Arkansas Prospects Abound At The Warmup

Several Arkansas prospects - including 2017 commits Daniel Gafford (6-11, 223) and Darious Hall (6-6, 210) and 2018 prospect Connor Vanover (7-3, 223) - will be on hand for The Warmup AAU Tournament in Bentonville.

Arkansas basketball fans will get the opportunity to see at least two future Razorbacks play in Northwest Arkansas this weekend. 

The Arkansas Wings’ Daniel Gafford (6-11, 217) and Memphis Magic’s Darious Hall (6-6, 210) are two 2017 Razorbacks commits that will meet Friday night at Bentonville High School at 8:30 p.m.

Their programs are part of the 42 squads of 17-and-under and 16-and-under teams on hand for the second annual AAU event entitled The Warmup, which has age divisions from 12-and-under on up. 

Also playing for the Wings’ 17 squad is 7-3, 223-pound Baptist Prep center Connor Vanover, who has an Arkansas offer and just led his high school team to a state championship.

“It was a dream come true,” noted Vanover, who played alongside his 6-10 older brother Brandon. “Our plan all along was to win it all and to do it with my brother before he graduated was a really good experience. 

“Now I am focusing on AAU ball after getting about a week of rest, but I was sick that week. It’s just a year-round deal for me at this point.”

Vanover will try to make a repeat appearance on the USA Men’s Junior National Team when he heads to Colorado Springs, Colo., on June 11.

He was part of the gold-medal winning squad that went 5-0 in the 2015 FIBA Americas Under 16 Championship in Bahia Blanca, Argentina.

“If I make the team I will go to Zaragoza, Spain,” Vanover said. “I’ve never been there. I got to go to Argentina last season with the team.”

Vanover, who also has offers from Ole Miss, Alabama and Vanderbilt, is focused on improving several parts of his game this spring and summer.

“My biggest thing is to improve the way that I move up and down the floor,” Vanover said. “I want to get faster and be able to play with more tempo that everybody plays.

“I also want to work on my perimeter defense and be more aggressive when I have the ball.”

Michael Porter, Jr., and Trae Young – two of the nation’s top 2017 prospects - will also play at 8:30 p.m. Friday night on Court 2 against the Mobile Warriors.

The other showcase game on Friday night begins at 7 and have the Arkansas Wings’ 16-and-under team playing Nick Mason Elite.

Connor Vanover

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