so many offers that it would be unfair to say that he’s primarily an ACC target, but with offers reported from Maryland, Virginia, Wake and Miami, it’s safe to say he’s on the ACC radar.

Clemson gets commit from Donte Hill

Donte Hill (SG, 6’5″, 2009) has committed to the Clemson Tigers. Hill is listed as a SG on several sites but at this point plays more like a SF. Several places list him at SG because his height is listed between 6’3″ and 6’5″, so the ‘formula’ would seem to dictate that if he’s 6’3″, he’ll play SG and if he’s 6’5″, he’ll play SF.

Right now, I’d say he’s a SF, but he still has another year to go to develop his guard skills. He can handle the ball very well, especially in transition.