Super Showcase Day 3 Report

The Super Showcase started to hit up in Orlando with the 17 and under group beginning play. Saturday was a busy recruiting day for the Kansas Jayhawks.

A full slate of games on Saturday in Orlando with 17 and under action taking place all over the complex at Wide World of Sports and at high schools in surrounding areas. By the end of the day there were a ton of overtime games and courts backed up over an hour. We saw one game tip off and THEN let the teams warm up. AAU has a rule that games cannot tip after 10p so at one point the teams tipped off and then began a short warmup. Crazy day of games.

Kansas head coach Joe Dooley hopped around from gym to gym and like me, had so many prospects to see you could hardly afford to spend more then one half at a game. Dooley watched Perry Ellis play in the morning and though LJ Rose sat out in the morning, he watched J-Mychal Reese, and Rasheed Sulaimon. In his travels Dooley also got to evaluate 2011 big men Johnny O'Bryant and Dematha star Mikael Hopkins. Both are 6-8 but there's about a 30-lb difference between the two. O'Bryant being the thicker of the two players. They will square off head-to-head on Sunday. Dooley was also court side for the St. Louis Eagles two wins to see Ben McLemore.

2011 Notes
Mikael Hopkins - 6-8 - Team Takeover
Kansas is in the market to fill quite a few spots from the 2011 class and Hopkins is definitely up there as a worthy prospect. Hopkins is a really skilled player and at 6-8 extremely mobile on the interior. He can block shots and is not afraid to handle the ball. Hopkins is coming off a wrist injury but certainly showed no fear dunking the ball or mixing it up inside. Like his game a lot and is built similarly to Markieff Morris.

Johnny O'Bryant - 6-8 - Jackson Tigers
O'Bryant is a bull on the inside with his braids flopping around as he tries to gain post position he always wants the ball. He's extremely aggressive and loves the contact inside. At 230+ inside he is a load. The Tigers had a rough couple of games on Saturday but O'Bryant never lost his will to compete.

Austin Rivers - 6-4 - E1T1 Elite
Austin has size and a ridiculous ability to break you down off the dribble. The biggest reason coaches want him is his knack for being able to get his shot off anytime he wants. You salivate over the idea of having the ball in his hands late in the game. His shooting stroke is not particularly good and he strikes me as the type of player who could be streaky from the outside. He's a big time player who draws a big time crowd from defenses, fans, and coaches.

Trevor Lacey - 6-2 -E1T1 Elite
Probably one of the kids I enjoyed watching the most. Lacey is 6-3 and as tough as nails. He's super strong and really athletic. In his first game of the day he made a high flying tip in where he came from well outside the key for the put back. I just think he's extremely solid with the ball and big and strong enough to guard a three yet quick enough to guard a one. In the evening session he hit a shot on the baseline falling out of bounds at the end of the third quarter that showed his strength and his accurate jumper from outside. If he were not on a team with Austin Rivers he'd be drawing his own crowd of coaches. But that works both ways. I think a lot of coaches have seen his terrific game thanks to the attention that Rivers receives. This is one guy you won't see stripped of the ball very often.

Ben McLemore - 6-5 - St. Louis Eagles
McLemore is similar to Lacey in the respect that plenty of coaches come out to watch the star but they figure out there's a pretty good second act. Brad Beal gets the pub and deservedly so because he is an outstanding player but McLemore's athleticism was on display for the world to see. Upon entry to the game, not even five seconds later, McLemore was the recipient of a lob pass off an inbounds that he rose up and flushed home. A little later, on the same play, on a pass that looked way too high, McLemore rose up and flushed this one with his left-hand. A sick play that had a full gymnasium oohing and ahhing. McLemore scored seven quick points and took full advantage of driving left and using his body to shield the ball for an and-one. In this game he didn't shoot much from the perimeter but I'm told by people that his stroke is good. He's got a slender frame, can handle the rock, and absolutely can leap out of the gym. Eagles won this game in OT with an incredible show from Beal who just could not be stopped.

2012 Notes

Rasheed Saulaimon - 6-3 - Houston Hoops
Saulaimon is a smooth guard with long, skinny legs and he can really fill it up from three-point range. He looks like he's only going to get better and though the two terms are oft used to describe players these days - he's long and athletic. FYI LJ Rose did not play the game I watched.

Perry Ellis 6-7- PPP Basketball Organization
The Wichita, KS star is no stranger to KU fans and Perry Ellis showed why he's high on KU's list of coveted recruits. Ellis is extremely versatile at 6-7 and reminds me of Marcus Morris. Scary thing is that Ellis might be even more athletic than Morris. He can grab a rebound and rip it and go with an adept handle. My favorite play was a blocked shot and then after a quick second jump firing a long pass for fastbreak layup with one hand. Real athletic play. They played a less athletic team in MAC Ohio so Ellis was able to dominate quit a bit inside and driving to the rim. His outside shot wasn't falling but you can see he's got a textbook stroke.  He did mishandle a couple of lobs but there's not much negative for this kid. Top Stories