McDonald's Practice Insider: Day 1

COLUMBUS, Ohio – North Carolina's signee trio took the court Sunday afternoon for the first day of practice at McDonald's All-American game week.

After arriving Saturday evening, the McDonald's festivities officially got under way Sunday morning when the 24 men's basketball players traveled to a local Ronald McDonald house.

Shortly after a quick lunch, the two teams took a short drive from downtown Columbus to Ohio State's campus. The practices began with 15 minutes of stretching from camp trainer Alen Stein, before the two squads separated into practice.

Practice Notes:

* Since seeing Harrison Barnes in mid-November, he's visibly put on muscle mass. Standing 6-foot-8, the nation's top prospect is getting stronger and has spent some serious time focusing on his body.

His added strength helped him immediately at the McDonald's practices. A versatile guy that can play the two, three or four if asked, Barnes was forced to defend Terrence Jones, Tristan Thompson and even Patric Young at times during practice.

* Although the West squad didn't scrimmage nearly as much as the East, Barnes' team did do some full court drills. Perhaps Barnes' best play of the day was a steal in the half court that led to him pulling up after running full speed for a 18-foot jumper.

* This year's field is full of talented guards. On the East squad alone there are two lead guards in's top 10. With that said, Kendall Marshall will spend a lot of time playing with another floor general. During his squad's 15-minute scrimmage, Marshall played next to Josh Selby and was guarding Duke signee Kyrie Irving.

* During the East's scrimmage, the 6-foot-4 Marshall had a few highlight plays. Arguably his best move was a drive down the lane where he faked a pass and layed it up. He also made a great dish in the open court and knocked down a spot-up three-pointer from the corner.

* While Barnes and Marshall had their moments, Reggie Bullock struggled to get his jump shot going during the scrimmage. He missed a trio of three-pointers, but did score four points -- one off a cut on a fast break, the other was a floater in transition.

* The East team is quite an athletic bunch. From Joe Jackson to Josh Selby at the guard spots and C.J. Leslie and Perry Jones in the post, this group should be fun to watch, especially when they push the break.

* While the East team has more athletes, the West squad is full of better shooters, especially from the guard spot. Brandon Knight, Cory Joseph, Doron Lamb, Keith Appling and Barnes are all knock down shooters.

* Barnes and Irving have apparently built quite a relationship. Despite heading to rival schools the two have been hanging out quite a bit together and are roommates. When polled on who the best player in the 2010 class is, Barnes replied, "Kyrie Irving."

* Monday's itinerary includes a morning practice sessions and then in the evening will be the three-point, dunk and skill contests. Barnes and Marshall will be in the skills, while Bullock is scheduled to be in the three-point. The events will take place at the Value City Arena at 7:30 (ET) and will be televised live on ESPN2

Harrison Barnes Sounds Off:

What are your thoughts on the McDonald's festivities so far?
"I think it's a great experience to be playing against the top players in the nation."

What did you think of the practice overall?
"They were real competitive today. We brought a lot of energy."

What were your thoughts on the high school season?
"It was great. We won back-to-back state championships."

Did you live up to your expectations for your senior season?
"I thought I did a good job this year. I accomplished a lot of goals that I wanted to, like winning state and the national player of the year award. So far it's going well. Hopefully I can play well in the McDonald's game."

Inside Carolina Top Stories