Brandon Foust, SF, All-Ohio: Love how his athleticism impacts games. Ndudi Ebi aside, Foust might be the top offensive rebounder here. Anything that is rattling around the rim gets dunked home if he's in the vicinity. He led All-Ohio with 23 points but it wasn't enough against the Houston Hoops who exploited All-Ohio's lack of inside force. All-Ohio also had a poor shooting night.
Ndudi Ebi, PF, Houston Hoops: Ebi sat out the first game this morning but used his time wisely in game two. He scored 26 points and pulled down 17 rebounds. His performance was impressive on a number of fronts, the first being that he was injured. Secondly, he scored pretty much any way he wanted to. 17 rebounds? His team only had 31.
Courtney Sims, C, BABC: Quickly, he's becoming one of the most popular recruits in America. Just this week, big man starved Michigan offered him a scholarship, joining a number of teams from high-major leagues. Sims' performance at Nike Camp and subsequent outings here where he's scored and rebounded, have made him a commodity. In recruiting years, he's just a baby but he's growing up quickly.
Al Jefferson, PF, Jackson Tigers: You have to respect a guy who just goes out and gets the basketball off the glass or around the rim. Jefferson scored 18 and had 7 rebounds in a game versus BABC. The potential top player in the Class of 2004 is nimble on his feet, has multiple offensive moves he's comfortable with and generally gets a lot accomplished. Two SEC schools sent their entire staffs to watch him tonight.
Dayshaun Wright, PF, Albany City Rocks: Give it up for 2004's version of Anthony Glover. Wright is stronger than Glover at the same stage but trails the St. John's forward just a shade in athleticism and bounce. Regardless, he makes an impact on games. Just put him on the floor and point him at the basket and good things happen.
Tiki Mayben, PG, Albany City Rocks: After one day of competition, Mayben led the event in assists. His 12-assist outing in the evening shouldn't hurt his bid to lead the event in that category. It goes without saying that this 2005 guard can really distribute the basketball.
Off The Dribble
The Houston Hoops debuted a new player this week. His name is Justin Benson, and he's a 6-8 power forward who can play. He has mid-range game and a nice body. Right now, he says Pepperdine is in good shape while the Waves, Baylor and Houston are in the mix. College of Charleston also gets a mention but they are a longshot at this juncture. In case you were wondering, and we are wondering, Pepperdine seems to have a Texas connection. Last year, they signed Derrick Grubb, also out of Texas.
Around The Gym
Yesterday we wrote how Darian Townes missed the second half of a game. Today, we found out why. Apparently, the NCAA said he hadn't filled out his certification paperwork. So, instead of addressing the rather simple issue with Townes after the game, the NCAA took him out of the game at the half and spent the entire second half making sure he was up on the latest certification principles. Folks, he wasn't going anywhere. What's the problem with waiting until after the game?
Here's one for you: Andrew Lavender has never been named all-conference in his league. This might be the most serious case of player hating we've ever heard. His team went 40-2 in league play the past two years. He's one of the best PGs in the nation, and he's not all-conference. It wasn't like the guy who was named in front of him is a big-timer either. … Here's another one for you. How about Cincinnati and LSU both recruiting Tack Minor? How about John Brady and Bob Huggins sitting next to one another at Tack's game?
Oklahoma had two members of its staff, including the head coach, in the gym watching Andrew Lavender. … Rick Barnes and Mike Davis were the head coaches in the gym watching Ndudi Ebi. Duke sent Chris Collins and Steve Wojciechowski while Arizona assigned Josh Pastner the duty of watching the big fella. … Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim was in the gym presumably watching Dayshaun Wright and maybe even Tiki Mayben who it's said would be welcome at the Carrier Dome. … DC Blue Devils forward Ryan Lambert is a fifth-year player who will enroll at either Winchendon or Hargrave next season. …
Al Jefferson is so good that the entire three-man road staffs of Alabama and Mississippi State were in the gym watching him tonight. … In the look-a-like department, we have our second sighting of the referee who looks like Ball State head coach Tim Buckley. We know coaches will do anything to get a leg up in recruiting, but more than once we had to make sure it wasn't Buckley out there calling the game. …
Stat Check (notes about games from Monday night's session)
Earlier in the day we wrote about Team Texas big man Stephen Verwers. Well, in the nightcap, he scored 12 and had 11 rebounds. … Colin Falls went 4-for-7 from downtown vs. the Charlotte Royals. … Ekene Ibekwe had 24 and 8 in the evening. … Kammron Taylor scored 23 points, including a 4-for-7 effort from downtown. … Point guard Darius Washington had 30 points and one assist on a fine 10-17 FG, 7-9 FT effort. … Johnny Hodge finally made a mark scoring 15 points and grabbing 13 boards vs. Athletes First. … Brandon Cotton scored 21 points on an 8-for-25 FG night. He went an uncharacteristic 0-for-7 from downtown. …