National Prep Showcase: Day 2 Rundown

NEW HAVEN, Conn. – It's a good day when you can watch Andre Drummond and Khem Birch back-to-back. Mix in some Willie Barton and then Calvin Newell goes for 37!

Will Barton, SG, Brewster: He had more than the four assists he was credited with. His passing game was on full display and he had it sizzling. The master of body control, "Willie B" took what was given to him and finished with 14 points. The top rated shooting guard in the country had the flair and the game cooking.

Mo Walker, C, Brewster: He's rocketing up the availables list as we steam toward spring. Walker's a big body with good hands and his footwork is not bad. Until he sheds the weight he'll be a below the rim guy. Definitely worth a flier for a big school especially if they have a strength and conditioning guy who is good at his job. A work in progress but he's progressed each time we've see him since the spring. Chalk up 16 and 7 for him.

Calvin Newell, PG, Mack Academy: The signature performance of the event belongs to this guy. He hung 37 on Winchendon and the game-winner went front rim. Down 10 at the break, he went for 25 in the second half. This guy is strong, tough, defends and he's max 6-feet. 37 points on 13-20 from the floor and 6-for-7 from the line. He's not a pure point in the run-your-team sense, but if you need a bucket maker he's your guy.

C.J. Fair, PF/SF, Brewster: Gotta love the activity level. He rebounded and finished off plays inside. Will Barton dimed him up and he made it count to the tune of 15 and 10 rebounds.

Eric  Ferguson, SF, Winchendon: Somebody has some explaining to do because Charlton Young stole this one. Athletic and he's got ball skills. Not many people saw Georgia Southern play live last year but I did and this guy is the biggest talent they've had in a long time. He's going to impact their program and the Southern Conference.

Ron Giplaye, PF, ND Prep: He's an undersized four man who can play a little taller than listed for one reason: long arms. Giplaye unfolds them inside. The Friars will turn him loose on the glass, hope he can develop a mid-range game and play to his strength, which is tenacity inside. Champlain St. Lambert had no size and Giplaye, as you'd expect, had field day in the paint. 16 and 12 for the big fella.

Billy Baron, PG, Worcester: Let's not beat around the bush, these Barons know what they're doing. Billy is a shot creator and the only guy at this event to use the glass on purpose. His stroke looks pretty (not quite on Jimmy's level) but his game is more about handling, playing point and stuffing the stat sheet. Strong bodied, had 9 rebounds, 4 dimes and never stopped fighting against Brewster.

Chance Rucker, SG, Massanutten: His club lost for the second day in a row but the former Concord Spider took matters into his own hands. Could be a lower level scoring steal. The guy gets buckets, has range and makes shots from different places on the floor. He had 25 points and stroked 5 triples.

Dominique Langston, SG, STM: Back to back outstanding efforts for the future Q-Pac Bobcat. The guy brings it at both ends and he started making jumpers. You can win with him and he'll be a huge part of their team.

Patrick Ackerman, PF/C, Worcester: Typically, we frown on the technical fouls but when a young big who isn't there physically feels the need to pipe up, only to get silenced by the ref, we kind of admired his feistiness. Has plenty of work to do but upper mids and lower level high-majors need to begin a file on him.

Shaquille Thomas, SF, NIA: Looks like he's going to be a member of this class. Love the mid-range and combined with a lively frame he can be a very good player. Had 18 and 6 rebounds.

Andre Drummond, C, STM: Look out when the big fella gets totally healthy and in top shape. Beast around the rim and his feet are very good. Guys have issues getting it to the rim with him around. The body is going to be a major asset. His coach is laying the groundwork and holding him accountable so he's going to get better each season. Forget the stats (6 points, 7 rebounds and 3 blocks) he's playing his way into shape to start the season.

Khem Birch, C, Winchendon: This guy is a Cadillac. Elite of the elite, he's that good. 15 points and 9 rebounds and he played only 19 minutes. Great hands and puts them away at the rim. Blocks a lot of shots and makes you think about the ones he doesn't get too. Mix in the fact that he runs the floor as hard as any young big we've seen this year and he's got Top 10 ability with a chance to enter the big boy stratosphere. Wow!

Chance Rucker said James Madison and Coastal Carolina have been in to see him. … South Florida is in there good with MCI power forward Tyshawn Bell. …

Lee's Vaughn Allen (a low major combo forward) set the tone for the day. He almost had a double-double at the half and at least played his way onto the radar. For a 9 a.m. game, he brought great energy. … Interesting. No head coaches for Drummond but UMass and UConn dispatched deputies. …

Eddie Johnson of FUMA is the Forks' best prospect. He had 15 and made four 3-pointers. … Trahson Burrell had 15 for STM. Looking like a player and he's a junior. … Tulane added a major energy guy in Colton Christian. Does a lot of things and isn't afraid to work the post and mid-post with his strength and athleticism. …

Kyle Cain and his quick lefty jump hook are going to be tough to stop for the Rhode Island Rams. Good hit for them. … Want to see Evan Smotrycz get his confidence up. One of the best shooters in the class, at least we think so, he's got to believe like he did last summer at NBA Camp. Scored 15 points. … Brady Heslip struggled with his jumper but rallied in the second half to hit 5-for-15 from deep. … Like NIA's Ramel Johnson for a Northeast Conference school. …

Iowa State signed a bonafide junkyard dog in Melvin Ejim. Not afraid to scrap and mix it up. Will bring some toughness with him to Ames. … Kiski has a pair of centers, brothers, who toppled the 7-foot mark. Sim Bhullar (2012) and Tanveer Bhullar (2013) are huge. The youngest has the biggest ceiling and is most aggressive right now. With guys this size, you have to step back and evaluate them as they hit markers. For Sim, conditioning, finishing and changing ends are area to address. With Tanveer, you'd like to see him work on changing ends and remaining aggressive. …

Pittsburgh is the leader for center Mo Walker. "I like what they've done with guys like me in the past," Walker said. In the mix are Kansas, Connecticut, Georgetown and Marquette. He has a visit scheduled for Kansas Dec. 18. …

Keith Coleman of Lee has St. Joe's, St. John's, Miami, Nebraska and Providence checking on him. … Massanutten's Allen Jones has Winston-Salem State and Lenoir Rhyne. …


Connecticut, Fairfield, Virginia, Kansas, Iowa State, Rice, Texas, Wake Forest, Ball State, Rutgers, Central Connecticut State, Western Michigan, Louisiana-Lafayette, New Mexico State, Providence, St. Bonaventure, Stony Brook, Baylor, SMU, Wichita State, Washington, Massachusetts, Seton Hall, Drexel, Holy Cross, Kent State, St. John's, Brown, Michigan, Illinois State, Harvard, UNLV, West Virginia.

Head Coaches:

Virginia, Rhode Island, Quinnipiac.


  • Lee 91, Massanutten 74
  • St. Thomas More 78, FUMA 67
  • Hargrave 80, Bridgton 57
  • Winchendon 79, Mack Academy 77
  • New Hampton 79, NIA 70
  • Notre Dame Prep 75, St. Lambert 67
  • Brewster 84, Worcester 79
  • Maine Central 81, Kiski 44

    "I didn't have no schools (after me) last year."

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