Vegas: Day Five Recap

LAS VEGAS — Sunday brought conclusion to a week of victories and defeats, for not only the players but also the coaches and scouts at the tables, and we have our champions.

I spent my day at the Super 64 and enjoyed the opportunity to watch the 17-, 16- and 15-under finals.

Paul Jorgensen, SG, New Heights — This 6-2 wing at Ramsey (N.J.) Don Bosco put his name on the radar for a lot of schools this week. Previously a low or maybe a mid-major, he played the role of high-major scorer in Vegas. He's a strong, aggressive and speedy guard who handles so well he could slot as a combo, but I prefer him as a wing to maximize his scoring output. He's a fine three-point shooter with a high-arching shot and a willingness to attack off the bounce. He's at least a mid-major prospect and possibly toward the upper end. His list entering the tournament included George Washington, Fairfield, Harvard and other lower Division I programs, but that could change quickly.

Kevon Looney, PF, Milwaukee Running Rebels — Looney can play better than he did in the final, though clearly his skills were on display. He's an outstanding shooter and interior passer who uses his length to accumulate blocks. He didn't finish inside well this game and his team lost, but there's a reason such elite programs are involved.

Damontre Jefferson, PG, Milwauke Running Rebels — He once again got into with players, officials and the opposing coach, but there's no questioning Jefferson's talent. He topped the 30-point mark in the championship game and kept his team in the contest. He's a streaky shooter who got hot from deep and also made several spectacular drives.

Rex Pflueger, SG, Compton Magic Select (16s) — Pfluger actually didn't play his best in the Magic's Vegas triumph, but he has become a topic of national and regional debate and thus warrants inclusion within this report. He's not as athletic as his spectacular dunk here earlier in the weekend, as he's a one-footed leaper and those guys sometimes do outlandish things in a way that's not truly illustrative of overall athleticism. That's one side of the debate, and if you consider Pfluger to have only average quickness then he looks more like a lower high-major.

But I like him a bit more than that because in addition to a very quick shooting release — not quite as fast as former Virginia guard Curtis Staples', but still fast — and is a slick driver and passer who's effective off the dribble even without an elite first step. We'll see what happens once he fills out and steps up to 17s next year, but he definitely made his mark during the summer.

Cameron Walker, WF/PF, Compton Magic Select (16s) — West Coast high-majors have descended upon this mobile and active forward, who lacks a defined position but doesn't lack for game. He was very effective as a post scorer on Sunday, setting up shop from outside the paint and delivering via turnarounds and hooks. He also can face the bucket and has the speed to get ahead of opponents in the open court. We're eager to watch how he slots defensively next year at this time. Will he possess the strength to defend inside, or will he have the quickness to guard wings?

Sedrick Barefield, PG, Compton Magic Select (16s) — As much a known commodity as his teammates, Barefield shot very well in the first half of the title tilt. He's a good pull-up shooter from medium distance and can extend to three, and along with that he's strong and very active. He'll need to become more economical with his dribbling and overall it's too early to project exactly how he'll land in the eyes of college coaches, but here he landed some hardware for his club and that's worth noting.

Michael Bibby, PG, Team Bibby Red (15s) — Watching the kid of a player you watched in high school makes you feel old. That aside, the younger Bibby — a 5-11 Phoenix (Ariz.) Shadow Mountain product — is a good prospect and showed a lot of guts in his team's defeat to the Compton Magic in the 15-under final. He's a very heady floor general who shoots accurately (albeit he flips his shot some), scores on winding drives and sets up teammates for buckets. He has a long way to go in terms of strength and athleticism, but major tools are present.

J.J. Rhymes, SG, Team Bibby Red (15s) — Colleague Scott Phillips noted that Rhymes has one of the all-time great hybrid basketball/hip-hop names, and that's tough to argue. On the hardwood he's a very fast transition scorer who puts his head down and makes a lot of positive plays. This was just a taste, but certainly he's someone will track going forward.

The Super 64 MVP actually was Jordan Washington, but he's not listed above because the 6-7 center will head to Indian Hills (Iowa) Community College this fall.

Very few coaches turned out for the final day, but Mike Krzyzewski stayed all the way through in order to watch Looney. … Mark Gottfried was on hand to take in Cody Martin and Team Loaded … Michigan State and Tennessee also were represented, among others …


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