Collins a Dream at MLK Classic

On Saturday afternoon, Kansas struggled to the finish line and lost their first game to Kansas State since 1994. Saturday evening, KU's star recruit showed why he's so highly regarded during a dazzling performance. With a boisterous crowd voicing their appreciation over every crossover, no look pass, tough finish and mean mug, Chicago (IL) Crane point guard Sherron Collins led his team to an 84-70 win over an athletic and talented Gary (IN) West Side.

CROWD FUELS COLLINS

Let’s get this straight, each time Collins takes the court he’s a marked man. The crowd knows who he is, opposing players know who he is and that knowledge combined with his exciting style of play makes for a charged atmosphere. It’s also pretty clear that the fireplug 5-11 PG feeds off the electricity. Saturday night Collins took as much energy as he could from the at times frenzied crowd and then gave them a little something in return during a 34 point, six rebound and three assist effort.

The first time he touched the ball, Collins stared down West Side defender Dashawn Clay. Clay, a very talented 6-4 freshman combo guard, is going to have his time in the spotlight, but on the first drive Collins completely disrespected the young talent by taking him down low and posting him up for an almost too easy deuce. Then he did it again and on the way back down the court he turned to the crowd and waived his arms into the air commanding them to get out of their seats.

For their support, Collins continued to treat the fans to a steady diet of quick crossovers, frighteningly fast spin moves and dribble drive combinations that defy description. This was simply a case of Collins doing what he does best.

After several tough finishes around the hoop, Collins took his game outside draining consecutive long threes from the right wing to notch his 20th point, with a minute to go in the first half.

As Crane took control in the second half Collins focused more on getting his teammates involved and stepped up his defensive intensity. Still, the showman in him made sure that he left the crowd with something to take home on a final embarrassment of the West Side squad. Taking the ball in the backcourt on the left side he spun to his left shoulder out of an attempted trap, tiptoed down the sideline to halfcourt, spun again -- this time to his right -- to get to the center of the court, immediately crossed over left, crossed over right and then spun through the lane for an impossible floating left handed bank shot that brought the crowd to their feet.

MORE NOTES FROM CHICAGO

No matter what city you are in, the action always seems so much better when there is an involved crowd on hand. The Road Show would love to quote some of the things being yelled to Collins by both his supporters and detractors, but this is a family website so you’ll have to use your imagination.

While Collins is getting all of the headlines, keep an eye out for his sophomore teammate Dion Dixon. A 6-2 combo guard, Dixon is a spectacular leaper with a nose for getting to the rim off the dribble. His jumper has to be respected, he’s got quick hands on defense and he’s got all the tools to be a high major guard himself.

While DeShawn Clay certainly had his troubles defending Sherron Collins, the 6-4 freshman from Gary (IN) West Side is no joke himself. The long and slender wing – who can even play some point – wields a quick trigger and a beautiful high arching jumper. He’s already got a nice arsenal of head and shoulder fakes and creates opportunities for himself and others. Just a month ago he looked completely lost on the court but his talent is taking control and there’s a good chance people are going to get to know his name down the road. …

THE story in Chicago right now is the play of Chicago (IL) Marshall senior guard Patrick Beverley. The Road Show will get a look at him this evening and if his game lives up to the buzz that surrounds him, he’s going to be a treat.

Virginia has to be excited about Jamil Tucker. The smooth 6-8 combo forward has a deft shooting touch, handles the ball and can create his offense at will. To truly unlock his vast potential though, he must get tougher on the boards and show more than a passing interest in playing defense.

A guy for upper level mid majors to start getting in on is Calumet City (IL) TF North junior Demond Watt. The long and slender 6-7 BF is an ambidextrous performer who makes most of his moves around the glass with his right hand but shoots jumpers and free throws with his left. He was good for 19 points and 19 boards in an impressive outing.

Sunday also means that the Road Show will get a long look at Cincinnati (OH) Harmony junior Alex Tyus. .. The long armed 6-8 BF looked good during a limited viewing on Saturday night. …

  • Total teams seen - 139
  • Total games watched - 84
  • Total Miles traveled - 10,096.

Up Next- MLK Dream Classic, Sunday and Monday.


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