Richie Phares Thinks State Title, Recruiting

Power Forward Richie Phares (6-7, 200) is ranked by most scouting services as the #2 player in the Kentucky Class of 2009. That puts Phares just behind Kentucky commit and possible McDonald's All-American Jon Hood and above Miami RedHawk target C.J. Penny. Phares is also the top ranked power forward in his class. However, Phares may be the fourth option on his own high school team.

Power Forward Richie Phares (6-7, 200) is ranked by most scouting services as the #2 player in the Kentucky Class of 2009. That puts Phares just behind Kentucky commit and possible McDonald's All-American Jon Hood and above Miami RedHawk target C.J. Penny. Phares is also the top ranked power forward in his class. However, Phares may be the fourth option on his own high school team.

Scott County High School in Georgetown, Kentucky (near Lexington) recently accepted two highly touted transfers from Rose Hill Christian. These two transfers, Dakota Euton and Chad Jackson, are the two top ranked players in the strong Kentucky class of 2010. Euton has already committed to UK, and Jackson is reportedly being recruited by the traditional elite of college basketball: Indiana, Kentucky, Louisville, North Carolina, as well as West Virginia and Xavier. 2010 guard Ge'lawn Guyn is another Scott County product who is reportedly receiving interest from Kentucky, Dartmouth, Western Kentucky, Penn St., Wake Forest, and Xavier.

A recent ruling by Kentucky's high school governing body declared Euton and Jackson ineligible for next season. Phares indicated that decision is being appealed. If Euton and Jackson win their appeals, Scott County will not only be the preseason favorite to win the Kentucky state title, it will be one of the top teams in the nation.

Phares explained, "If we get Dakota and Chad we will be pretty good off. (We will be) ahead of everyone else for votes to win the state championship."

RedHawk Insider spoke with Phares at Miami's Elite Camp to discuss his play and recruitment.

Personally, Phares describes himself as "a pretty cool guy" who likes hanging out and being a normal teenager who does his homework.

As for his game, Phares was a little more descriptive. Phares compares himself to Tyson Chandler in that he has "great athletics and can play on the floor." He said, "I am a pretty good shooter, pretty good at ball handling skills, pretty athletic."

Although he is listed as post player that is not necessarily what he will play in college. "I can work on ball handling a little more if I want to play the wing in college which I am looking to do. And get bigger in the weight room," Phares said. He added, "I am in the gym everyday getting 400 shots with Dakota, Chad, and Ge'lawn working hard to be good next year."

At this point, Phares' only offer is from NAIA Georgetown (KY) College in his hometown. He is looking to pick up NCAA Division I scholarship offers. He will have an opportunity to showcase himself to coaches in the coming weeks as his AAU team, Derek Smith All Stars (West), travels west to tournaments in Los Angeles and Las Vegas.

Phares listed the schools that he is interested in, "Miami (OH) mostly. Kent State and Western Kentucky. South Carolina has been calling a little bit. Murray State and some little ones." Of those schools, Phares has taken unofficial visits to Miami, Kent State, and Western Kentucky.

Phares spent only 30 minutes on Kent's campus and did not get to see much. However, in that time he came away impressed with the Golden Flashes lockerroom and gymnasium. Phares added, "I might go back to Kent with my family because they did not get a chance to go up there with me."

On his visit to Western Kentucky, Phares said he liked the campus and locker room. Also, Phares stated, "the practice facility is really nice too."

Phares took his unofficial visit to Miami in early June and came away impressed. "I liked it a lot. I liked this campus, facilities, coaches, and players. I liked everything about it."

Miami, Kent, and Western Kentucky are his top three. When asked which one is the leader, Phares responded, "Miami is pretty much ahead and then Western and Kent State are there too."

Miami currently has a Scott County High School connection. Miami sophomore guard Rodney Haddix is a 2007 Scott County graduate. Phares talked about his relationship with Haddix, "I know Rodney real well. Me and Rodney are pretty close. I have known him since middle school. We talk a lot. We got a lot of things in common."

Phares plans on making a college decision sometime before basketball season starts. Until then, RedHawk Insider will follow Phares' recruitment.


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