Ironically the two guys that Memphis Mitchell junior forward Thad Young might have to go through to win the state title were sitting right next to him Friday night at the University of Arkansas' Midnight Madness.
Of course, the 6-8, 200-pound Young is very familiar with defending state champ Bolivar (Tenn.) High's junior duo of 6-1,180-pound point guard Willie Kemp and 6-8, 230-pound Wayne Chism having played with them as part of a high-power Memphis YOMCA AAU squad.
"We were 26-5 last season at Mitchell and have all five starters coming back so we feel like we might have a chance to take state this season," Young said. "I'd say we are going to have to go through Bolivar and these guys to do it."
That trio joined UA-Fort Smith freshman and former West Memphis star Sonny Weems (6-6, 200) and 2007 prospect Michael Sanchez (6-8, 200) of Springdale - who already has a scholarship offer from the Razorbacks - as recruits on hand at Bud Walton Arena.
"This is the best school I have had a chance to see so far," noted Young, who has also taken unofficial visits to Memphis and Tennessee. "They have a lot of great stuff happening here."
Young, ranked as the No. 1 small forward in the country and the sixth-best prospect nationally regardless of position by Scout.com (formerly the Insiders), averaged 22 points and 12 rebounds as a sophomore last season.
He also put up a 4.3 grade point average on a 4.0 scale by taking honors classes and spent five weeks this summer in a prep school in Connecticut to further his education.
"He does all the things that normal kids just don't do," Memphis (Tenn.) Mitchell coach Jerry Johnson told Scout.com. "He never gets in trouble and doesn't wear tattoos. He's strictly about the business of being the best.
"He's got the total all-around game," Johnson added. "We can play him at point guard or center or anywhere in-between. The only weakness I see in him is that he needs to block more shots and get more triple-doubles."
Young , son of former NBA playeer Felton Young, was impressed with the players Arkansas had on the court during its scrimmage, the fans and Bud Walton Arena.
"It's been great so far," Young said. "I love the game and the facility and they've got some great players here. It seems to be a great situation I am very interested in."
Arkansas joins North Carolina, Michigan, Georgia Tech, Memphis, Tennessee, Kansas, UConn, Mississippi State, Oklahoma, Indiana, Florida, Stanford and Georgetown as just a few of the teams recruiting Young.
"Just about everybody in the country is recruiting me and I am going to see a lot of schools," Young said. "It's hard to say who is in the lead because it is so early, but I am very impressed with what I have found here."
Young and Talented
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