2005 West Coast Rankings: Centers

Prospects <b>Brayden Bell</b>, <b>Amir Johnson</b>, <b>Jeff Pendergraph</b>, <b>Coby Leavitt</b> and <b>Artem Wallace</b> are among the top centers in the west for 2005...

The position of center in the west for 2005 has a decent number of prospects, but lacks elite talent. Johnson is far and away the top prospect. A great shot-blocker, Johnson has all the physical tools to be an elite player. He's a very good athlete, with a long frame, and very good feet. Consistent effort and focus are the areas where he needs to improve. After a bad spring due to poor conditioning, Wallace got himself into shape and had a very good summer. He's more skilled than most people realize, with the ability to knock down shots from the perimeter and underrated passing ability. He's got a very good frame and should be able to add plenty of muscle in the next couple years. It's possible he ends up playing the four someday at Washington. Leavitt has made great strides in the last year. He's got a nice shot to about 17 feet and he's very active. He's on the slender side, but he should be able to add weight in college. We like his aggressiveness and believe he could be one of the sleepers in this class. Bell has the best offensive skills of any center in the west. He's got a big body and should be pretty strong in a few years. Like Johnson, he needs to work on focus and giving a consistent effort. Pendergraph is a good rebounder and defender, with a developing offensive game. He moves well and should fill out nicely.

UCLA is looking at Brayden Bell, Coby Leavitt and Sam Warren.

1) Amir Johnson, 6-9, Los Angeles (Calif.) Verbum Dei
2) Artem Wallace, 6-8, Toledo (Wash.) High
3) Coby Leavitt, 6-9, Washington (Utah) Snow Canyon
4) Brayden Bell, 6-9, Salt Lake City (Utah) Brighton
5) Jeffrey Pendergraph, 6-8, Etiwanda (Calif.) High
6) Jordan Wilkes, 6-11, Los Angeles (Calif.) Loyola
7) Sam Warren, 6-9, Englewood (Col.) Cherry Creek
8) Chris Oakes, 6-8, Oakland (Calif.) Castlemont
9) Jessie Byrd, 6-8, Oakland (Calif.) Bishop O'Dowd
10) John Bryant, 6-10, Pinole (Calif.) Pinole Valley

Other Centers Of Note:

James Anderson, 6-10, Page (Ariz.) High
Daniel Faris, 6-8, Albuquerque (New Mexico) Eldorado
Brandon Moore, 6-8, Spanaway (Wash.) Bethel
Vincent Barney, 6-8, Safford (Ariz.) High
Eric Van Vliet 6-8, Santa Cruz (Calif.) High
Omar Samhan, 6-10, San Ramon Valley (Calif.) High
Rodney Aguillar, 6-10, Los Angeles (Calif.) Marshall
Ike Okoye, 6-8, Roseville (Calif.) Woodcreek
Micah Hamilton, 6-10, Los Angeles (Calif.) Verbum Dei
AJ Maulhardt, 6-7, Ojai (Calif.) Nordhoff


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