West Coast Review of Nike

Here's a rundown of every west coast player at the Nike All-American Camp, and an evaluation of their performance. There were some players who really stood out from the west, including one who is clearly the best prospect, and another who turned in the best performance...

Martell Webster, 6-6 JR SF, Seattle (Wash.) Seattle Prep. He was the best prospect from the west coast at Nike. Webster is big and very skilled, and stepped up among a top level of competition here and was fearless. He's 6-6 and 215 now and still on the skinny side, so he could very well become 6-6 to 6-7 and 230 pounds and still be a small forward, and probably be the #1 prospect in the west in the 2004 class and conservatively a top 20 player nationally. Arizona is his current favorite, but other schools, including big UCLA and big national programs, will pull out all the stops.

Josh Shipp, 6-5 SR SG, Los Angeles (Calif.) Fairfax. He turned in the best performance of any west coast player in the camp. It's interesting, too, since he's coming off a somewhat disappointing junior season, and then to bust out like he has here in Indianapolis is surprising. He had to be among the leading three-point shooters at the camp, if not the leader. But he also showed a nice all-around game, passing the ball really well, playing under control and not making mistakes, while showing some very improved hops and athleticism. While we don't put much stock in dunking, Shipp did get up very high to dunk over one of the top rising juniors in the camp, Vernon Macklin, Wednesday night. Shipp will see his recruitment pick up, and expect to see more national names get involved. We have a recruiting update coming soon.

Jordan Farmar, 6-1 SR PG, Woodland Hills (Calif.) Taft. He had two very good days and then followed it up with two mediocre days. He pressing some, and wasn't as successful passing the ball as he was initially at the camp. His usually deadly outside shot also wasn't going down. But his instincts for getting players the ball and his ability to run a team were still very evident. He didn't hurt his stock here, but didn't build upon it either.

Amir Johnson, 6-9 JR C, Los Angeles (Calif.) Verbum Dei. After a couple of disappointing months since last season, Johnson really turned it on here. He looks raw, and really is, but he still gets it done on pure instincts. He blocked shots, rebounded, and scored with just pure instinctual post moves. He tends to throw the ball up at the basket, but with such a soft touch, it goes in all the time. He also showed a great passing ability here from the high post and out of the low post. By the evening session on Wednesday he was looking to post up every time down the floor and his teammates, obviously knowing he's a good bet to score from the post, were looking for him aggressively. We're hearing stories that Johnson's academics are really not good and it'd be a shame if it were true for a kid with this much potential. A few national scouts indicated he'll be among at least the top 30 players in his class nationally.

Chris Miles, 6-10 SR C/PF, Provo (Utah) Timpview. Miles started out slow, possibly a little intimated by the athletes here, but by Wednesday he wasn't very shy anymore and was beating his opponents on both sides of the floor. He runs very well for someone 6-10, so he can get out on a break. Offensively he can face the basket, but he can also go inside. While others were getting tired, he seemed to be buoyed by his success and played harder and stronger as the week went along. We've heard his academics aren't a good situation, which is also a shame since he's a high major player who would come in and play as a freshman at the high major level.

Maarty Leunen, 6-8 JR PF/SF, Redmond (Ore.) High. Leunen was a bit overmatched by the athleticism here at the outset, but found his niche, which was playing hard and being physical, while stepping out to about 15 to look for his shot. And he was generally successful. He also showed a great passing sense, looking to find teammates with the ball, which is unusual at a camp like this. He definitely improved his stock, and we heard that some of the big names that have been sniffing around – among them Arizona, Kansas and UCLA – could step up their recruitment of him.

Jon Brockman, 6-6 JR PF, Snohomish (Wash.) High. He's undersized, has short arms and isn't explosive off the floor, but he just gets it done. He's tough, plays hard and wears down obetter athletes and exploits them. He's going to convince some high majors by next year that they'd rather take a 6-6, marginally athletic power forward than someone bigger and more naturally athletic, because more than likely he'll continue to beat up that kind of competition. He's also a very good student, so look for the likes of Stanford to be involved.

Harvey Perry, 6-4 SR SG, North Las Vegas (Nev.) Cheyenne. Perry can be intriguing. At times he looks like a high major combo guard, and at other times he disappears. It will be interesting to see if a high major will take a chance on him and believe they can get him to sustain effort and play at a higher level all the time. Some high majors – including Arizona – were scouting him here.

Antonio Kellogg, 6-1 SR PG/SG, Oakland (Calif.) McClymonds. He had a good camp, basically showcasing his talent Monday in a game where he practically did everything right. Even when he's making mistakes, though, he's so darn quick, and especially at 6-1, that he's still intriguing as a prospect. But when he's on, he's hitting his shots, making great passes and making everyone around him good. He has academic issues but San Diego State was following him around here and have offered.

David Pendergraft, 6-5 SR SF, Brewster (Wash.) High. Played his game and was generally successful. He won't really shine in a camp environment since he plays a very team-oriented style, but even so, he still had some very nice moments. He's still a very good get for Gonzaga.

Marcus Johnson, 6-5 JR SF, Los Angeles (Calif.) Westchester. The rap on Johnson has always been: Great athlete, not great skills. Recently, though, it looked like he had improved his skills – specifically his shooting and ball-handling. Here in Indianapolis, though, up against this level of competition and being fatigued, the skills kind of broke down a bit. He has definitely improved, but he still has a ways to go in refining them. The elite high-major athleticism, though, was still readily apparent.

Robert Rothbart, 7-0 SR PF, Cupertino (Calif.) Monta Vista. He looked out of his league in the games, but had better success in the three-on-three, where he had more touches and more space to work. He actually defended arguably the #1 player in the country, Al Jefferson, pretty well in the three-on-three. But he definitely struggled everywhere else. He's just still so weak and needs to improve his strength, and would really benefit from a redshirt year wherever he goes. He'll never be a true post player, but more of a face-up four, but needs strength to get there. Stanford was watching him pretty intently, and the word is that, if he gets accepted by Stanford's admissions, which is probably a good bet, he'll be in Palo Alto in 2004.

Mitch Johnson, 6-0 JR PG, Seattle (Wash.) O'Dea. Johnson generally played solidly, showing that he had enough quickness to compete here, and wasn't intimidated. He proved that he's a mid-major prospect in the 2005 class.

Rico Tucker, 5-11 SR PG, San Diego (Calif.) University. He's always good for a highlight reel dunk, which he got off Wednesday night. A 360 actually. Tucker continues to improve, and make the effort to pass the ball and set up his teammates. He still thinks a bit too much like a shooting guard, and looks to score, but he plays hard, especially on defense. It will be interesting to where he ends up, what level of school, with high-major athleticism and low- to mid-major basketball talent.

Todd Follmer, 6-11 SR C, Rancho Santa Margarita (Calif.) Santa Margarita. Follmer stuck it out and made a good effort all week even though he was a bit in over his head here among so many talented athletes.

Derrick Low, 6-1 SR PG, Honolulu (Haw.) Iolani. He showed steadiness running the point for his team, and some well developed shooting skills. He'll be limited by a lack of athleticism and quickness. After having not seen him since last summer (we don't get scouting trips to Hawaii), his play here confirmed that he's a low to mid-major.

Jamal Boykin, 6-6 JR PF, Los Angeles (Calif.) Fairfax. The kid never gives anything less than a 100% effort, even when he's overmatched as he was here at Nike.

Mike Pagan, 5-9 SR PG, Los Angeles (Calif.) Verbum Dei. After only a day and a half of competition, Pagan was injured and didn't participate.

Chris Henry, 6-8 SR PF/C, Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei. Henry, playing with this level of talent, doesn't really make the flashy play. In fact, he doesn't really score much or even get many rebounds. But he's curiously effective in other ways, mostly being able to body up against big-time athletes and keep them away from the basket, boxing out and setting screens. He was pretty fearless here, against players who could jump a couple of feet higher than he. Mid-majors will probably appreciate his blue-collar approach.

Mike Gerrity, 6-0 JR PG, Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei. Gerrity is a trooper, who played hard every moment he was on the floor. He was overmatched, though, playing against this level of talent.

Next Stop: the Adidas ABCD Camp in New Jersey...

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