eBoss Road Show: Future KU Footballer Shines

After spending a few days in Chicago the Road Show returned home to catch the final bit of action at the William Jewell Holiday Classic in Liberty. Followers of the Kansas City prep hoops scene will know that the William Jewell -- with it's unique three division format -- is one of the biggest annual showcases of hoops in the metro area. With several consolation games and championship games in each division there was plenty of action.

Among those standing out was future Kansas football player Phillip Strozier. The football stalwart is also a fine point guard and his 15 points and eight assists were instrumental in Kansas City (MO) Rockhurst’s thrilling 52-52 overtime win over Raytown (MO) South.

WILLIAM JEWELL STANDOUTS

Phillip Strozier - Were he not a higher profile recruit on the football field and thus able to spend more time focusing on hoops, the powerful and quick 6-0 PG would have mid major hoops programs following him closely. He plays hard on both ends of the court, sets up his teammates and scores off the dribble when needed. Not surprisingly the ace defensive back does a nice job of moving his feet and staying in front of opponents defensively and he changes directions and accelerates to full speed better than just about anybody in the city.

Roderick Pearson - Southeast Missouri assistant coach Ronnie Dean couldn’t contain an ear to ear grin as he watched his future PG Friday night. Standing 6-2, Pearson is a strong, physical and fast floor general who attacks the rim and anybody around it with extreme ferocity. He plays hoops like Chief Larry Johnson plays football, just mad at the world and fearless. He led the tournament in scoring and still found plenty of time to find teammates for countless assists. SEMO is getting a player who would be drawing upper level Missouri valley and probably even some Big 12 looks if he were available at this point. Pearson is the Road Show’s midseason pick as KC player of the year.

George Goode - After scoring at a 26 point per game clip throughout the first two games of the tournament, the slender 6-8 forward had his troubles against Rockhurst. The Rock pummeled the Raytown South’s junior star with a wave of 250 pound football players that included stud defensive end Derek Hall who is being recruited by the likes of Stanford, Boston College, Kansas, Northwestern and Iowa. While the physical defense limited his production (nine points), anybody who has watched Goode over the years saw signs of growth. For one, Goode stayed in the low post and did his best to battle for position against much stronger players and that’s something he wouldn’t have done a year ago. He also had a few timely offensive rebounds when Ray South needed possessions and his spin move to step back three along the baseline is something no player his size should be capable of.

Conner Teahan - Now that the word is out about the athletic 6-5 junior wing’s scoring ability he’s seeing nothing but box and one defenses. To his credit, Teahan keeps moving and hit gigantic threes when Rockhurst needed them the most as he sent the game to overtime with just over five seconds remaining and won the game with just under three seconds remaining. Not surprisingly he’s a star on the football field as well as a quarterback but word is he prefers hoops and he’s going to get recruited on at least the upper mid major level.

Dominique Johnson - While the Road Show currently favors Pearson as player of the year to this point, Domo isn’t far behind and would be just as worthy a recipient of the award. The skinny 5-9 PG is the heart and soul of Kansas City (MO) Lincoln Prep and he dished out double digit assists while scoring 21 points in a thrilling come from behind 62-60 victory over Independence (MO) Truman to win the Patterson division title. He scores on tough floaters and pull-up jumpers and is deserving of far more division one attention than he is getting.

Steve Moore - Don’t look now, but the nearly 6-9 class of 2008 product from Independence (MO) Truman is rapidly developing into one of the top big men in the area. The big lefty runs the floor like a much smaller player, has big soft hands and good footwork around the hoop. He’s significantly upgraded his athleticism and tries to dunk everything around the hoop while having the skill to step out and hit 12 footers or alertly feed cutters out of double teams. High scoring guard Edriss Floyd is the man for Truman right now, but as Moore continues to step up they are developing into one of the best one-two punches in the city.

MORE NOTABLES FROM WILLIAM JEWELL

After busting loose for 29 points on Thursday, Travis Releford struggled through a poor shooting day as he and his Kansas City (MO) Central teammates struggled. Neither him or any of his teammates ever seemed like they were into the game.

After drawing everybody’s attention earlier in the week by going off for 31 points -- including nine three pointers -- in just 15 minutes of action, Independence (MO) William Chrisman’s 6-2 shooting guard Justin Clark cooled off on Friday. In just three games, Clark managed to launch 39 three pointers, in only 44 minutes, hitting 14 of them. It should be noted that he’s just a freshman and the city is now watching to see if he is a legit prospect or his numbers are a result of Chrisman’s gimmick Grinnell College style offense where they launch 50 plus three pointers a game.

Sticking with the class of 2009, keep an eye on Liberty (MO) High’s 6-4 WG Shaun Adams. He’s got a big time stroke from deep, is a pretty good north/south athlete and plays with poise beyond his young age.

Moving on to the class of 2008, two of the areas young studs went head to head when Smithville (MO) High and Overland Park (KS) St. Thomas Aquinas locked up. Smithville’s 6-5 BF Andrew Jones is already all-state in both football and basketball and STA’s 6-6 ½ BF Clinton Mann is pretty skilled four man for his age. Jones snared 15 rebounds and got to the line while Mann led his team to victory and was the game’s high scorer with 15 points in a tight contest.

Truman’s Edriss Floyd is a dangerous scorer. His clever runners off the dribble and deep range make him virtually impossible to hold under 25 points. Academics may dictate either a prep school year or a junior college stint for the talented 6-2 combo guard, but he’s a very nice looking prospect.

Kansas City (MO) O’Hara junior Justin Hurtt was profiled earlier this week in the KC Star and he didn’t disappoint in a 19 point 10 rebound outing. The 6-4 wing is a high flying lefty and absolute dead ringer facially for Atlanta Hawks rookie Marvin Williams. …

Schools in attendance - Creighton, Southeast Missouri State.

  • Total teams seen - 124
  • Total games watched - 75
  • Total miles traveled - 9,402

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