Landesberg a priority for Big East programs

LAS VEGAS, NV -- Louisville coach Rick Pitino has had his eye on Sylvan Landesberg of Flushing, New York for some time. The smooth 6'4 junior guard with a polished offensive game is drawing big time interest and spoke with at the Reebok Big Time Tournament about his recruitment this week.

One of New York State's top talents in the class of 2008 is in Las Vegas for the ongoing Big Time Tournament, and Sylvan Landesberg's intuitive play and silky game has attracted a strong following of coaches.

Louisville's Rick Pitino and St. John's Norm Roberts were on hand to see the 6-foot-5 shooting guard/small forward on Sunday, as the New York Panthers held off Grassroots Canada in Big Time pool play. In the Panthers' night cap, the New York Yorkers convincingly defeated South Coast of California, composed of the Mater Dei High School team 72-51.

Georgia Tech's Paul Hewitt made an appearance at that game. Landesberg scored seven points on 3-for-5 shooting with four rebounds against South Coast as the Panthers trotted out the reserves early in the second half.

Landesberg has offers from several
Big East programs.

Auditioning for some of the game's most recognizable coaches has been an adjustment. But many, like Pitino- who made the trip to Holy Cross High School in Queens to evaluate Landesberg at a tournament earlier in the month- have been out at Panthers' games on a regular basis.

"I do feel some pressure playing in front of the coaches," said Landesberg. "I feel like I have to prove to them what I can do. But many of them have seen me play for some time, so I think they know my game."

Landesberg lists many high major programs among his suitors.

"The schools recruiting me are Georgia Tech, Georgetown, Villanova, St. John's, Virginia Tech, Virginia, Louisville, and UConn," said Landesberg. "Most of those schools have offered me."

A slender wingman with poise, pace, and feel, Landesberg is one of the more polished offensive players New York City has to offer at the moment. He sees the floor well, possesses a credible mid-range game and a strong hoops IQ.

One thing Sylvan does need to continue to develop is his physical strength. His return to the ABCD camp earlier this month proved fruitful not necessarily because of the increased notoriety and attention, but because it confirmed that he still has work to do.

"It was good because it made me learn that I have to play hard all the time," said Landesberg. "It made me realize that I have to work on my weaknesses, that I have to get stronger.

"It was definitely different this time around. Last year, I was chasing people. This year, I was being chased. People were coming at me. It was a lot different."

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