Nike: Vernon Macklin Spotlight

INDIANAPOLIS – Rising junior Vernon Macklin is used to dealing with high expectations. The 6-foot-9, 205-pounder from Norcom High School in Portsmouth, Va., is returning for his second year at the Nike All-American Camp at IUPUI. Macklin said he is ready to showcase his considerable talents this week.

"I'm better at playing on the wing this year," Macklin said. "I think I can take the big guys outside and inside on the smaller guys. I want to play a combination of inside and outside.

"I like Kevin Garnett's game. He can dribble, shoot, pass and rebound (for the Minnesota Timberwolves)."

Macklin said he wants to go to college with Boo Williams AAU teammate Stefan Welsh, who hails from Newport News, Va., and attends Woodside High School.

"Me and Stefan want to be a package deal," Macklin said. "We have it narrowed down to Maryland, North Carolina and Wake Forest. I like the coaches and how the teams all run the floor.

"I like how Carolina gets into transition and how they run their offense."

Macklin has always dreamed of playing college basketball in the ACC.

"My whole motivation is to play in the ACC," Macklin said.

Macklin and Welsh have high hopes for the rest of the summer. They will play in the Nike Peach Jam in Augusta, Ga., and AAU Nationals in Orlando, Fla.

"I want to win the Peach Jam and nationals," Macklin said. "If we work hard for that, we'll win some games. I'm ready to play, no matter who I'll match up against."

He has already had an impressive summer, with some strong showings at the USA Development Festival last month, following by some eye-popping stat totals last week against solid competition in a local summer league.

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