We'll begin with Mayo, who came into the game against Harris second in the camp in scoring and is the consensus No. 1 player in the land in the Class of 2007.
However, Mayo more than met his match with the physical Harris, who was right up in Mayo nearly everywhere he went throughout the entire game.
Harris' offense wasn't anything special, but it was one of the top defensive efforts seen at the ABCD Camp in recent memory. Mayo was 1-of-10 and finished with just two points in the game, an overtime victory which was won by Bill Walker's 3-pointer after Mayo had misfired on four successive attempts from long range.
Harris managed 13 points on 4-of-12 shooting from the field and the Niagara Falls High (N.Y.) senior guard added five boards.
Mayo appeared frustrated throughout the game after meeting his match physically in Harris. Mayo was unable to get past Harris and get into the lane – and he was also unable to free himself for open looks from the perimeter. It was the second time this week that Mayo appeared rattled. The first time came when the crowd took the side of rising freshman New Yorker Lance Stephenson, but this one was different because Mayo was completely shut down against Harris.
While Walker managed to knock down the game-winner, he was anything but spectacular. He was 5-of-13 for 13 points, including a couple of dunks, a putback, a layup and a pair of free throws.
The star of the game was actually Daniel Hackett, who led all scorers with 18 points. While Hackett doesn't possess tremendous athleticism, he played with the court intelligence that is usually displayed by Mayo.
In the featured bout, we're going to give Oden the slight edge over Caracter – although the New Jersey native came back strong and nearly earned a draw.
Oden did what he always does – he did plenty of work in the paint and never strayed from what makes him the top player in the land. The 7-footer used power moves in the paint, out-finessed Caracter – and also helped lead his team to an easy victory.
Caracter pressed early and tried to match Oden's inside tenacity, but was unable to score in the low-post and decided to take his game on the perimeter, where he knocked down a pair of trifectas.
Caracter played well, but he needs to learn how to better utilize his rotund body to create space against a guy like Oden.
Caracter finished with 13 points and four boards while Oden had 12 points and four rebounds. However, the final score was – Oden: 79, Caracter 54.
Paul Harris, G: To reiterate, he's the toughest kid in camp. Period. He also put up one of the most impressive defensive performances in recent memory by holding O.J. Mayo to just one field goal – and two points. His outside shot is the only thing holding him back right now.
Greg Oden, C: He's starting to put some separation between himself and the No. 2 player in the country, Kevin Durant. There's really no one in the nation – at least not at this level – who's able to hold him in check. If he wanted to, he could score 20-plus points every time out.
Darnell Gant, PF: The relatively unknown long and slender big man from Crenshaw High in California rebounds well and runs the floor.
Herb Pope, PF: Jamie Dixon and the Panthers have to smile every time they watch this kid. He plays with a ton of energy and has really impressed the entire week. Rebounds, hustles and just needs to work on his mid-range jumper.
Corey Stokes, SG: This kid is big-time – and he can really score from just about anywhere. His outside shot is pretty and he is also able to bully his way to the bucket and finish with his strength.
Alex Tyus, PF: He'll be one of the most pursued kids in the Class of 2007 because of his athleticism and energy. He's always around the ball – and just plain gets it done.
Devin Ebanks, PF: The long, athletic future wing continues to impress this week. He can knock down shots from the perimeter and despite his lanky frame, he also puts work in the paint.
Zach Graham, SG-SF: The Peachtree Ridge High wing has been scoring consistently throughout the week. He attacks the basket well and can knock down the mid-range jumper, but he'll need to display a better perimeter shot.
Brandon Jennings, PG: Could be the purest point guard in the camp. All his teammates love him because he plays with poise and looks to get everyone else involved before looking for his own shot.
Drew Gordon, PF: Jennings isn't the only California kid in the class to impress. Gordon, a late addition to the camp, continues to shine. He's getting by on effort, running the court well and also finishing shots in the paint. Scored 12 points and had 10 boards in the afternoon session.
Renardo Sidney, WF: The Mississippi youngster has been overshadowed somewhat by Lance Stephenson, but Sidney has played well. He's long, athletic and is extremely versatile. Has done a nice job of mixing things up inside and has rebounded well throughout the camp.
NEWS & NOTES
Derrick Caracter said he's down to Louisville and Memphis, although numerous local media reports have speculated he could end up at Rutgers. … Darnell Gant lists UCLA, Arizona, Washington, Louisville and Stanford. … Perry Stevenson said that Kentucky, Georgia Tech, LSU and Texas Tech remain on his list while UConn is a new addition after Huskies hard-working assistant Tom Moore recently made an inquiry. … Jerry Davon-Jefferson is debating between Stoneridge Prep (Calif.) and Mount Zion. He also said that USC and UCLA and 1-2 on his college list while Oklahoma State, Kansas and Louisville are also in the mix. … One-time Tennessee pledge Tyler Smith is headed to Hargrave next season. … Keenan Ellis is originally from Kentucky and would like to play at either Kentucky or Indiana. The other two schools he mentioned are Louisville and Florida A&M. … Bryan Davis' list remains the same: Georgia Tech, Kansas, North Carolina, Texas, Texas A&M and UConn. … Tom Herzog is the best shot-blocker in the camp at 2.7 blocks per contest. … Phil Nelson is hitting 57 percent of his 3-pointers.