Arkansas in the Mix for Santos

Boston area combo guard Colby Santos is among the many players that Arkansas coaches get a look at during play Thursday at the Nike All-American Camp in Indianapolis.

INDIANAPOLIS - As the nephew of Boston Celtics Director of Player Personnel and longtime area coaching legend Leo Papile, Colby Santos knows the game of basketball inside and out.

The 6-5, 180-pound guard from Tabor Academy in Wareham, Mass., is just trying to make sure he uses that knowledge wisely on the court in conjunction with his God-given athleticism and skills.

"I am just trying to put it all together to be the best basketball player I can be," Santos said. "There are still some things I can get better at, but I am excited about the path I headed down."

Santos, who averaged 18 points last season for the school just outside of Boston, is on hand this week for the Nike All-American Camp and has shown flashes of why many consider him one of the nation's best combo guards.

"I've played pretty well and the competition is certainly going to help me get better," Santos said. "The best thing about this camp is you learn a lot even when you are not on the court here. There's classroom stuff and things to get you ready for college and the real world."

Santos has been playing on the wing here, but runs the point for the Papile-coached Boston Amateur Basketball Club - better known as BABC.

"I think my biggest strengths right now are that I can shoot the ball and I can see the floor really well," Santos said. "I do have to get stronger.

"I play the point guard during the summer and both the one and the two during the high school season," Santos said. "I can even slide down to the three if needed like I am doing here."

Santos has a top five right now of Arkansas, Miami, Florida, Louisville, American and Drexel.

He's kept up with the Razorback program in the past.

"I know they have had a great basketball program over the years and I really like the coaches they have their now," Santos said. "I haven't taken a visit yet, but I am definitely coming down to check it out."

Arkansas assistant Ronny Thompson has been heading up the recruiting effort on Santos, who was reclassified as a junior when he made the move to Tabor before last season.

"He has told me that are looking for a lengthy guard, someone who can really shoot the ball and they feel like I am that type of guy," Santos said. "It is something I am definitely interested in."

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One of the buzzes around the Nike Camp this week has been about some reforms the National Association of Basketball Coaches now have on the table after their meeting earlier this week in Indianapolis.

The key reform that some 195 college head coaches agreed to push for is giving college players a fifth year of eligibility.

They are doing so because of studies that show it takes an average college student 4.8 years to graduate.

The coaches also offered up proposals that would eliminate official visits for juniors and create more access to players during the season and after - such as having a player over to the coaches house for dinner.

Next up will be sending the proposals to the NCAA's Management Council, which meets July 19 in Baltimore.

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Thursday Nike Tidbits:

...Mississippi prep junior standout Andre Stephens, one of the 2006 prospects Arkansas is involved with, had to leave camp because of an illness.

...Miami Tropics center Jason Bennett, a 7-1, 230-pound junior from Jacksonville (Fla.) Arlington County Day, said Thursday he has an early top five of Arkansas, Florida, Florida State, Duke and North Carolina.

...Rousean Cromwell, a prep standout from Memphis Fairley that has grown into 6-10, 202-pound power forward, is very interested in Arkansas, Florida State, Stanford, UConn, Tennessee, Georgetown and Memphis.

He is not playing at Nike this week because of a foot injury, but should be ready to play the Memphis Bulldogs AAU team in Las Vegasin July.

... Arkansas is not involved with 6-10, 200-pound Magnum Rolle and apparently has no plans to be according to the player, who recently decommitted from Florida State.

He is looking at LSU, North Carolina State and still Florida State, but says his recruiting is in a state of flux right now.

He had thought about playing the rest of the AAU season with the Arkansas Wings, but says now he thinks he will just take the rest of the summer off.

...Arkansas is in the mix for 2006 guard prospect Ramar Smith of Michigan. He's a 6-2, 180-pound Corey Beck-type with a shot.


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