Florida Workout: Day Belonged To Knight

CLEARWATER --- Now in it's third year of existence, the Nike Team Florida Fall Workout and Exposure Camp kicked off Saturday. Taking the floor on the first day of the event were juniors and seniors. It wasn't tough to identify the top player in attendance. Junior uber stud Brandon Knight who proved to be every bit as good as his top five ranking.

Terrance Beasley, SF- While his 6-6 listing is a bit on the generous side, it didn't limit the active wing's effectiveness. Thanks to great hands, above average athleticism a natural nose for the ball and great timing he made every loose ball his own. His comfort zone is playing the role of a junkyard dog that gets on the glass and scores in transition but his jumper shows promise. Should he decide to wait until the spring, his recruitment could get pretty interesting.

Ben Eblen, PG- The future VCU Ram has a great career as a politician ahead of him when basketball finishes. He shares the ball, engages his teammates and onlookers in conversation and is just a solid all-around player. He won't wow you with any one particular thing, but the lefty gets the job done.

Sirin Gohkan, PF- A Turkish import, the 6-8 Gohkan is an intriguing prospect at the mid major level. He can stroke it to the three point line, runs the floor well and hits defenders with jump hooks in the lane. At only 180 pounds or so, he isn't the most physically intimidating guy and how quickly he can add weight and strength will be important to his ultimate success.

Darrick Brown, SF/SG- A little on the small side for a three man, the 6-2 Brown is a high level athlete who electrified onlookers with a ferocious windmill jam late in the day. A much improved ball handler who attacks the rim relentlessly, it was nice to see him knock down a handful of pull-up jumpers.

Tylisman Armstrong, PF- After showing promise at this same event last September, the 6-8 insider has taken his game to the high major level. A sneaky athlete who gets off the floor quickly for second and third attempts at tips, he works hard and has a nice skill level. With good touch, his favorite move is a spin into a left handed jump hook.

Brandon Knight, PG- What's not to like about Knight's approach? He plays hard, can get to the rim at will and speeds by defenders in the open court for fastbreak buckets. Unselfish as well, Knight showed great poise in picking apart zone defenses. He had the pull-up jumper rolling out to three and mixed in a couple of high wire tip finishes that drew ahhs. A humble kid who appears to be well liked by his peers, he's the total package.

Okaro White, PF- Not sure what it is about The Workout, but it always brings out the best in the string bean four man. He played above the rim, ran the floor for buckets and was active on the offensive glass. His skill level continues to grow and he's developed a couple of reliable post moves and has turned into a threat to score over his right or left shoulder. He makes some deep jumpers, but his release is slow and he butters his bread thanks to supreme quickness and agility in the lane.

Dwight Powell, PF- The Canadian import put together and excellent day. As his teammates overlooked him in the post early on, he went to work on the glass and as a shot blocker in the lane. Eventually, his teammates started feeding him the ball and he was able to show off his high skill level.

Marcus Blake, PF- Long armed and active on the interior, Blake kept the energy level high. He runs the floor, gets his share of jams in the lane and will block an occasional shot. With continued development he tracks as a blue collar mid major level guy.

Dennis Mavin, PG- In what is looking like it's going to be a deep point guard class, Mavin is another guy drawing high major consideration. A true competitor who stepped up and went right at Brandon Knight in the final round of games, he's very good with his off (left) hand. He attacks the rim and has developed a pretty good pull-up jumper.

A couple of things to note with Brandon Knight's game. First, he looks like he's worked hard on his jumper and he's almost completely gotten rid of the slight hitch at the top of his jumper. Second, his speed in the open court has been severely undervalued. … It really looks like Dwight Powell has it figured out. Even though he's capable of stroking jumpers to 17 feet and can put the ball on the floor and attack from the high post, he doesn't fall into the same trap of hunting perimeter that many young big guys with skill do. …

It's interesting to watch the stages of Dennis Mavin's jumper. Going to his right, he takes a hard dribble or two and explodes into a confident looking shot from between 12 and 18 feet. Going left, there's a little less explosion and confidence. Move him out to the three point line and there's a lot less confidence and the shot turns into much more of a set shot that comes off of his right shoulder. … Junior Patrick Konan impressed for the second year in a row with his impressive athleticism. However, it's his improved jumper that is good the three point line that is the most positive sign with the mid level prospect's game. …

He didn't stroke it quite as well as he's capable of, but lefty Greg Gantt is also tracking as an excellent mid to upper mid major level prospect. In addition to his compact stroke from deep, he's got the strength to make the adjustment to college ball in speedy fashion. …

Ty Armstong listed interest from Penn State (offer), Florida, Florida State, Marquette, Clemson, Mississippi, Arizona State (offer), Kansas and Virginia Commonwealth (offer). … Dennis Mavin rattled off a list of high majors that included Marquette, Auburn, Louisiana State, Mississippi, Florida, Virginia Tech, and Florida State. … Judging by his list, Darrick Brown won't be leaving the state of Florida. The livewire athlete listed South Florida, Central Florida, Jacksonville, Florida Atlantic and Stetson. …

Dwight Powell says that he's got no favorites but did rattle off a list that included Florida, Southern California, Stanford, Penn State, Marquette, Virginia and South Florida. .. Terrance Beasley said that there's a chance that he could wait until the spring and he'll have lots of schools joining South Florida, Florida International, Stetson, Jacksonville, Georgia Southern and Southern.

Finally, Okaro White's recruitment will take place exclusively on the high major level and the slim big man already claims offers from Georgia Tech, Florida State, Florida, Memphis and Indiana while Kentucky and Kansas have started to show interest. …


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