Thursday, June 30, 2011

Kahlil Dukes Keeping His Options Open

There is no doubt that Kahlil Dukes (Capital Prep Magnet, CT) is amongst the top athletes in the state of Connecticut.

As a freshman, Dukes lead all freshman nationally and the state of Connecticut in scoring averaging 29.1 points per game to go along with 3.3 assist, 2.7 steals and 2.6 rebounds.

This past season, his scoring took a huge dip when he only averaged 14.8 per game but that didn't necessarily mean it was a down year.

Most college scouts were worried about his ability to take the helm at the next level and he wasn't a stranger to the criticism.

"I'm looking to become more of a point guard and make others around me better," he said. "Everyone looks at me as a small two guard, so I'm just trying to become a point guard who can score whenever it's needed.

Granted, Dukes was a 6-foot scoring machine and could score from virtually anywhere. Everyone witnessed his ability to score in bunches but most still wanted to see his ability to get his teammates involved.

But did I mention Dukes averaged 6.5 assist this past season, which was tops in the state of Connecticut? Not to mention, finishing inside the top 20 in assist of all sophomore guards nationally with 168 assist on the season.

His play this past season at Capital Prep was just a glimpse of how much improvement he's made to become a NCAA ready point guard.

Dukes lead Capital Prep to a 21-5 (9-0) record as a sophomore and the team has continued to improve its record every year.

Many colleges are starting to take notice and it won't be long before many others do the same. "My top five as far as who's recruiting me is Penn, Providence, UMass, Towson and Northwestern," Dukes said.

"I'm pretty open at the moment, I haven't visited any of them so that may change but right now I'm open."

Dukes plans to visit all the schools interested but on the eve of the July live period, his focus has shifted towards getting better and playing up to his full potential.

"I plan on visiting all of them before the fall comes," he said. "But I am really focused on the live period. There's no telling what my considerations will be if I play up to my full potential."

In terms of upside, Dukes has a lot of it and his natural ability will take him along way.

Justin Seymour focused on July

Justin Seymour (Campbell, GA) a rising senior guard is trying to make his case as one of the top guards in the state of Georgia. Seymour, who holds over 10 scholarship offers, is looking forward to a big July and has opened his recruitment up.

"None as of right now," he said of the schools he's considering. "I'm going to get more serious with my recruitment after July."

Seymour  holds offers from Charlotte, East Carolina, Georgia Southern, Georgia State, Mississippi, Tennessee Tech, UTEP, VCU, Wichita State and Wofford. He also stated that, "[coaches] want to see me play the point."

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

High Majors Eyeing Darrell Bowie

Darrell Bowie (Wauwatosa East, WI) has four scholarship offers and has a chance to see that total grow by this time next month.

After his performance at Northwestern's elite camp, the Wildcats became the first high major school to offer the 6-foot-6 wing but certainly not the last.

"It was good," he said of the elite camp. "I was impressed with the campus and the coaching staff. It feels good getting the offer."

Northwestern joins Cal Poly, Green Bay and Northern Illinois as the only schools that offered Bowie. Iowa, Stanford, Tennessee and Wake Forest has also shown interest as of late and his recruitment is poised to take off.

Bowie has improved his skills tremendously this summer. He's always been known for good defense and his length but he's now making strides to becoming a very polished player.

He currently has interest in Cal Poly, Green Bay, Iowa, Northern Illinois, Northwestern, Stanford, Tennessee and Wake Forest. He does plan on visiting schools but will do so after the July live period.

"I was thinking about it," he said. "I'm just going to wait until after July and maybe schedule some visits in August."

As more schools continue to show interest, Bowie's recruitment is sure to slow down this summer. He said he's in no rush to make a commitment and will do everything possible to make sure he doesn't miss out on anything.

"I'll probably make a decision in the middle of August or maybe a little longer, I don't mind waiting," he said. "I just want to make sure I go visit the campus and make sure everything is right so I'm not missing out on anything. I just want to make sure I think everything through and not rush my decision."

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Dallas Anglin Picks up Big Ten Offer

Dallas Anglin, (Seton Hall Prep, NJ) a 6-foot-1 point guard is starting to establish himself as one of the top point guard prospects in his region.

This summer, Anglin has been impressive enough to land his first high major offer from Penn State. "Yes," he replied when asked if he'd received an offer from the Nittany Lions. "I was excited about the offer."

Penn State joins Rice, Richmond and St. Joseph's as the only teams to offer the Seton Hall Prep star but certainly not the last.

Notre Dame, Virginia and Florida State are just some of the names of schools starting to inquire about Anglin.

Before, Anglin was never considered a true point, more a quick deceptive combo-guard with the potential to become a point. Now, becoming more of a point guard is certainly drawing a lot of coaches.

"[Coaches] like that I play defense, I'm athletic, can score, pass and I work hard," he said. "I'm becoming a point guard. It's new to me but I've been doing a good job so far. So just becoming a point and keep working on my ball handle."

Anglin has already taken unofficial visits to St. Joseph's, Temple and Virginia and also added, "I'm visiting Richmond tomorrow [6/25/11]"

With so many new schools starting to show interest in Anglin he's going to sort through things before shorting his college list. "I'm definitely going to take my time," he said." This will be one of the most important decision I'll make in my life."

Friday, June 24, 2011

2012 NBA Draft: Top 50 Prospects

The 2011 NBA draft has come to its conclusion and as the lockout rumors loom over the league many aren't expecting much of a basketball season next year.

What some should expect is one of the deepest NBA drafts in recent memory.

Anthony Davis, Jared Sullinger and Harrison Barnes are just some of the big time names tied into the 2012 NBA draft. But as you saw last year don't expect them to just come out and declare.

On the other hand, if the majority of the talent that is expected to come out and declare for the draft actually does, some NBA teams could be looking at plenty of impact players bombarding the NBA.

Here is my early list of the top 50 2012 NBA draft prospects.

50. Rodney Williams 6'7'' Forward-Minnesota Gophers

My best bet is that you'll hear a lot from Rodney Williams this season after playing a limited role the first two years. He passes the NBA eye test with great physical talents and a very long frame. Williams is a  explosive wing that thrives in the open floor. He should have a breakout year with more offensive flexibility.

49. Durand Scott 6'3'' Guard-Miami Hurricanes

You can't call him a point guard but Durand Scott is a big time playmaker. He's at his best being aggressive towards the rim but he's also an unselfish player that will dish it off to a teammate to make a play. Scott needs to develop his shot and make better decision in terms of shooting.

48. Tu Holloway 6'0'' Guard-Xavier Musketeers

Tu Holloway was most likely the most dominant guard in the Atlantic-10 this past season. He averaged just under 20 points a game, along with five assist and five rebounds. Most are worried about his true leadership ability as a point guard but I point to leading Xavier in assist at 5.5 per game.

47. Maalik Wayns 6'0'' Guard-Villanova Wildcats

Wayns is extremely quick and has great handle, which allows him to break opposing defenses down off the dribble. With cleared space in the backcourt, Wayns could be poised for that breakout season that most are anticipating.

46. Reggie Johnson 6'10'' Center-Miami (FL) Hurricanes

Johnson flirted with the NBA draft this year but knew he needed to curb many flaws in his game. But one thing NBA GM's will love about Johnson is his ability to rebound the basketball. He was very close to averaging a double-double this past season.

45. Hollis Thompson 6'7'' Forward-Georgetown Hoyas

Hollis hasn't played his ideal role so far with the Hoyas. He's more of a wing with great potential at the three and you will see that with more flexibility on the offensive end. He's very long and is a capable finisher around the rim but settled for many jump shots. Hopefully, Thompson is utilized on the wing where he is more comfortable. It would definitely excel his stock.

44. Jordan Taylor 6''1'' Guard-Wisconsin Badgers

Remember the Jordan Taylor that took the game over and delivered then-No.1 Ohio State their first loss? Or the Taylor that blocked Jacob Pullen that led to a Sweet 16 berth? Yes, he's that good. Taylor is continuing to prove the doubters wrong and when his senior season concludes I could see him taken in the first round of the draft.

43. JaMychal Green 6'8'' Forward-Alabama Crimson Tide

Green has a solid offensive game that resides around the basket and utilizes his length to get his shots off over defenders. Offensively, his game still needs work. Defensively, Green is a solid defender who sent back 2.1 shots per game along with 1.4 steals per game.

42. Peyton Siva 5'11'' Guard-Louisville Cardinals

Nothing can triumph heart and that's what Peyton Siva is all about. The explosive guard plays with a lot of heart and he's not given enough praise for what he's done for Louisville. Siva led the Cardinals in assists at 5.2 and steals. His quick off the dribble and a nightmare for most of the slower guards.

41. Alex Oriahki 6'9'' Forward-Connecticut Huskies

Oriahki is a capable offensive threat but too inconsistent on that end of the floor. He's a big body, great rebounder and defender. He has all the physical tools to be a successful four in the NBA but his inconsistency offensively has really brought his stock down.

40. Will Barton 6'6'' Guard-Memphis Tigers

Barton has a lot of untapped potential. He's a long, lean two guard with the ability to run a team off-the-ball; think somewhere along the line of Marshon Brooks. His questionable shot selection brought down his shooting percentage but he has shown the ability to be a solid perimeter threat.

39. Ray McCallum 6'1'' Guard-Detroit Titans

Despite struggling most of the season, Ray McCallum almost averaged 10-5-5 during his freshman season at Detroit. McCallum has elite handle, good passing skills and is flying under the radar. He should be much better than his stats show if he declares for the 2012 draft.

38. Doron Lamb 6'4'' Guard-Kentucky Wildcats

Doron Lamb will probably be way lower on this list when the season concludes. In 28 minutes of action, Lamb managed to average 12 points per game. He shot 140 three-point attempts and nailed 48 percent of them. With more liberty in the offense expect to see the same Lamb that came out of Oak Hill Academy.

37. John Jenkins 6'4'' Guard-Vanderbilt Commodores

John Jenkins is one of the best shooting two guards in the country. He has unlimited range, it seems, and this past season he made it a priority to attack the basket more, which drew more fouls. His defense needs a lot of work, which is why he slips so far.

36. Tyshawn Taylor 6'3'' Guard-Kansas Jayhawks

Taylor going into his senior season hasn't fully grasped how to successfully run the point but has shown that he's capable. He was the leading assist man on arguably the best team in the nation as well as showing the his ability to beat his man off the dribble with his quick first step. More impressively was his lock down defense.

35. Leon Radosevic 6'10'' Forward-Croatia

With added build and work to his ball handling, Radosevic can be a really special player. He's shown he's a great asset in a pick-and-pop situation but not necessarily a great back to the basket scorer despite his height.

34. Festus Ezeli 6'11'' Center-Vanderbilt Commodores 

Ezeli has finally got it headed into his senior season. A great defensive presence has now shown a presence on the offensive end. He increased his shooting percentage dramatically to nearly 60 percent from the field and continue being a dominant force on the boards.

33. Terrence Ross 6'6'' Guard-Washington Huskies

Ross was one of the most deadly shooters from beyond the arc in the Pac-10 last season. This season, I expect him to have a more extended role that'll allow him to showcase his explosiveness and his ability to take over a game with his offense.

32. Augusto Cesar Lima 6'9'' Forward-Brazil

Augusto Cesar Lima is a long four man with the ability to play the five position. He's filled his body out well and overpowers defender in the post with his strength and athleticism. He's also valuable in the pick-and-roll with his ability to knock down the mid-range jumper.

31. Lucas Nogueira 6'11'' Center-Brazil

Many may not know of Lucas Nogueira but he has a chance to be a great player in the league. He has a great motor with excellent rebounding and shot-blocking skills. His offensive game is still developing but his FIBA U18 performance showcased a little of his offensive progress.

30. William Buford 6'5'' Guard-Ohio State Buckeyes

Buford is a terrific shooter, great defender and explosive leaper. He finished off his junior season shooting 44 percent from downtown. Buford could certainly be a great asset to any NBA team.

29. Andrew Nicholson 6'9'' Forward-St.Bonaventure

Nicholson will continue to jump up the draft board. He's a very long, athletic four that looks to make the highlight dunk every time he touches the ball. He's a good rebounder and due to his length, he's able to protect to the paint. His jump shot, that expands out to 15 feet, is still expanding and that's what sets him apart from most of the fours.

28. Tarik Black 6'8'' Forward-Memphis Tigers

Tarik Black has all the physical tools to be a special player in the future. He has outstanding athleticism, strength and length in the post. He's very in tune with the defensive end of the floor and was very limited offensively but almost averaged double-figured scoring.

27. Mouphtaou Yarou 6'10'' Center-Villanova Wildcats

Yarou has always been known for his great defense but now with a developing offensive game he has the chance to be a special player. His shooting percentage took a dip but he took nearly three-times the shot he took as a freshman.

26. Mason Plumlee 6'11'' Forward-Duke Blue Devils

Mason Plumlee is the ideal NBA four with added bulk. He's a walking highlight and dominant rebounder. With more of a prominent role with Duke he was more productive in every statistical area. His inability to knock down the free-throw could be a problem.

25. Jeffery Taylor 6'7'' Forward-Vanderbilt Commodores 

Jeffery Taylor is a deadly penetrator with excellent size and the ability to finish in the lane. His offensive game picked up with the addition of his jump shot but his offensive game is still a work in progress. A very capable defender because of his size and athleticism.

24. Joshua Smith 6'9'' Center-UCLA Bruins

As he continues to tone his body, Joshua Smith has a really bright future. Smith is a great passer and big time shot blocker from the post. He has great hands and with more urgency to use his body in the post expect a lot of three-point plays.

23. Kris Joseph 6'7'' Forward-Syracuse Orange

Kris Josephs is a great all-around threat and can impact the game on both ends of the floor. He has improving range on his jump shot and the ability to attack the defense off the dribble. Josephs, undoubtedly, the most improved player in the college game.

22. Khris Middleton 6'7'' Forward-Texas A&M Aggies

Khris Middleton the long 6-foot-7 forward has one of the most consistent games in the country. Year-by-year, Middleton continues to expand his game and get better as an all-around player. He has an high basketball IQ, really understands the game and can create for himself.

21. LeBryan Nash 6'7'' Forward-Oklahama State Cowboys

Nash with his size and athleticism is one of the toughest players to guard. He's a great slasher and one of the best finishers in the game. His outside skills have certainly developed nicely and staying consistent with his game will only help his draft stock.

20. Tyler Zeller 7'0'' Forward-North Carolina Tarheels

When Tyler Zeller is healthy he's one of the most dominant low post scorers in the college game. He exploded in the NCAA tournament putting up 55 points in the first two games and finished the tourney averaging around 25 points and eight boards per game. Adding weight would be ideal for the tall four man.

19. CJ Leslie 6'9'' Forward-NC State Wolfpack

You could make a case that Leslie is the most athletic and explosive leaper in the game today. His game really translate towards the wing more than anything but Leslie is starting to develop a face-up game and the ability to score in the post. He didn't have a great year for NC State but similar to Terrence Jones expect him to blossom with another year.

18. Thomas Robinson 6'9'' Forward-Kansas Jayhawks

Playing behind the Morris twins, Robinson didn't get much of the praise. But now being the focal point of the Jayhawks attack next year, I expect a big leap in his overall game. He's an ultimate vacuum on the boards and highlight reel in transition.

17. Kendall Marshall 6'3'' Guard-North Carolina Tarheels

Marshall doesn't get enough credit for what he has done thus far in the college game. Tied Raymond Felton's assist record, lead the 'Heels to an Elite Eight berth after being written off early in the season, not to mention, utilizing every player on the court getting them the ball in position to score. His leadership and pure point ability is a must-have if you have a need at the point guard position.

16. Terrence Jones 6'8'' Forward-Kentucky Wildcats

Terrence Jones shows many similarities of a Lamar Odom type of forward. He has great handle for his size and uses it to be aggressive off the dribble. He's more of a wing than four but out of need showed his versatility when Cal played him inside. Jones clearly is a physically ready for the NBA and with an extra year with Cal he can only continue to improve.

15. Adonis Thomas 6'6'' Forward-Memphis Tigers

Adonis Thomas is one of the most athletic forwards this game has to offer. He was a 20-10 guy in high school and also made the McDonald's All American game. He has one of the best work ethics and continue to make progress towards the wing. As a wing, he's too quick, athletic for most three's and a very good rebounder.

14. Patric Young 6'9'' Center-Florida Gators

Young really reminds me of a young Dwight Howard in terms of rebounding and defense. He has the ability to impact a game defensively with his big body locking down on defenders and boxing out grabbing boards. His offensive game is still a work in progress but not many can pass on this athletic big with a developing skill set.

13. Myck Kabongo 6'2'' Guard-Texas Longhorns

I've said it once, and I'm going to say it again: when it's all said and done, Myck Kabongo will be the best pure point guard out of the 2011 class. He has great point guard instincts and utilizes them to full ability. If the game is on the line and I had to chose between any point guard in this class I'd pick Kabongo.

12. John Henson 6'11 Forward-North Carolina Tarheels

Henson is, no doubt, the best shot blocker in College Basketball. He has excellent length with a staggering 7'6'' winspan, solid timing and alters a lot of shots. Henson capped off his sophomore season with 3.2 blocks per game, which ranked eighth in the nation. Offensively, Henson is still a work in progress as well as his frame; only 210 pounds.

11. Marquis Teague 6'2'' Guard-Kentucky Wildcats

Teague is one of the best incoming freshman point guards in the nation. He has a knack for scoring but is better when getting his teammates involved. The fearless scorer can be compared with Knight when it comes to clutch time. He's not scared to make the big play and always puts his team in position to win.

10. Brad Beal 6'4'' Guard-Florida Gators

Coming out of high school, Beal can challenge Lamb as one of the best off-ball shooters in College Basketball. Beal, a college freshman, already has NBA range on his shot with the ability to take over a game similar to what Lamb did at UConn.

9. Austin Rivers 6'4'' Guard-Duke Blue Devils

Rivers was rated the No.1 prospect in the 2011 class for most of his senior year and deserved every bit of his praise. Rivers has the ability to light up a defense on any given night. He has tremendous confidence, good handle and can possibly play the point.

8. Michael Gilchrist 6'7'' Forward-Kentucky Wildcats

Most people sleep on Gilchrist's ability to play on the wing but one year under coach Cal will help curb most of that distinction. Gilchrist is a great offensive player doing virtually everything right down to moving without the ball, setting a screen or boxing, the simple things as well as utilizing his athleticism on the defensive end. Gilchrist is possibly the best all-around player and with help expanding his jumper, he really has a chance to be great.

7. Jeremy Lamb 6'6'' Guard-Connecticut Huskies

If the 2010-11 season was any indication, Lamb is a deadly shooter. Lamb was one of the main reasons UConn won the National Championship with his pure shooting ability coming off screens. This summer he is also making a case as one of the best shooting guards in the country at the U-19 trials.

6. James McAdoo 6'8'' Forward-North Carolina Tarheels

McAdoo will probably make a big splash this year at UNC and get in that top three category of the 2012 NBA draft. McAdoo has a NBA ready body at 6'8'' 230 and the versatility to play on the wing and at the four. McAdoo has the ability to run the floor, start the break, finish in the lane and knock down shots.

5. Quincy Miller 6'9'' Forward-Baylor Bears

Quincy Miller is one of those superstars with explosive offense but his defense is better. He's always blocking shots, getting after the driver and being aggressive on that end of the floor. But his offense is built from the Kevin Durant mold. Miller has great handle, a great feel for the mid range game and a shot that ranges out to the three point line. Not to mention, Miller is one of the most explosive finishers in the game.

4. Jared Sullinger 6'9'' Forward-Ohio State Buckeyes

If Sullinger declares for the 2011 NBA draft he could have easily been the No. 1 pick in the draft but decided to return. Sullinger is a walking double-double with the ability to control the game on the offensive end. He has a big body that hard to contain inside and always seems to utilize his strength by overpowering the defender for a score.

3. Perry Jones 6'11'' Forward-Baylor Bears

Jones, who could have easily went in the top five of this years draft, has a chance to go top-5 in the next draft as well. At 6'11'' most want to see him play in the post but his game is more suitable on the wing showing his versatility. The long forward has a great feel for rebounding, blocking shots and facing up. Jones has tremendous upside and can impact a team right away.

2. Harrison Barnes 6'7'' Forward-North Carolina Tarheels

Barnes one of the most highly rated recruits in history was the first ever freshman to be named an AP Preseason All American in NCAA history and lived up to that distinction when it mattered. Over his first year at UNC Barnes hit many cluth shots and helped the Tarheels reach the Elite Eight. He has the ability to attack the rim or stretch the defense with his jumper.

1. Anthony Davis 6'10'' Forward - Kentucky Wildcats

It wouldn't be a stretch to say Davis can play every position on the floor. Davis has the ability to create shots for himself and teammates along with the ability to attack off the dribble and finish above the rim. Defensively, Davis' long arms and length allows him to alter and block a lot of shots. His upside and talent level has NBA lottery pick written all over him.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Kale Abrahamson Adds ACC and Big East Offers

Headed into his senior year, 2012 Valley High School (Iowa) standout Kale Abrahamson is starting to see a lot more offers headed his way.

This summer, Abrahamson continues to draw in more college interest and is now amongst the most heavily recruited players in the state of Iowa.

Today, Abrahamson received offers from both Boston College and Seton Hall, giving him 11 offers for hoops.

Listed at 6-foot-7, Abrahamson is a long athletic wing with the ability to fill it up from anywhere on the court. He's virtually unstoppable in transition finishing or dishing it off to a teammate.

For most of his high school career Abrahamson has flew under the radar. But the summer he's having thus far will only attract more college coaches to make a run at the long scoring wing.

Jared Terrell Getting High-Major Interest

6-foot-3 point guard Jared Terrell (New Hampton School, MA) is coming off a season where he turned around a high school program in Weymouth and led the Bay State conference in scoring with around 15 points per game.

After the season, Terrell decided to transfer to the New Hampton School where he will be teamed up with the likes of Zach Auguste and reclassify to the class of 2014.

That was after the June 15th mark where college coaches could contact rising sophomores.

Terrell received calls from Alabama, Boston College, Cincinnati, DePaul, Florida State, Georgia Tech, Miami, Providence, Rutgers, Seton Hall, Temple, Texas, UConn, UMass, URI, Wake Forest and Washington.

Outside of all the calls came four programs who extended their interest. Boston College, Penn State, Providence and Temple are four schools that are sticking out to Terrell right now.

Boston College hosted Terrell for a visit not too long ago and Providence could be the next visit for the talented guard. "Yes, actually Providence," he said when asked if he has any planned visits in mind. "I'm trying to get up there before the live period starts."

Terrell's recruitment will continue to pick up as his game improves. There is no doubt Terrell is one of the most physical guards in his class and state. He's at his best when being aggressive towards the rim.

Terrell is a strong, explosive guard and with a mixture of both his finishes around the rim are sure to entertain. He attacks the defense relentlessly and with work his jump shot, many other schools will inquire.

On defense, Terrell has the ability to play the role of a lockdown defender with his strength and quick feet. His defensive repertoire is developing but I'd be nitpicking if I told you he needed to improve anything on that end of the floor.

This summer, Terrell is focusing on, "just getting better as an all around player and being prepared for school next year."

Thus far, Terrell holds one D-1 offer from UMass but many college programs across the nation have taken notice. With the July live period and three more years of basketball left before college expect to hear a lot about the dominate lead guard.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Arena Pulse and Collegiate Hoops 2011 Mock Draft

The 2011 NBA draft has been called one of the weakest in recent memory. Players like Jared Sullinger, Harrison Barnes, Perry Jones and more decided to forgo the NBA draft and return to college.

That not only made the, already weak, NBA draft worse but despite the depth in the class, the 2011 class does have game changing players.

Cleveland at No. 1 is sold on selecting Duke star Kyrie Irving but the other picks can be disputed. @TheArenaPulse and myself assembled our view on how the 2011 NBA draft will unfold. Here it goes:

1. The Cleveland Cavaliers select Kyrie Irving from Duke University (AP)

This is a no brainer. In Irving's time at Duke, he lead the Blue Devils in scoring and assist before injury. He's a great lead guard and will be able to make a big impact in Cleveland immediately.

2. The Minnesota Timberwolves select Derrick Williams from the University of Arizona (CH)

If you're the T'Wolves, Derrick Williams is just too good of a player to pass on. He's one of those special players that can impact the game inside or out. Most are focused on the drawback that Williams has no definite position but one should point out that he's one heck of a basketball player.

3. The Utah Jazz select Brandon Knight from the University of Kentucky (AP)

The Utah Jazz traded away their star point guard in Deron Williams mid-season and will also lose Andrei Kirilenko to free agency, so the third pick could go anyway. But I believe the Jazz go after one of the best point guards in the draft.

4. The Cleveland Cavaliers select Enes Kanter from Turkey (CH)

Enes Kanter said it himself, if he and Irving are taken by the Cavaliers, Cleveland will make the playoffs; I buy it. Alongside JJ Hickson insert Kanter along with Irving and you have one of the better younger teams in the NBA.

5. The Toronto Raptors select Jonas Valanciunas from Lithuania (AP)

The Raptors could use some help in the paint and Jonas Valanciunas is probably the best you can get if you're Toronto.

6.  Washington Wizards--6-11 PF Jan Veseley from Czech Republic (CH)

7. Sacramento Kings--6-7 SF Kawhi Leonard from San Diego State University (AP)

8. Detroit Pistons--6-9 PF Bismack Biyombo from Congo (CH)

9. Charlotte Bobcats--6-1 PG Kemba Walker from the University of Connecticut (AP)

10. Milwaukee Bucks--6-7 SG Klay Thompson from Washington State University (CH)

11. Golden State--6-6 SG Alec Burks from the University of Colorado (AP)

12. Utah Jazz--6-9 SF Chris Singleton from Florida State University (CH)

13. Phoenix Suns--6-9 PF Marcus Morris from the University of Kansas (AP)

14. Houston Rockets--6-9 PF Tristian Thompson from the University of Texas (CH)

15. Indiana Pacers--6-9 C Markieff Morris from the University of Kansas (AP)

16. Philadelphia 76ers--6-9 SF Jordan Hamilton from the Univeristy of Texas (CH)

17. New York Knicks--6-3 PG Jimmer Fredette from Brigham Young Univerisy (AP)

18. Washington Wizards--7-0 C Nikola Vucevic from USC (CH)

19. Charlotte Bobcats--6-6 PG/SG Iman Shumpert from Georgia Tech University (AP)

20. Minnesota Timberwolves--6-5 SG Marshon Brooks from Providence College (CH)

21. Portland Trailblazers--6-3 PG Reggie Jackson from Boston College (AP)

22. Denver Nuggets--7-0 PF Donatas Motiejunas from Lithuania (CH)

23. Houston Rockets--6-3 PG Josh Selby from the University of Kansas (AP)

24. Oklahoma City Thunder--6-8 PF Kenneth Faired from Morehead State (CH)

25. Boston Celtics--6-8 SF Tobias Harris from the University of Tennessee (AP)

26. Dallas Mavericks--6-10 SF Nikola Mirotic from Serbia (CH)

27. New Jersey--6-8 Kyle Singler from Duke University (AP)

28. Chicago Bulls--6-7 SF Tyler Honeycutt from UCLA (CH)

29. San Antonio Spurs--6-10 SF Davis Bertans from Latvia (AP)

30. Chicago Bulls--6-9 PF Justin Harper from the University of Richmond (CH)

Illinois Lands 2013 PG Jalen James

Jalen James, a 2013 point guard from Chicago Hope Adacemy in Illinois, gave a verbal commitment to the Fighting Illini and head coach Bruce Weber.

James, considered one of the top upcoming guards in the class of 2013 has heard from many schools across the country and received offers from  Baylor and Cleveland State on top of the Illinois offer.

"Other colleges can offer me," James told HeardthisBlog. "But right now, I'm committed to the University of Illinois."

"The plan was, the scholarship was there and he told me to call him when I was ready to make a decision. I made the choice to commit to Illinois."

James gives Weber his first commitment in 2013 and a chance to build around the talented lead guard.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Kareem Canty Likes Four

Kareem Canty, a 6-foot-1 point guard from Bridgton Academy has seen a boost in his recruitment as of late.

The Brooklyn point guard is a great creator on the floor and has the ability to take over the game with his ability to attack the defense and find his teammates for the score.

He also has a second gear that allows him to grind it out and keep his team in position to win. His toughness and physicality is a joy to watch especially to many colleges coaches.

Canty has heard from plenty coaches across the county and received offers from Florida State, Miami (FL), Oklahoma, Tennessee and Xavier.

Xavier seemed to emerge as his leader early May and the Musketeers continue to recruit Canty hard. But along with Xavier is Florida State, Miami (FL) and Seton Hall as the three other schools to make his list.

Canty confirmed the news that he's down to four and said he has no timeline on when he will make his final decision.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Keion Bell Transfers to Mizzou

Coming out of High School, Keion Bell held offers from Miami (FL), Nevada, Pepperdine, San Diego State, San Francisco, Santa Clara and UNLV.

He ultimately chose Pepperdine and didn't waste time making an impact for the Waves.

After spending three years at Pepperdine, the California native decided to transfer to Missouri to finish out his final year of eligibility.

Bell, mostly known for his vicious and eye-popping dunks, will also be an instant scoring threat out of the backcourt for the Tigers.

In the past two seasons, Bell has averaged 18 points per game on around 42 percent shooting from the field.

Bell visited Missouri this past weekend and enjoyed his visit enough to cancel on the scheduled visit to Texas A&M and give a verbal commitment to the Tigers.

Bell, along with Earnest Ross and George Goode are the recent transfers that have all committed to Missouri. Unfortunately, Bell will have to sit out a year due to NCAA transfer rules but will be able to play with the 2012 recruiting class that could shape up to be a top 10 class if everything goes as planned for Frank Haith and company.

Rodney Purvis Down to Three

Rodney Purvis, a 2012 standout at Upper Room Christian Academy has been a high major hoops prospect since middle school. Purvis stands at 6'4'' with the ability to play both positions in the backcourt.

His ability to run in transition, make plays, slash and ultimately, live in the paint has many modeling his game after NBA star Dwyane Wade.

For the most part of his junior year, Purvis gave his verbal pledge to Louisville but after the departure of Tim Fuller he opted to re-open his recruitment and explore his options.

He had kept Kentucky and Louisville amongst his top but when it came to narrowing it down to three, neither school made the list.

Purvis recently trimmed his list to Duke, Missouri and North Carolina State. Louisville's addition of Kevin Ware and Kentucky addition of Ryan Harrow was the reason named for both programs not making his top three.

Assistant Tim Fuller, who did a stellar job in luring Purvis to Louisville is now stationed at Mizzou and it's no surprise that the Tigers made his final three.

Neither is Duke or NC State. Duke has always been considered the favorite but coach Mark Gottfried has made Purvis a priority and with Tyler Lewis and Torian Graham, the Wolfpack are just as appealing as the other two programs.

With the whole summer and senior year ahead, Purvis is expected to take his time on making a decision.

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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Brannen Greene Getting Major Interest

At 6-7, 180 pounds Brannen Greene of Mary Persons HS in Monroe, Georgia has the size and athleticism to excel on the wing at the college level. The offensive threat has the ability to knock down jumpers, attack the rim and finish strong.

His game has become a coaches favorite and it showed as soon as coaches were allowed to contact recruits graduating in 2013.

Greene received an outstanding 10 phone calls from colleges nationwide.

Alabama, Florida, Georgia Tech, Memphis, Ohio State, Stanford, Tennessee, Virginia Tech, Wake Forest and Xavier were the programs that gave the five-star wing a shout after midnight but I expect even more to inquire by today.

Going into his junior year of high school, Greene already has offers from Alabama, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Georgia Southern, Georgia Tech, Marquette, Mercer, NC State, Oklahoma, Providence, South Carolina, Virginia and Wake Forest.

Greene, who told me earlier this summer, "I will most likely make my decision before my junior year," will likely have a much harder time deciding as he continue to rack up offers and interest from college programs across the nation.

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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

DeAndre Daniels Commits to UConn

DeAndre Daniels of IMG Academy finally made his college decision and will join the Connecticut Huskies 2011 recruiting class. Daniels picked UConn over Kansas, Oklahoma State, San Diego State, Texas and many more.

The 6-foot-7 forward was once a Texas Longhorn and thought to join either Duke or Kansas. But after postponing his college decision, Daniels recruitment opened up even more.

He added San Diego State, Oklahoma State and UConn to his list of possible suitors.

Daniels adds a great wing threat to help the Huskies lost of Kemba Walker, who is conceived to be an NBA lottery pick.

Daniels has great size for a college wing and his game should translate well at Connecticut. His athletic and slashing ability puts a ton of pressure on opposing defenses and his developing three-point shot only makes him that much tougher to guard.

"He is an extremely talented young man," Andy Borman Director of IMG Basketball Academy said in a statement released by the school. "But what sets him apart from other talented kids his age is the fact that he is extremely driven and focused on becoming the best player possible. He is an immediate impact player at the next level."

Daniels joins Ryan Boatright in the Huskies 2011 class. Daniels commitment certainly puts UConn amongst the top in the Big East after returning Jeremy Lamb, Alex Oriahki, Shabazz Napier and many other National Champ standouts.

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Monday, June 6, 2011

Jodan Price Picks Up Three Offers

Jodan Price is one of the top upcoming prospect in the class of 2012. The Detroit County Day prospect picked up three offers in just five days but don't expect it to stop there.

Eastern Michigan was the first to offer the 6-foot-7 forward but it didn't take Central Michigan and Lamar to jump on the recruiting trail and offer as well.

"I feel good about all the offers," he said. "They all stand great in my recruitment."

Price is still hearing from Boston college, Colorado, Iowa, Iowa State, Jacksonville, Maryland, Minnesota, Northwestern, Oakland, Providence, Rutgers, South Florida, St. Joseph's, and Temple.

"I'm planning on going to all the schools that offered me in June and Northwestern," he said. But did add, "I'm wide open."

Price is considered to be one of the more deadly shooters in the class of 2012. He can spot up, come off a screen, or create an open look from downtown.

He continues to showcase his ability to shoot the basketball but some want to see him work his way inside more often. His offensive game is still developing and as he continue to get stronger and attack the rim, expect to see more offers coming Price's way.

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Jordan Loveridge Gets Utah State Offer

Jordan Loveridge, a 2012 prospect out of West Jordan High School (UT), has done his fair share of impressing college scouts on the court.

He is also, widely considered, the best basketball player in the state of Utah.

Utah already offered and sits well with Loveridge and after visiting Utah State, the Aggies hold a special place in his recruiting trail as well.

After taking an unofficial visit to Utah State today, Loveridge picked up his fifth scholarship offer from the Aggies.

"I like them a lot," Loveridge said of Utah State. Marcel Davis, a teammate of Loveridge, already gave his verbal commitment to Utah State and that could impact his decision.

"Maybe," Loveridge said. "But I have to do what is best for me."

He now holds offers from BYU, Colorado State, Utah, Utah State and Weber State.

Loveridge has great size standing at 6-foot-6 and 225 lbs. His physical frame allows him to finish strong at the rim through contact more often than not.

Not to mention, his game is starting to expand out to the wing as Loveridge continues to work on his ball-handling and stay consistent with his fluid mid-range stroke that expands out to the three-point line.

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Nick Madray Recruitment Picking Up

Nick Madray, a 6-foot-8 forward from Stephen Lewis School (Ont.), had a breakthrough performance at the Best Buy Classic by many accounts.

He has a great mid-range game with the ability to stretch out and hit the three-point shot.

He is very strong as his body continues to develop and exhibits potential to be one of the best inside-out threats in his class.

Madray, a 2013 prospect, hasn't picked up any offers, yet, but expect more to come as he continues to showcase his dominant ability on the court.

"Syracuse and Rice are really interested [in me]," he said. "Syracuse came to my school three times and I went on two unofficials. Rice visited me three separate times as well."

He added, "[Rice and Syracuse] are both on the verge of offering me." Many other coaches have showed interest as well. "I'm also hearing from Boston College, Santa Clara and Virginia," he said.

Coaches Tony Bennett (UV), Akbar Waheed (BC) and Dustin Kerns (SC) all came to watch him workout at his high school last month and have been interested after watching Madray do drills.

Despite the recent spike in his recruitment, Madray is staying focused on what got the coaches interested in the place. "I'm just focusing on getting better and AAU," he said. But did say, "I'm considering visiting them later."

The 6-8 four man from Canada is playing his AAU ball with CIA Bounce. This summer he's done a great job of showcasing his fluid jump shot and ability to consistently light teams up from the outside.

With improvement to his ball-handling, Madray will certainly be one of the best when it's all said and done.

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Saturday, June 4, 2011

Martin Breunig Commits to Washington

Martin Breunig, a 6-foot-9 forward, who originally committed to play for Gary Williams and the Maryland Terrapins was granted a release after the coaching change that led Mark Turgeon to College Park.

Since being released, Breunig had two schools in mind: South Florida and Washington.

Breunig finished up his visit to South Florida earlier this week and it didn't take him long to announce his intentions to sign with the Washington Huskies.

Breunig gave Lorenzo Romar his fifth commitment in the 2011 class and the big the Huskies desperately needed.

Breunig joins a class that features Tony Wroten Jr, Hikeem Stewart, Jernard Jarreau and Andrew Andrews that is certainly going to help continue success at Washington.

Breunig is a face-up mid-range four man that can attack the defense with his solid jump shot. He has to develop more post moves and utilize his physical talents but his overall game is solid and this is a great pickup for the Huskies.

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Thursday, June 2, 2011

Fab Melo and His 'Volatile Relationship'

Fabricio Melo, the 7-foot Brazilian "cant-miss" prospect coming out of high school, chose Syracuse University for his academic and basketball career.

Melo, a former Mickey D's All-American, was under the radar for most of his freshman season after starting 24 games and averaging just 2.3 points and 1.9 rebounds per game.

His under the radar off-the-court issues are starting to surface, however, after his girlfriend, a student at SUNY Upstate, told authorities about their "volatile relationship."

Melo, was in court Wednesday June 1st 2011 on charges of criminal mischief after being accused of taking off the turn signal in his girlfriends car.

The girlfriend reported four or five different physical altercations with Melo since they began dating.

The latest altercation occurred after Melo became jealous of a phone call from another male to his girlfriend as well as comments on Facebook. Melo is set to return back to court June 14th.

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