Wildcat targets on display in Vegas

LAS VEGAS, Nev. - There are two big AAU tournaments this weekend. One in Las Vegas run by Hal Pastner's Vision Sports and one in Pastner's home town of Houston, run by adidas. By many accounts the Houston tournament has the stronger field but there were a number of players Arizona is considering in Vegas.<P> Cat Tracks was on hand to get a first hand look at some of the players the Cats are considering.

Jawann McClellan has already committed to Arizona and is impressing a ton of people. McClellan was off his game today, but his ability and athleticism are apparent. He a very smooth player who always plays under control. He doesn't force anything, and although he missed a few three-pointers, his form was good and his shot selection was top-notch.

Talking to people around the tournament, it's clear that McClellan is a good one. He dominated Friday's action, scoring over 30 points in one game.

"Arizona has got themselves another good one," said one recruiting analyst.

McClellan has been talking up the Wildcats. He sports a red Arizona cap at all time and has been saying positive things about the program to his Houston Hoops teammates. One teammate, injured guard Daniel Gibson, has been wearing a Texas jersey on the bench. Gibson committed to the Longhorns in March but that doesn't matter, McClellan makes sure the guys know who he is for.

"We're rivals now," McClellan said. "Arizona and Texas are battling for bragging rights in Houston."

One player who has been considering both teams is Houston point guard Nic Wise. Wise has been destroying the competition in the 15 & Under division and is so good that a special exhibition was set up to showcase him and a few other talented 15-year olds.

McClellan confirmed rumors that the sophomore-to-be was favoring the Wildcats and was considering a VERY early commitment. McClellan said that Texas convinced him to visit next week but that the Cats should be the favorite.

"He'd be coming in at a very good time for us," McClellan said. "We may need a new point guard by then."

The Arizona Magic had a very interesting game in the winners bracket on Saturday. The team erased a 10-point deficit in the second half and beat Los Angeles' Blueprint Ruffhouse team 73-70.

Point guard Darren Jordan led the way with 27 points. The six-footer from Trevor Browne high school is starting to garner some attention. He has already taken an unofficial visit to Arizona and is hearing a lot from Iowa State. Although he possesses a nice outside shot, most of his points came as a result of attacking the hoop. Only a sophomore, he will need to make steady improvement to be a Wildcat target.

As good as Jordan was in the win, wing forward Ty Morrison was the key. Morrison did everything the team needed to win. He was active on defense and keyed many a fast break with good rebounding and quick outlet passes. Morrison is attracting some national attention but the Wildcats are not in the market for a pure wing at this point. Grades are also an issue with Morrison, but that hasn't kept Oregon, ASU and BC from looking at him. Oregon coach Ernie Kent was in the stands to watch the 6-7 Phoenician.

A third player from that team is getting looks. Forward Lawrence Hill struggled offensively in the win, but showed flashes of talent. Unpolished at this point, Hill has skills at both forward spots. His coach David Grace compares him to versatile forwards like Luke Walton, at least in terms of playing both small or power forward spot. Some feel that if he continues to grow he could be an athletic power forward like a Tommy Smith or Matt Barnes. He visited Arizona with Jordan, but is not yet a prime target.

One player who has been all the rage is senior Mohamed Abukar. Abukar originally committed to Georgia but has re-opened his recruitment. The 6-10 center from Rancho Bernardo has consistently had the most college coaches watching his games.


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