RU Targets '09 Sharpshooter

The Rutgers basketball program is on the lookout for players that can really stroke it, and one young man they've zeroed in on is a DC native now going to school in New Hampshire. Just a junior, he doesn't yet start for the loaded prep program he plays for, but that hasn't stopped a host of programs from recruiting him already. Where does RU stand with one of the nation's deadliest shooters?

"He's our best perimeter shooter by far. He's definitely our best three point shooter", said Jason Smith, head coach of prep powerhouse Brewster Academy, about his 6'7" junior forward Givon Crump. Smith went on, "I don't have the stats in front of me, but I think he's got to be over 50% from three. He's definitely a high major shooter".

The fact that Crump can rank head and shoulders over anyone else on his team in perimeter offensive skills says a lot. The New Hampshire school, according to Smith, has eleven Division 1 players on its roster, and according to the schools website (which you can check out here), has sent 30 players to Division 1 programs over the last 4 years. Among the high-major recruits on the current squad are Emmanuel Negedu (Arizona), Anthony Crater (Ohio St.), and Mark Lyons (Xavier).

Smith stated that he'll most likely expect Crump to start next year, and stated that "I expect big things from him next year. He could be the main contributor". He added that "A lot of college coaches don't do their homework. They see a guy playing 10-15 minutes a game, and don't think he can be that good". Apparently there are also many that do, as Crump currently has offers from Providence, Rhode Island, Iowa St., Nebraska, and SMU.

Another coach that has also done his homework is Rutgers assistant Craig Carter. "Coach Carter is a cool guy", said Givon. "I really enjoy speaking with him. Most of his conversations have been with my dad. It's been very positive", he said. As for Rutgers, he said,"I feel good about RU. It's a place where I can play". Since he is originally from Washington, DC, he stated that "It would be nice to stay on the east coast".

He added though that right now he is not leaning toward any particular school, stating that "My options are completely open. I'm still learning the recruiting process. It's still new to me". He also added that he has no timetable set, and is not looking to make a decision anytime soon. "I'm not sure when it will be", he said. He said that when the school year ends, he will go home for a short while, and then will head out to Arizona where his father lives. He'll play his AAU ball this summer with the Arizona Magic.

Coach Smith stated that the areas where Givon has room for improvement are on the defensive end, where he can get better moving laterally and covering people on the perimeter. He said that "Right now defensively he's kind of caught in between being a wing and a power forward, but he's made significant progress". Coach Smith also said that there's also room to grow as far as Givon's ball-handling skills are concerned.

About this, Givon said "Right now I'm expected to shoot, but I think I can take people off the dribble. There's always room for improvement". He said he's also expected to grab rebounds, adding "I love fighting for rebounds". He said his assignment in a game could range from guarding bigger guys to checking someone who's 6' foot. It doesn't matter to him, as he said, "It's all about winning".

Givon said he was at Rutgers in the summer of '06 for the elite camp, and that "I would love to come out again". It would certainly seem like a very good idea to have him out again. Coach Smith said: "He's a wonderful young man. He has tremendous character and work ethic, and he's very well-respected by the faculty and his peers".

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