Looking At More Southern Invitational Participants

David Hall checks in with his thoughts on other prospects from the Southern Invitational this weekend including Will Bowers, Brian Johnson, Linas Lekavicius, Ricky Lucas, Wesley Green, Mike Nardi, Artie Bowers, and Mustafa Shakur.

In addition to Wake targets Luol Deng, Will Sheridan and Wayne Marshall, there were several other players in action this weekend who are targets of other ACC schools, a couple of whom might end up being Wake targets as well. Here are some brief thoughts on a few of them.

Will Bowers 6-10 C Baltimore Select - This big man is a prime target for Maryland. Has excellent size, but not a lot of athleticism. Seemed to disappear when the flow of the game picked up. The tools are there to make an impact, especially in a halfcourt setting, but he needs to step up the intensity.

Brian Johnson 6-10 C DC Blue Devils (class of 2004) - Hard to believe this guy will be playing high school basketball for two more years. Great size and athleticism, and a polished all-around game. UNC is the leader for his services.

Linas Lekavicius 6-0 PG Diaper Dans - Plays defense as if his life depends on it. Looking at his build you would guess he's being recruited to wrestle in college, not play basketball. Lots of bounce. Right now he relies on athleticism, but he'll need to continue refining the finesse side of things in his offense to make it as a bigtime college PG. State is interested and UNC is thinking about recruiting him. Probably no longer a Wake target after Chris Paul's commitment.

Ricky Lucas 6-4 SG Fairfax Stars - His athleticism makes it difficult for defenders to keep him away from the basket. Has lots of quickness and hops. Needs more consistency with his jumper. NC State is on his list.

Wesley Green 6-9 C Florida Hoopsters - Has a great deal of offensive skill. Other big men had trouble defending him, as he likes to get the ball around the free throw line where he is equally adept at putting the ball on the floor or hitting the jumper. Can start the fast break with accurate outlet passes. Needs to lose some weight and get in better shape. Rumors persist that his attitude is questionable. Wake and UNC have shown some interest.

Mike Nardi 6-2 PG Jersey Demons - He could win a Steve Blake look-alike contest, and has a similar playing style. Not a spectacular offensive player, but will hit the jumper if left open. Makes good decisions in transition. Hard-nosed competitor. State is in the running with several Big East schools.

Artie Bowers 6-3 SG Tim Thomas Playaz Black - Pure shooting stroke from beyond the 3-point line. Quick release forces defenses to focus constant attention on him. Not as much of a threat when he has to put the ball on the floor. Nothing spectacular on defense. Wake and Maryland have both shown a lot of interest.

Mustafa Shakur 6-3 PG Hunting Park Warriors - The best PG I have seen from the class of 2003. Polished offensive game allows him to score in a variety of ways, from 3-pointers in a defender's face to crossover moves through defenders all the way to the basket. Long and wiry, he can adjust in traffic and convert when drawing contact. Good ballhandler who can also find the open teammate. Adequate defender. Has a long list of possible schools that currently includes NC State, Maryland, UVa and Georgia Tech.


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