Bradley a prized Gator target

HAMPTON, Va. — Opening night at the EYBL Hampton event featured quite a few players we know very well, but one of those with clout — Florida center Tony Bradley — had enjoyed relatively less exposure prior to Friday night.

Each 1 Teach 1 has featured impressive talent since joining the EYBL. The program won the illustrious Peach Jam in 2013 and consistently has churned out high-major prospects.

Tony Bradley almost certainly will join them. Although the 6-9 center boasts offers from schools at all levels, his most serious contenders appear to be those competing in the country’s strongest leagues — including the Gators.

Bradley entered the evening carrying the No. 36 ranking, and if anything that number appeared slightly low on Friday night. He possesses excellent hands, long arms and high shoulders, all of which enable him to play taller than his actual height. He can be a center in today’s college game, with the idea that perhaps he can evolve into more of a forward as he matures.

While not explosive from a standing position, Bradley scores via hooks (usually right-handed hooks over his left shoulder), tip-ins, and transitions extremely quickly from catch to shot.

As someone who’s playing to establish a more robust identity, he understands that he must focus on each and every game.

”Just to play hard, that’s my strength,” Bradley said. “I like to face up and shoot the 15 footer.”

Bradley’s shooting range certainly holds promise. Most of today’s successful big men can step out and bury an open look, and from that perspective he’s already ahead of the game.

His recruitment already has progressed meaningfully as well. Earlier this year, Bradley embarked upon his first official visit to North Carolina.

”That was my very first official visit, I enjoyed it,” Bradley said. “Coach Roy, he’s a great coach. I spent a lot of time with him over that weekend. It was a great experience.”

The Tar Heels certainly have company, however. Bradley has claimed offers from Florida, Alabama, Auburn, Clemson, Miami, Illinois, South Carolina, Tennessee and various others. In short, he won’t lack for options as decision day nears.

He intends to learn as much about his favorites as he can, and he also remains focused on personal improvement.

I’m gonna take all five of them (visits),” he said. “My conditioning, that’s what I really want to improve on, so I can go back and forth.”

Based on Friday’s night’s performance, Bradley may warrant a move up the rankings upon our next release.

Despite being a relative local, the Gators certainly aren’t taking him for granted.

”(I talk to) Florida very often,” Bradley said. “They just visited me last week.”

Bradley added that he might choose to take an official visit to Gainesville despite the fact that he’s more of a local.

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