Mobile's McKinney Has Plenty of Options

One of the state's top basketball prospects discusses recruiting and her interest in Nell Fortner's Tigers.

Mobile, Ala.--A lot of eyes are watching Shanece McKinney in the month of July as college coaches are allowed on the road to scout AAU basketball tournaments.

One of the players they are checking out is six-foot-four post player Shanece McKinney from LeFlore High School, one of the top girls prospects in the Southeast for the 2010 signee class.

McKinney runs the court well and there is a lot more to like about the game of the rising senior. Last year she earned All-State honors with a big season as she averaged 20 points, 12 rebounds, seven blocks and five assists per game. However, she isn't resting on her laurels.

"I am working at improving my outside game and I am shooting a lot of jumpers," says McKinney, who was named player of the year as a junior for the southwest region of Alabama.

An all-camp team selection in Coach Nell Fortner's two-day individual camp in June at Auburn, McKinney says the Tigers are one of the college programs she is seriously considering.

"I like Auburn, Florida, Duke, Rutgers, Clemson, Florida State and some more," says McKinney, who notes that all of those colleges and around 30 more have offered scholarships.

"I really don't have a favorite now," she says. "I am trying to keep an open mind about it."

Although most top girls and boys basketball high school prospects sign scholarships in the early period in November, McKinney is likely to be an exception to the rule.

"No sir, I am not planning on doing that because I want to be sure about my decision," the LeFlore High star says. "If a school really wants me, they will be willing to wait."

When she does head off to college, McKinney has several ideas on what she would like to declare as her major. "I want to study either business management or sports broadcasting," she says, adding with a laugh, "I like to talk."

Commenting on her interest in Auburn, McKinney says likes the up-tempo style of play Fortner's Tigers prefer. "I like the pace of the game and the fact that they let their bigs play on the outside as well as the inside and that they go to their bigs," she says.

McKinney notes that she enjoyed herself on the Auburn campus at Fortner's camp. "I had a good time and learned a lot of post moves and a lot of different post defenses," she says. "There was a lot of good competition there and I was glad about that."

A starter since her ninth grade season in high school, McKinney should have the size to be an effective post player in college, too. "I am 6-4 now and I think I am still growing and will probably grow another inch," she says.

McKinney says she plans to spend a lot of time the rest of the summer working on her game in addition to playing AAU ball for the Georgia Blazers where she will be watched by college coaches from around the country who can check out the prospects in July, but cannot talk to them.

There is another reason why McKinney is looking forward to the AAU competition other than being scouted while she plays. "It is good for me because there are a lot of tall girls for me to play against," she points out. "That is not the case in Mobile. I am either the second tallest or tallest in Mobile."

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