ABCD: Day Four

After spending four days watching arguably the top three or four players in the country, we've come to one conclusion. Check that out - and also who fared well in the high-scoring all-star games at Reebok ABCD as the camp concluded on Sunday.

Two things became clear after spending four days at the Reebok ABCD Camp.

1) There is no clear-cut number one player in the country.

2) The entire O.J. Mayo saga is just that – a fiasco.

Let's start with the best player in the camp. Kevin Love put up the best numbers (a camp-leading 38.8 player rating), but he wasn't really his dominating self after the first game of the camp on Thursday.

Mayo was consistently good throughout the camp, but not spectacular. He showed flashes of what a No. 1 player in the land is supposed to be, but it wasn't reminiscent of LeBron, Dwight Howard or Greg Oden.

Derrick Rose. Well, you can forget about that one. It doesn't matter how injured he was on Friday. He came to ABCD for a chance to go up against Mayo and he didn't even give it the old college try because of an ankle injury.

Bill Walker has earned just as much right to the top spot as anyone else. He plays as hard as anyone, is more athletic and has a much-improved mid-range jumper.

The bottom line, though, is there just isn't a top player in the land. When we polled a dozen high-major Division 1 head or assistant coaches who have seen all the elite players at one time or another, there were six players who received votes: Mayo, Love, Walker, Rose, Kyle Singler and Michael Beasley.

________ As far as the Mayo saga is concerned, the North College Hill (Ohio) guard said he'd make an announcement at ABCD about his college decision.

It never happened.

In an exclusive interview on Thursday morning, Mayo said that USC would be the destination and even gave comments to support the decision. His summer teammate and friend, big man Aaron Pogue, confirmed the decision as well and will also go to USC.

"It's a great opportunity," Mayo said about USC on Thursday morning. "It's a nice campus, they have a good incoming class and it'll be easy to get players to come out there to help."

"I'm going to get it over with this weekend," Mayo said.

Mayo kept saying he'd make a public announcement by the end of the camp, but the sticking point was to have his mother in attendance for the news conference. She never arrived and the only news conference held by Mayo and his other highly touted teammate, Bill Walker, was a laughingstock in which no recruiting questions were allowed.

The problem with Mayo's situation, like many other top players nowadays, is not Mayo. It's those around him. He's being pulled in numerous directions and really doesn't seem capable of even making simple decisions.

While Mayo has said he'll commit to USC, there's no telling what's going to happen and if he ever even has a news conference to announce the decision.

______ Moving onto the all-star games, it was no different than in past year's. Plenty of points, dunks and no-look passes and no defense.

The black team, led by Syracuse-bound point guard Johnny Flynn's 23 points and seven assists, edged out the yellow team, 170-165.

J.J. Hickson finished with 22 points and eight boards while Love added 14 points, a dozen rebounds and five assists for the black team.

Corey Fisher (Villanova) led the yellow team with 28 points and six assists while Walker added 24 points, Tracy Smith finished with 22 points and eight rebounds and Mayo added 17 points and seven assists.

In the underclassman all-star game, New York native Devin Ebanks led the maroon team to a 127-122 victory with 19 points and seven boards. Terrell Vinson added 16, Roberto Nelson 15 and both Chris Braswell and Kenny Boynton chipped in 14.

Dante Anderson led the white squad with 22. Olu Ashaolu finished with 19 and nine boards, Renardo Sidney had 14 and 10 rebounds and Brandon Jennings scored 14 points and dished out 12 assists in the losing effort.

Scout Hoops Top Stories