Sunday, August 30, 2009

Corey Chandler

In case folks did not know, I heard from a coach on Saturday afternoon who informed me Corey Chandler will attend Binghamton. Great move by Corey because he will step right into a starting spot in two seasons and average around 20 points a game for 2 years. And for folks who do not know, Binghamton is one of the top academic colleges in America with some serious fan support in a beautiful 5000 plus seat on campus arena.

I just knew everyone would know by now but maybe not!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Weekend Tidbits

The Washburns

So it looks as if Chris Wasburn has returned! Yes, the two young men I met at the Boost Mobile what ever you can call it are rumored to be the sons of Chris Washburn, formerly the number 1 HS player in America and a guy Howie Garfinkel at the time called the best ever at 5 Star Camp. We do know they are attending St. Patrick's this season. I am confused about who they are staying with because I did not see Chris at the game I attended. Dave Britton, former Texas A&M Star, was doing all the intros. But if Chris is indeed moving to a new job in Elizabeth, I say good for him and boy is he lucky because alot of local folks are unemployed and looking for jobs. Chris must have some great skills to get a transfer from Texas or Hickory, NC where I thought he was living to land a new job so far away from where he was.
I guess if it is true, the power of HS sports is larger than having a great resume. I am a Kevin Boyle fan but wonder if some St. Pats friend did not hook this up. UMMMMMMMMM! It will be good to see Chris if he is coming this way. Yes, I know him and he even spent many days with me when he was about to turn pro. So his sons can play very well I hear! LOLOLOLOLOLOL.

**** Update ****
Chris Washburn is the Dad of the two players attending St. Patrick's. However he is no longer with the Mom and David Britton is calling most of the shots from what I understand. However Chris is involved and even coaches AAU in Texas so you know he understands what is going on. Dave is very connected and another former player I worked with. So I will wait for the real scoop that will come later. As for the kids, I hear the older one is very talented but needs more fire. The younger one could develop into a stud like his dad was. If these kids are good a certain BE School located in NJ with a name that rhymes with ball will have a great chance based on recent developments other places and the relationship, true relationship, David has with the coaches at the school that rhymes with ball lol.


The debate over HS recruiting has gone on for some time. St. Pats gets alot of it while folks tend to not talk about St. Anthony's or St. Benedict's. St. Anthony's has survived without of the area kids for quite some time. And St. Benedict's, though not in the reg NJ HS league, has done the same. Kevin gets killed for what others are doing all the time. Even Paterson Catholic. Heck many of the better PC players live nowhere near Paterson Catholic. Ditto with the football program at St. Joe's of Montvalle and Bergen Catholic. Their players come from NYS, all over Bergen County, and even a few from NYC including the ex NYC Mayors son, and parts of Essex County. How do you stop it? By really making these type of programs play in a super conference similar to the New England Prep A and B leagues. And please do not tell me these kids are just showing up the first day of school.

No one can say the recruited kids are not in GREAT HANDS, because they are. But it still is an unfair advantage. We will never see a Tournament of Champion final with Delbarton vs Toms River South.

Corey Chandler

Well, very soon we will know Corey Chandlers destination. I have an idea where but I will wait and let those who love to be first with information to announce it. Both final schools have alot to offer him. But what he needs most is structure, a sense of feeling very wanted and needed, and an opportunity to be away, but not so far he cannot get home to see family. I just hope he knows and understands it is better to be loved than just wanted and needed for basketball. This choice is the last one! NO MISTAKES!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Boost Mobile, Rutgers, Chandler, and St. Patrick's

Boost Mobile Elite 24

Before talking about the actual game here are my behind the scenes observations.

What a Friday in New York City! It was just like the old Rucker Tournament days where games often started late with the crowd really into the games. Problem with this event was the organization of the event made the Rucker and every other outdoor league in the NY Tri-State area seem like they are run by the NBA in comparison. Needless to say it was one of the most unorganized events I have ever seen (I have seen many events as a planner, participant, and observer) in all my years of watching and coordinating events.

It pains me to say this but I always try to keep it real. This has nothing to do with the great talent that would eventually be on display after a 2 to 3 hour delay. Some said it was Karma based on the snub on New York City with zero players participating from NYC high schools. Others were just scratching their head wondering who really was in charge? Come on Boost Mobile! ESPN! Sponsors galore including Red Bull! Wow!

Let start with the difficulty getting into the game with more VIP and Press credentials including Photographer credentials hanging on hundreds of people who really do nothing but get into games and eat free this way. Young guys 14 had on press credentials and VIP badges. Who were/are those folks. Do they at least write on message boards? It seemed like the SOS with a who you know situation over riding what you do. Even the caterer, who must have cooked from a kitchen in a home, was not prepared. You would have thought the food was from the 4 Seasons the way they made you wait with one Women not even affiliated running people away saying "Not Yet, Not Yet, Not Yet." I will say there were a few folks really attempting to make the very extended families of the participating players feel comfortable. They went out of their way to make sure they and others had what they needed. Many people I know who do this for a living would jump at such an opportunity to do this the right way.

In regard to the game, the rain put a serious damper on the event and had everyone hoping and praying for the weather to clear. It was odd that a game of this magnitude, with TV Crews, Newspapers, and 24 players with professional potential on hand from all over America and Canada, had a rain site in a small warm gym in the Bronx a short distance of 20 minutes away by car and maybe 30 minutes away by public transportation? Why would they not have a college gym on hold just in case it rains? Why would ESPN not have a small production crew on hand at a rain location just in case? Why with the weather forecast saying there would be thunder storms, would they not move the game to a college gym like Fordham, or Columbia, early in the day if for no other reason than player safety? Odd! Sad!

Well, after sitting through the rain delay where they even had some type of imitation tarp for the court that looked like a skit from comedy central as they attempted to lay it down, they finally made a public announcement that the game was being moved to "The Gaucho Gym." Now do not get me wrong, the Gaucho Gym is a nice facility for what they do. Nice new stands, nice floor, etc. But a game such as this needs to be in a nice college gym. And though it was a scheduled free event, by moving it to the Gaucho Gym, people had to pay $5.00 to be admitted. Why would Boost Mobile and ESPN not work this out ahead of time? It was to be a free event! Odd! Sad!

Well, the game finally was set to start hours later but at least we would see a game. Or at least that's what I thought. The player introductions for a game such as this should be a show in itself. Players names should be called with where they are from and what they have achieved thus far. Not this game. The announcer, Barbitto is his name I think, just called the names and he gave each player a pound and they never even went to center court with the exception of Austin Rivers, the talented son of Boston Celtics Coach Doc Rivers who was the first player called. The rest just stepped out and back into the huddle. Again no organization. Those kids should have ran to center court dribbling a ball, rolled the ball back to the bench and waited for the entire team to be introduced. Odd! Sad!

Enough of the negative, lets get to the game!

I wish I could say the game was great. Sorry I cannot because I left at half-time or around 10:30 or 11. I just could not take it much longer. This has nothing to do with what I have mentioned thus far or the facility. In fact the facility brought back great memories of guys like Fred Neal helping so many kids before passing, Rod Strickland, Stephon Marbury walking in with a real entourage, The Gaucho Roundball Classic where my son played and learned to compete, Ernest Brown, Bernard Borrows, Artie Green taking his team off the court and forfeiting the game despite being up 25because they would not listen, Dave McCoulough and Dave Jones coaching their butts off and developing players, the Twins volunteering and helping every kid they could. Yes the Gaucho gym was and is a great place for kids to play and learn. Back to the game. The game also seemed very unorganized and that might be because they had kids coaching kids.

Kevin Love and Brandon Jennings coached one team and Rajon Rondo and Tyreke Evens coached the other. Great players but young and not real coaches.....yet! Well, we know who won the game.....or do we? Or do we really care? The Skip to My Lou team defeated The Goat team 133 to 120. I am sure to many the game was very entertaining. To me it was in spurts. But truly it was a game to showcase skills and that is what the players did. I saw Brandon Jennings calling for clear-outs in the first quarter for Josh Selby from Baltimore and Oak Hill Academy who recently de-committed from Tennessee. But he was a true high light film in the first half. So was C. J. Leslie from Word of God in Raleigh North Carolina. For the opposing team I was very impressed with Tobias Harris who is much better than even his number 7 ESPN ranking. Doran Lamb, a NYC kid attending Oak Hill Academy showed he had game and must have did very well after I left based on him being CO MVP with Tobias Harris. But trust me when I tell you this was a true "Park Run" played indoors.

The Players

Austin Rivers
Great player with great potential despite looking soft off the court. Guy has GAME and will star at Florida!

C. J. Leslie
All I can say is watch out. Kid might dominate this season. Has all the tools and gets up and down the court with ease. Seems like he loves to play. Was a CO MVP

Corey Joseph
Did not really notice during the first half I was at game. Must have something to be in this game.

DaJuan Coleman
Did not score but this big body kid is only going to 10th grade. He seemed to have great footwork, etc. OK I am cheating and have seen him a few other times and know this was an off day for him. Looks just like a young but larger Derrick Coleman.

Dion Waiters
PLAYER! He will be outstanding for Life Center in NJ. I think this is a Job Corp facility so he will gain a skill and a high level scholarship.

Doran Lamb
I guess he was representing NYC despite playing HS ball for Oak Hill in Virginia. You could tell he has great skills. Number 33 on ESPN top 100? He will be much higher than that in the future. CO MVP of game as well.

Harrison Barrens
Word on the street is this kid who is Number 1 on the ESPN top 100 is a genius in the class room. He is from Ames Iowa which I am sure was a lesson to many of the participants who thought there were no people of color in that state. Nice to be brilliant with serious basketball skills. Number 1? Not sure. Top 10? Definitely!

Jared Sullinger
Big body and talented player. Think he is already an Ohio State commit. Hard for big guys in games like this. But you could tell this kid is the truth. Number 2 nationally? Not sure about this either but top 10-15 for sure!

Joe Jackson
Every so often a guard comes along that you hate watching. Such is the case with this shorter, not so fast, look to shoot first point guard. The first half that I saw he seemed very selfish, especially for a PG. If I was a player being recruited by a school offering this kid, I might turn that school down. But again I have not seen much of him. I could be wrong. I hope I am.

Josh Selby
Mr. Excitement. This guy was the show during the first half. He would have been the real ticket at Tennessee in that Bruce Pearl system. He has to be careful and attend a school that allows creativity. But this guy could be worth the price of admission. Wow. CO MVP

Kendall Marshall
Do not be fooled by his 2 points. This is a true PG who makes everyone around him better. I could score 10 points playing with him. Great potential and a true leader on the court.

Kyrie Irving
Looked like a little boy face wise along with Austin Rivers. But when he played he was all business as he got to the hoop when he wanted to. This is a case of a kid who would take your money at Venice Beach on the courts. He looks like such a nice young 15 year old kid. But he plays the game as if he is on a mission. Another outstanding student with outstanding basketball ability!

Myck Kabongo
Another Canada kid via Ro Russell. Has game and performed well. Makes St. Benedict's strong again. Will he keep his Texas Commitment?

Perry Ellis
I hear from my guy Jon Cano this kid was Kansas player of the year as a 9th grader. He comes from a great HS that also produced a number of outstanding college players. And if you have never been to Wichita Kansas, you might not understand how close it is to areas we know that has great basketball. Was a bit lost on court but will be a factor in HS for many years.

Phil Pressey
Any relation to Paul Pressey? Not sure lol. But I looked forward to seeing this kid play. Had decent stats but again this was an All Star game and everyone cannot shine.

Rakeem Christmas
The Future in the Philly area. This kid is a baller. have seen him a few time and though this was not a great performance, it was a solid one.

Roscoe Smith
Very few young men have the name Roscoe. That's a name from the past. Well, Roscoe might have an old man's name but he has a game that is great right now. Had a solid 22 in the game and we will hear more from him in the near future. Roscoe? Wow!

Terrence Jones
Another kid I did not watch close enough. But he did score 8 points. Being from Portland Oregon, I am sure he gets his share of Nike.

Tobias Harris
The 2009-2010 version of Tobias Harris is much improved believe it or not. The old version was very impressive as well. This kid is slimmer, quicker, aggressive, with many tools. He looks like a future pro as does many of the participants. As I told his Dad, Tobias is efficient with his game which makes him a true star. Plus he is a true team player. I think Grant Hill when watching him. Was CO MVP

Tony Wroten Jr.
Seems like he has been around for 10 years lol. This kid is skilled and has a nice feel for the game. He will make some college coach and his future teammates very pleased.

Tritan Thomas
Yet another Canadian in this game via Ro Russell. Might have been a package deal. I love Tristians potential but wish he was back at St. Benedict's learning and being pushed by Danny Hurley. He better get to work because after a year at Texas, he could be right near Canada at St. Bonaventure (No Knock on The Bonnies).

Will Barton
The name sounds like a player! Field goal by Will Barton!!!! Well, get ready because that's just what will be said because this kid gets buckets as they say. He is very impressive and would score even if he was going against NBA players.

As you can see the talent was on hand. Hopefully the game will again take place in NYC next season with better organization. Might be an isolated event because the other Boost Mobile Games held in NYC were outstanding!

More Rutgers

This should be the end of the Rutgers/Craig Carter/Corey Chandler issues. Spoke with a few people at the Boost Mobile event and they said all their phones were ringing off the hook. One prominent AAU guy said he also heard from Fred Hill who seems to be doing damage control. He mentioned Fred told him he would continuously rotate the coaches so Craig might just be in the road sometimes. He said he told Fred how bad this looks. Guy was definitely in Fred's corner but not pleased with what happened. Spoke with a Parent who mentioned he was not pleased at all because in his eyes Craig Carter is an outstanding role model for any kid whether they are Black, White, Latino, or Asian. I again say that I KNOW FRED HILL IS NOT RACIST and NEITHER IS RUTGERS UNIVERSITY!

Corey Chandler

The schools listed for Corey Chandler makes it seem he has limited options. Not the case! I spoke with 1 BE assistant who mentioned he wish they could get him but the rules makes it impossible. As far as I know, he has SMU, Siena, Maybe Kansas State, Binghamton, Iona is interested, St. Bonaventure, and more. I honestly feel he would be perfect at Binghamton replacing DJ Rivera and Tiki Mabry when they graduate this season. Corey could average 25 points a game in that sold out arena that holds 5400 fans.

St. Patrick's

Look for two very tall transfers from Texas to attend St. Patrick's this year. Saw them at Boost Mobile game. one of my ex Dyckman players and a great friend of Craig Carter gave me the 411 on this. Can the public schools ever compete with this? Well, at least they will be well coached!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

For Monday

On Monday I will give my thoughts on the Boost Mobile Elite 24. Stay tuned for some thoughts about the running of the event from catering to the actual game. It will not be a popular Blog Story!

I also will touch more on thoughts from the Rutgers situation based on what I heard at the Boost Mobile event including thoughts from some in the know AAU types and even a Parent or two.

Lastly I will give an update on Corey Chandler and TRUE schools interested in him.

Stay Tuned!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

New Thoughts

Just a short blog post to be clear about what I wrote yesterday. But before I do I just found out that Brigham Young does not have a Black Assistant this season despite all the work they do in third world countries. They join Rutgers as one of a handful that do not have true minority representation. But ALABAMA still has a HEAD COACH!

I have not spoken with Craig Carter or Corey Chandler. However I have spoken with many others very close to each of them including one of the Newark Eastside Coaches, and a very close advisor to many NY high school D1 prospects. I have also spoken to some D1 Assistants who are saying off the record that what has transpired at Rutgers is mind boggling. In fact, one assistant coach and a community coach in NYC mentioned to me even a prominent Big East Head Coach is shaking his head not only about what has happened recently, but what has happened all year. And in the last 6 minutes I recieved 2 calls from VERY CONNECTED AAU guys who said they could not reconmend a player attend Rutgers.....WOW! Very Connected!!!

Now all of this really pains me because I know Fred Hill is not anti Black, anti Italian, or anti Martian. Fred Hill really did not make this move based on race. Fred has been a strong supporter of equal opportunity during his years in basketball. That's why this move surprises everyone. He should have understood the impact his decision about Craig Carter would have made. This decision has the entire basketball community in NYC and NJ buzzing. Honestly, if the other coaches on the RU Staff really are in Fred Hills corner, they would have stepped up and took that coordinator position out of loyalty to the program understanding the long term impact.

Since this breaking news, the RU AD has received a number of phone calls from what I understand. My source on this is a Local D1 Assistant Coach that is very involved with the National Black Coaches Association. I understand from him, Fred Hill has returned a few calls to some of the folks who called the AD explaining how this new position is a great one with visibility for Craig lol. The Guy I spoke with says it is not just about Craig Carter, its about Rutgers University, a place that has always been for everyone regardless of where they are from, feeling they can just have the only all White coaching and recruiting staff in the Big East. He said folks are wondering if they are being taken for granted and disrespected. So yes they are upset over Craig, but more so over the lack of an experienced "real Coach" of color on the RU Staff.

Will this impact Rutgers recruiting? YES! RU might still get players with limited options. But unless they do it like some others via boosters, and special assistance, etc., the kids with options will list them but not really consider them. And as one person wrote, having a Black Assistant on staff does not guarantee you get certain players, but it makes sure you are in the race. Remember an Assistant Coach has to be able to get players to campus for visits, get the program in position for home visits, and stay in touch with recruits. THE HEAD COACH is the person who closes the deal. By the way John Calipari, Rick Pitino, Lou Carnesseca, Jay Wright, Paul Hewitt, Jamie Dixon, and many others could do a special workshop on this topic.

In conclusion I really think nothing will change at RU. The decision has been made. But I am sure if they could do it again it would be a different person other than Craig Carter chosen as the "Coordinator." I also think we live in a society where folks tend to have short and selective memory. Kids and advisors with few options will consider a school in the BE just because it is in the BE. But the great players who help you get to the NCAA's will always be reminded by knowledgeable people, and other D1 coaching staffs.

Corey Chandler

Who does the guy quoted as a Corey Chandler Advisor work for? The schools he listed are a put down to Corey's ability and skill level. Granted the timing is bad to get that great opportunity. But there must be schools in the CAA, A10, Lower ACC, Big 10, and SEC interested in him. Kansas State? Georgia? I would be stunned if he attended one of the schools mentioned by "The Advisor."

Boost Mobile Elite 24

Still attending this great event. I just hope it does not rain. But as the game takes place, I hope to get some juicy stuff to share here. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Rutgers Thoughts

Now everyone knew I would give my opinion on the Corey Chandler and Craig Carter situation. Well, the gloves are off and to be honest I have to say Fred Hill Jr. is the biggest surprise I have ever experienced in D1 basketball, and I happen to know alot of the main players and coaches and those I do not know, I know someone who does. Fred to me was nothing short of an OUTSTANDING Assistant Coach with great HC potential. What is happening with him? He is not the guy I knew from U of Maine, FDU, SHU, and Villanova. That Fred was sooooooooo Together. Deep down I hope the Fred I knew will re-emerge this season.

I start with Craig Carter. First my message to Craig who did more than most people realize to open doors in NYC for future RU recruiting. It is always up to the Assistant to start the recruiting process but the Head Coach always has to be a great closer. Unfortunately Craig opened many doors but the closer was not available or could not complete the deal in ways that make Jay Wright, Lou Carnesseca, and even Bobby Gonzalez famous. From what I am told by a few folks in Brooklyn, Craig had Ebanks signed sealed and delivered but he and his family did not feel love from remainder of the RU Staff. Craig is an outstanding ambassador for RU now and forever. My message to Craig would be keep your head up, remain loyal to FHJ and RU, and keep your eye on future prizes such as jobs where you will be appreciated.

Honestly this move will hurt Rutgers more than they realize. What Rutgers really has right now is a superb Camp Staff as in The Hoop Group! Not a bad thing since the Hoop Group is an outstanding organization doing great things. Just not a great staff for a high major D1 program. Plus not having a QUALIFIED Person of Color on staff will eliminate them right off the bat for a number of high profile players they were in contention for. Trust me they do not need to attend another event involving Tobias Harris since he was only interested in Rutgers based on Craig Carter. I will say the same thing about other kids. I spoke with a number of NYC HS Coaches who are very upset over the treatment Craig has received. They might still shake hands with RU coaches and even smile, but getting NY players just got very, very, hard! Not just because of Craig, but because of the lack of an assistant coach of color on the road recruiting.

Lets look at the new RU Coach. I am sure he is a nice man and pretty good with the x and o's. But what does a 61 year old guy say to the hip hop generation... "Peace?" 61year old guys do deserve opportunities as well and this guy should have gotten the Coordinators job for this season. But should have never been given Craig's position.

I am really stunned Fred Hill would so disrespectful to the African American community in the tri-state area by having an all white coaching staff in the year 2009! What is he saying at a time even Brigham Young has a Black Assistant Coach and The University of Alabama has a Black Head Coach? Is he just giving up? Does he feel he is so connected with The Playez, Panthers, New Heights, Metro Hawks, and Road Runners among others that he can just eliminate minority involvement on his coaching staff? What is the University's take on this in the year 2009? What is the AD saying? How about the President? Maybe they are just allowing Fred Hill to dig his own grave and already have a contract for a certain coach in upstate NY prepared for 2010.

Speaking of the NJ Road Runners. Lets see what Sandy Python (sp) does with the dismissal of Corey Chandler. Will FHJ and his new Assistant from Lehigh be able to recruit their players? What about the coaches in Newark especially those at Newark Eastside? Was Corey a true bad apple or was it convenient to get rid of him to eliminate a PG controversy between him and Beatty regarding playing time.

If Corey is guilty of anything similar to what Reggie Redding did at Villanova, he also should have been suspended the first half of the season. But to be thrown off the team after being the poster boy as a 12th grader and College sophomore? ODD! Who hangs with Corey at RU? Who is always with him? thats right, most people know.

Rutgers needs to be good for area College Basketball to be interesting. Ditto St. Johns and Seton Hall. Unfortunately today Rutgers took 2 steps backwards and told everyone pulling for them to take a hike!!!!!!! And that's saying how I feel mildly.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Interesting Tidbits

Good Morning everyone. Its a new week and I am really looking forward to the Boost Mobile Elite 24 scheduled for this Friday, August 22, at Rucker Park in Harlem, NY. What an event it will be with young men from all over the country playing a HS All-star game in the Mecca. Playing in Rucker Park means these young men will have to bring their game and not just their name (IS8 Saying). I plan on being there as early as 5 PM to take the entire event in. By the way this is a free event so people need to arrive early to get a seat!

Nice seeing Jason Morris being recruited by so many schools. Still remember his Dad Phil making All City at Columbus HS in the Bronx. Jason is a legit HS All American candidate in more ways than 1. Very good student at a REAL New England Prep School that also has some of the wealthiest students in the world attending. Yes, he attends Hotchkis School which is coached by one of my former players at Dyckman, Fred Benjamin, a guy I was sure was going to the NBA. Well, Fred has done a great job with this young man who has the super high majors recruiting him as well as the Ivy's. But I think I know where he will attend and it is ,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,! Will tell later!

Just found out that Rutgers Patrick Jackson is the grand Son of the legendary Tony Jackson, who was one of the best players ever produced on NYC. TJ with the sweet J did his thing when he played HS ball and College ball at St. Johns if I remember correctly. Great genes!

Thinking about HS I must talk Gary Deceaser. Look for Gary to be outstanding at the Illinois HS he will be coaching this season. Call him names, hate him, etc. But one thing for sure, he runs a great HS program and LOOKS OUT FOR HIS KIDS. I am the first to say he has a hard tome recruiting local players on the college level based on burning bridges years ago by being truthful and honest with his feelings about how certain AAU type programs were being run. He also received pressure by really not allowing his players to be taken advantage of by college coaches recruiting them. He was 100% involved with every kid being recruited on the D1, D2, and D3 level! He and Danny Hurley seem very similar as coaches to me. That's why I always say My Grandson Logan would play for Danny Hurley if he is still a HS coach and not a college HC at the time if I have any say lol. I always felt the same way about Gary DeCaeser who you knew had your kids best interest at heart. a few others in this category are: Bob Hurley. Moe Hicks, Johnny Mathis at NY Kennedy, Ruth Lovelace at Boys and Girls, Tiny Morton at Lincoln, Curtis March at Teaneck, Bob Commino The Mount Vernon Coach, Kevin Boyle, Ron Neclerio at NYC Cardoza,and The Don Bosco Coach of Bergen County even though.......

Lets talk in code for a moment. Spoke with a great NYC source who told me the reason certain young men have chosen to leave the area is because they could not get certain requests from area coaches that they could from those out of the area. He named schools, coaches, and players. I was stunned! But not surprised! What a shame because these young men do not realize the dangers they face as well as the hardships. Playing locally where you live, pays off huge unless you plan on relocating to the area you attend college when your eligibility is up. I say it that way because very few basketball players graduate in only 4 years. If basketball is in your future for 10 years after playing your last game than it might work. If you get injured or do not have the career you expected it will be a different story. Sad because St. Johns, Seton Hall, and Rutgers are great options! In fact SJU could be huge if folks just believed! I do and watch this team and Seton Hall do much better this season. Seton Hall is expected to do well. SJU will be a surprise! Could not happen to a better person than Norm Roberts.

Heard that Tobias Harris lives on the same block as Norm Roberts on The Island. Wow! Also heard Harris is often at SJU shooting around in the gym with his Dad. Again I say Wow! So why is SJU not in the picture for Tobias? Or are they? I do know one very influential person to Tobias dad Torrel and that person loves Norm Roberts and Paul Hewitt. Stay tuned!

Sad story about 7 ft Marcos Lewis in Virginia. I hear he wants to give up basketball because the kids tease him about his height. He is very embarrassed. A few folks have called him with words of encouragement. One day he is through and the next day he is not. By the way Marcos is a Sophomore or Junior in HS. He might just wind up in a NE Prep school in the future. If he does.......Watch out!

I am going to say something and I hope folks do not take it wrong. Some of the local bigger D1 schools are doing it the correct way recruiting wise and by the way student athletes are treated. If you dig deep enough you might just realize what has actually happened around the NY Tri State area. It is so easy to see! Some schools will never get the great HS studs because certain kids tend to always be up for bid! Just the way it is! This is one of the reasons players like Tobias Harris, Kyrie Irving, Austin Rivers and Jason Morris are so attractive. They are NOT up for bid and only want basketball scholarships despite being good enough to receive special offers. This means all schools have a chance or had a chance since most know where they are going or have a list by now. This does not mean others are not looking for the same. Heck maybe they all just want room, board, tuition, and fees. I hope so!

Lastly I talked to someone who said a certain super players Dad is so bad they wish parents such as myself were still around lol. Now if you knew me when my son played you would better understand the comment. I was out of control and a true embarrassment. I should do a workshop for parents based on what I did and went through. Free of course. Someone contact me lol.

Well, the parent in question needs defending I feel. Yes, he can tone it down. Yes, he should not be so involved if he is not coaching. But when you are an ex player it is hard watching your son play without offering words from the stands. Person will learn to channel his emotions differently I am sure. But this person is a great dad who truly made his son the great player he is today with no ones assistance. take a bow Dad, than relax and enjoy the ride.

Theo Davis, Theo Davis, Theo Davis, Where are You? This is a kid who was pulled and pulled and sent all over and now where is he? Hopefully he has it together even though he was never the player people thought he was. Many high schools and a few colleges later he is at still another college or is he? Check out his story and use it to guide and advise young men. By the way his Advisor Ro Russell takes alot of hits from people. But Ro, who I have never met, seems to have done alot more GOOD than bad with his Grassroots Canada basketball program. Many kids have benefited!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

I Am Back!!!!

I have always said I would not comment just to comment. I have also said I would try to write more than what I read in regular newspapers. It is for those reasons along with a commitment to my small business operation that has had me traveling alot recently that I have not posted. Well I am back and will post regularly from this point on.

Lets start with parental and Travel team/advisor involvement with recruited players. Now anyone who knows me will agree that I was a terrible basketball parent lol. But I did realize it was about my child and not about me. I could teach a course on the do's and don'ts of advising HS basketball players. In that spirit please allow me to talk about a few things that get under my skin.

Lets start with the "WE" terminology used by many parents and adviser's. What do they mean "WE"? Ever hear the AAU Coach or even parent say things like "We hope to have our list down by" or "We will be visiting the following schools" ? Crazy! WE? When did it become WE? "WE hope to choose our location by" or "We hope to have a decision by" are other ways players folks and adviser's speak.

I think all those mentioned have a serious say, but its about the player and they should be a resource as opposed to making it about themselves.

Lets talk recruiting. Why is everyone so surprised about Coach Thomas doing a great job attracting players to a mid major at best school in Florida? Is it any different than Jim Valvano getting studs to attend Iona? These kids are looking for one and done situations. Where best to shine than a non power conference school coached by an NBA legend with connections. Plus we all know that school is doing all they can to win and draw fans based on the hiring of Coach Thomas. lastly many folks know when a school wants to win bad enough they will do ANYTHING to attract good players. So to get a GREAT Player the sky is the limit I am sure. If you know what I mean!

Lets also look at the power schools and the advantage they still have with resources, booster support, money to spend, etc. It will always be hard to beat out Kentucky, NC, Duke, UCLA (years ago), Kansas, etc. Syracuse could easily be in this category but it is no longer for some strange reason. Or is it really a strange issue lol?

The power schools can afford to be everywhere. They have corporate jets at their disposal as well as a full staff of recruitment people including IT specialists etc.
It is no longer about graduation rates and available jobs after graduation. It is about instant gratification. Kids want it now in more ways than one.

Lets talk Danny Nee to Towson. Or should we? Or do we really care? I do! And why is he doing this? I guess he cannot get coaching out of his system. But Towson? That's a job for new coaches looking to break in after coaching HS or JC ball. Wow!

Lets talk Mike Davis. Are you kidding me? Coastal Carolina? OK Cliff Ellis is a draw but if I remember right they have a 2000 seat gym and play in a very low level conference. I really thought Mike would attend Kansas State who I heard had a real interest in him as a transfer. Might have been better off being a role guy at Seton Hall.........If they had pushed for him to stay.

My gut says St. Johns will be one of the country's biggest surprise teams this season. They might not win the BE, but they should make a post season tournament.

My Gut says Seton Hall will be very good and make the NCAA this season if they play as a team and compete night in and night out.

My gut says Rutgers will be better but still not good enough to draw more fans or make a post season tournament. It will be an interesting year to say the least.

My gut says Siena College will be very good and the coach will depart after this season. He will be following a few teams very closely.

Lets talk Tobias Harris. I look forward to watching him play in the Boost Elite event at Rucker Park in a few weeks. Sat with him at last years event and he was clearly disappointed not to be selected for the game as we watched. But one thing for sure. Tobias would be successful with or without basketball. He just happens to be a great prospect! Funny thing is I happen to know a certain gentleman who his dad Torrel respects alot that could be of assistance. Hint Hint....Guy is an urban legend and around 70 years old! Which is why Georgia Tech rumor was not a surprise. Guy in question loves Paul Hewitt. But Torrel and Tobias know what they are doing.

More Later

Friday, August 7, 2009

I Am Back!!!

Been a while since I have written anything. But I am back with alot to share. Check me out starting Monday. I am going to talk Parents and Advisors and a few rumors. Stay tuned!