"Sleeper" CA Forward On The Radar

One of the best kept secrets on the West coast may turn out to be one of the best breakout stories of the coming summer. The brother of a former NBA forward, 6-foot-8 California forward James Keefe has gotten a lot of early interest.

After not playing a major AAU schedule over the past few years, Ranco Santa Margarita (CA) High standout James Keefe has been able to fly under the national radar. However, that hasn't prevented him from being targeted by a number of high major programs including UCLA, Arizona, Stanford, Kentucky, and most recently Duke.

While it isn't clear just how much of a priority the sophomore forward will be for the Blue Devils, sources confirm that he has recently begun to receive a good amount of mail and interest from the Duke coaching staff.

With top power forwards always at a premium when it comes to recruiting, Keefe, with continued improvement, could establish himself as one of the country's best big guys in the class of 2006. When asked for their opinion of Keefe, TheInsiders.com's west coast recruiting experts wrote:

"He has a very good frame and moves very well. He's got good hands and feet, and he can shoot the ball fairly well out to about 17 feet or so. He's had good coaching from the staff at Santa Margarita and he's got a nice feel for the game. He also competes -- very willing to bang and play inside.

His brother, Adam, played at Stanford from 1989-1992 before a nine year NBA career with Atlanta, Utah, Golden State, and finally Portland. There he was considered one of the more athletic power forwards in the country, thanks to a long commitment to volleyball, and other sports. Most analysts believe the younger brother will progress along the same path and become the same caliber of athlete.

Growing up the younger Keefe admits he didn't really have a set favorite program, but he did always follow programs like Duke, UCLA, and North Carolina.

So does that mean he's willing to make a journey across the country to go to school?

"I haven't really thought about staying close to home or going away for school," he told TheInsiders.com. "It's mainly about where I feel I can be happy. A lot depends on the basketball program and the kind of education I can get."

A solid student who doesn't anticipate and problems qualifying, Keefe says he also doesn't anticipate an early commitment at this point.

"I don't want to rush into anything right now. I'd like to take my visits and just see what is out there for me."

TDD Recruiting Analyst Clint Jackson contributed to this report

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