Day Three Recap
2002 Top Performers
Jason Fraser, C, Tim Thomas (17s): Once again Fraser was part of a winning combination. His work on the glass and at the defensive end once again stood out and impacted ballgames. He flashed a little more offensive variety than usual as the major big man option for the Playaz. Great weekend for the Long Island Panthers import.
Rashad Anderson, SG, Tallahassee Wildcats: His bid to become a McDonald's All-American is legit and he repeatedly hit for 30 or more points at the Weber. His game is steadily improving and his strength is becoming evident off the dribble.
Travis Garrison, PF, Face Systems: This is the third day we've written about him and for good reason. In a matchup against Fraser, he took the big man outside and was able to once again make a ton of perimeter jumpers. Our colleague, Mike DeCourcy of The Sporting News, wrote a column in July about his perimeter skills and since then, Garrison has been proving DeCourcy correct each time out.
Kevin Young, C, Tallahassee Wildcats: Forget the numbers as his could have been bigger but a few nagging injuries and some close range shots that didn't go down factored into his modest scoring totals. The real story here is that the Jamaican is quite fearless down low and his offensive game is rapidly improving.
John Winchester, SG, Tim Thomas (17s): We owe Winchester a sincere apology for leaving him off the end of summer Top 100 list and will make the needed changes in our postseason list. "The Rifleman" is a scoring whiz from deep where he nicely steps right into his jumper and off the dribble where he easily is able to get to the rack despite his slight build.
Vincent Grier, SG, Tim Thomas Playaz (17s): This was his first outing with the Playaz and he was a nice combo along with Winchester. Grier's ability to get to the rim will make Bobby Lutz at Charlotte very happy. He's been working on his shooting and his playmaking skills and the progress is quite nice.
Terrance Whiters, PG, Baltimore Select: He's come along way since he struggled in Atlanta with the Celtics back in June. Since then, he's turned in a nice performance at the Big Time and has advanced his playmaking skills with Select. He's fast and is getting people the basketball. Tough kid, and a nice player.
Dakin Braddick, SF, National Christian: He had a weekend worthy of drawing attention from high-major schools. He might be developing a go to spin move on the baseline where he easily gets off his jumper. He's a tall wing player with plenty of scoring tools and a steadier jumper will make him extremely tough.
Donald Copeland and Dwayne Lee, Playaz (17s): We talk about them in tandem because they are a tandem. They had big performances in the title game and were key in the run to the championship. Lee shot it well and Copeland is simply a nice leader and defender.
Akini Adkins, SF, Tallahassee Wildcats: His offensive skills range from a very nice medium-range jumper to some work on the glass in the paint. Like Braddick, he's very thin, but he's only a junior and the talent level is certainly there.
Keith Blanks, SF, National Christian: In a backyard brawl against the DC Blue Devils Blanks took the matchup personally and was magnificent. He was the reason why his team pulled the mild upset. His athleticism, intensity and deep jumpers got it done. He's been reclassified as a junior and he's improving as a player. He has a big heart. His dunk over Isaiah Swan of the Devils was awesome.
Sean Banks, SG/SF, Tim Thomas (16s): He looks like an extremely smooth wing scorer. It's truly a group effort for the younger Playaz, but Banks looks like one of those guys who could go out and get 20 when he really wants to.
Will Sheridan, PF, Tim Thomas (16s): The Delawarean is coming along. Like Kevin Young, forget the numbers. The true story is that he's going to be a fine scorer on the blocks and over the weekend he put together a fun runs where he flashed a variety of scoring tools including a foul line jumper and sweet ½ hook.
Jamar Nutter, Guard, Tim Thomas (16s): He's building on a fine performance in Las Vegas. Nutter handles it well enough to play some point, can score it from 3-range and is very, very strong.
Aaron Agnew, C, West Virginia Mohawks: We didn't get to actually see him play because his team's morning game was a forfeit when the opponent didn't show. However, we watched the 6-10, 300+ pounder go through a light warmup. He's remarkably agile, can put the ball through his legs and around his back and looks like he might have a good touch. The Bellaire (OH) High product averaged 18 points and 12 boards as a freshman and was an HM all-stater.
Re'Sean Dickey, PF, South Carolina Ravens: When his team looked lethargic, Dickey gave them a lift in their morning game. A foul line jumper was a nice touch but his scoring on the blocks – a sweet drop step and dunk – is impressive for his age. Again, he's just a pup and clearly one of the best post players in his class.
2003 PF Wayne Marshall of Positive Image looks like a player. He's 6-8, 220 and attends King in Philly. … Forward Ryan Lambert of the DC Blue Devils looks like one of those "lunch pail" guys. He's a more than willing rebounder and a sparkplug on the glass. … Steven Leven, a small forward with great athleticism, could wind up at Laurinburg Prep. He's a big-time athlete. He threw down a nasty dunk on National Christian's Jabbar Young… Face Systems senior SG Corey McCrae of DeMatha Catholic can really stroke it. …
Possibly the best game of the tournament was the DC Blue Devils opening round playoff win over Team Georgia. Sophomore guard Isaiah Swann announced his presence with a reported game-high of 28 and Chris McCray tossed in 18 late Saturday night. … The Playaz semifinal game against Baltimore Select was called when Select complained about a few calls. Reportedly, a referee, when questioned on why he was calling so many fouls said, "because I can," and then called the game at the end of the 3rd quarter with Select trailing by 11. … The DC Blue Devils had a chance to beat National Christian in the quarters but a good look from Chris McCray from 3-point range would not go down. …
McDonald's AA Coaches AAU Team: Horace Owens coached the Philadelphia Phoenix to a runner-up finish in the American Division at the Charlie Weber event. If the name sounds familiar, that's because Owens led the 1978 East Team to a win in the McDonald's All-American Game as he scored a team-high 18 points. Owens scored 18 in the victory and would go on to play at Rhode Island and with the Golden State Warriors in the NBA.
Special Thanks: As if not having college coaches attend the event wasn't enough, the horrific terrorist attacks on Sept. 11 placed a serious strain on Charlie Weber to get the event together. Weber put together a fine event and given the circumstances, we need to take this opportunity to say thanks for giving everyone a much needed diversion and good weekend of basketball.