Archive | July, 2013

Cass Tech’s Laster Talks First Offer from BGSU

30 Jul

Mike_LasterDetroit Cass Tech rising senior Mike Laster has seen his recruiting gain more attention during the July Live Period. Laster, a 6’4″ wing and shooting guard, played for the Reach Legends AAU team, traveling to some of nation’s prestigious grassroots basketball tournaments. And it was at the Las Vegas Fab 48 where Mike received his first division one offer coming from the Falcons of Bowling Green.

“It feels good that they want me to come play with them” Laster said on the Bowling Green offer. “Its location and how close it is to home” is what Mikes likes about the school.

Laster has emerged as a much more dependable offensive player in the Summer compared to his junior high school season at Cass Tech. He has the rare mid-range jumper that is a forgotten art these days and can still shoot from three-point land, to go along with nice size, length, and athleticism for a division one wing prospect. He has also added aggressiveness and playmaking ability to his game, with improving ball handling and defensive skills.

Mike is also being recruited Southern Illinois, Youngstown State, Cleveland State, Bucknell, Northeastern and plans to take visits to Florida Atlantic and IPFW. Laster said he wants “A good program that develops it’s players well.” And “Somewhere where I’ll be in a good situation.

Follow me on Twitter: @mdhsathletics

Follow Mike on Twitter: @MikeLaster_24

Spiece GRBA National’s Day 3 Notes

28 Jul

A few standouts before championship Sunday at GRBA Nationals in Fort Wayne Indiana.

Deshaun Thrower ACB Bankhoops 5’11” 190 lbs PG- Most now him for being a quarterback for the state-finalist Muskegon Big Red football team, but many do not know that he has talents on the court.  When it comes to hoops, he brings out his football toughness and skills as an advantage.  He can lower his shoulder, and use his explosive quickness to get around weaker defenders and get into the lane.  Another area I like of Thrower’s is his pull-up game, whether it be from three point land or mid-range he needs to be accounted for when coming down in transition.  Plays hard on both sides of the ball and is one of Michigan’s underrated point guard prospects in the class of 2014.

Bronson Kessinger Spiece Indy Heat 2015 6’7″ 180 lbs SF/PF-  Bronson is simply put an explosive athlete.  Playing against a 17U team in tournament play, Kessinger went up and brought the entire court down with a one handed power slam over a defender.  He played hard at both ends of the court, rebounding and playing down low in the post.  Could turn into a nice pick-and-pop wing with a improving jumper.  Has a majority of low to mid-major interest, but that can and will change by the time high school season comes along.

Xavier Simpson King James Shooting Stars 15u 5’9″ PG- Simpson played with his fellow King James Shooting Stars against a 16u team in Platinum play and was not phased at all playing older opponents.  Many young guards would be scared to run the ball on the break against older and bigger guards, but not Simpson.  Xavier always pushed the ball when he had the opportunity either creating for himself or his teammates.  In the second half when Nashville decided to go zone, Simpson quickly spotted the adjustment and was making picture perfect dimes.  But what stood out to me more was the fact that he plays bigger than his size would indicate.  Not afraid to take and make big shots.  Plays with heart.

Henry Baddley King James Shooting Stars 15u 6’3″ Wing-  Another member of King James’ deep class of 2016.  Baddely is a long athletic wing that excels in space and getting to the basket.  Has nice bounce and athleticism on put backs and lay ins.  It will be scary to see the day when his jump shot matches his driving abilities.

Mahir “Baby Earl” Williams Young and Reckless 15u 5’10” PG- Although Mahir has not played in a high school game yet, the future Proviso East Pirate has the savy and poise to one day blossom into a star.  In one game against the heavily favored Illinois Wolves 15u, Williams put the team on his back scoring a game high 19 points leading Young and Reckless to the victory.  Mahir played defense that resulted in a few easy run out opportunities, scored in a variety of ways, and rarely made a bad decision when it came to passing.  He is a rare willing passer these days when it comes to point guards.  With a some growth and weight gain, he could be a very well known prospect in a few years.

Follow me on Twitter: @mdhsathletics

 

 

 

Interview with Algevon Eichelberger

27 Jul

It is easy to forget elite players in Michigan’s class of 2016 when they are overshadowed by a top ten nationally ranked player.  However, nobody should ever overlook Saginaw 6’6″ forward Algevon Eichelberger.  Algevon took the state by surprise last year by becoming one of the best shot blockers in Michigan, as a freshman.  Eichelberger has nice footwork and techniques that are unfamiliar for most big men and low post players at such a young age.  He is the definition of a blue collar worker, fighting for rebounds on both sides of the ball until he hears a whistle or has the it.  On the offensive side of the ball, Algevon in AAU has shown soft hands, and improving mobility compared to the high school season.  2-3 more inches in growth would do wonders for Eichelberger and make him a national prospect by the time senior year comes along.

Canadian Import Munis Tutu

24 Jul

SONY DSCCanada might be known for Hockey, but the sport of basketball is on the rise for our northern neighbors.  The country has quietly produced some of the top basketball prospects for the NCAA over the past few years.  Andrew Wiggins, Myck Kabongo, Nik Stauskas, and Melvin Ejim can all trace their beginnings to Canada.  However, there is a new 2015 prospect eager to make a name for himself to be mentioned in the same sentence with those aforementioned.  6’0″ 160 pound point guard Munis Tutu has had a long journey to get where he is today, and that is being one of the nations best up-and-coming 2015 guards.

A native of Egypt, Munis moved to Canada when he was just nine months old.  But at the age of three, his father bought Munis a basketball net, and it was love at first sight.  Tutu later went on to star at J.L. Forster High School in Windsor  for two years.  In his first season of high school, he made the city all-star game to go along with a 20-1 record.  But season two was where Munis started to make a name for himself, he averaged 24 points and seven assists per game, including a 47 point outing.  However, last Summer, competing in the Team Boldt of Canada for AAU, Munis decided to transfer to La Lumiere after being spotted by head coach Alan Huss at the Best Buy Chicago tournament.  La Lumiere is one of the nation’s top high school basketball programs in the country located in Indiana, which produces division one players every year.  “I felt it was a great place to help me focus on academics” said Munis, “and play high-level basketball.”

Playing in the Nike EYBL with The Family (MI) for Munis has helped him grow a lot as a player in the Summer.  “It helped me to see what I have to work on, and what my weaknesses are.”  The Family qualified for Peach Jam in the 16u level, but were unable to win a game in the tournament.  But overall Munis enjoyed the Summer,  “With how it went this year, it shows I can play with the best of them [players in the country].”

This Summer, Munis has seen his college recruiting reach new levels.  Tutu currently has offers from the likes of Binghamton, Detroit, UMass, Kent State, and Charleston, with high interest from Iowa State, Auburn and Butler.  “For college, I want to go to a school where I will be most comfortable and will go in, play and make an impact.”  Education will also play a role in choosing a school, as Munis would one day like to pursue a career in the medicine field.

As far as a skill set is concerned, what Munis brings to the table is a point guard that will give you good energy offensively and defensively, and good vision and basketball IQ.  Another part that Munis has added to his game is his shot.  “My shooting is also what I added to my game and what will make me more dangerous on the court.”

Expectations will once again be high at La Lumiere, especially when you have the backcourt composed of Tutu, JoJo Anderson, and incoming transfer and fellow class of 2015 guard Jalen Coleman, who already has high-major offers.  After playing behind senior Jalen James, who latter went on to commit to San Jose State,  Munis wants to make a splash for his second season of American basketball.  “I hope this year I can be recognized as one of the top point guards in the country, try and win the [high school] national championship of course, and be the #1 team in the country.

Bridges to Transfer to Huntington Prep

22 Jul

milesbridgesIt is easy to get overlooked in the State of Michigan’s 2016 basketball rankings when there is a top ten nationally ranked player in the class, Josh Jackson.  But former Flint Southwestern star wing Miles Bridges has all the pieces needed to be a nationally ranked recruit by the time his high school career is over.  However, Bridges has decided to enter a new chapter of his life.  Recently deciding to transfer to Huntington Prep in West Virginia to finish high school.

Miles is not the first to leave Flint for a prep school.  Kyle Kuzma, now at Rise Academy (PA) hails from Flintown, but also current USF guard Javontae Hawkins, who went on the average 18 points and four rebounds a game for Huntington in his lone season there, left Flint Powers Catholic after his junior year to attend Huntington Prep, and that had an impact on Miles.  “If it wasn’t for him” states Miles, “they wouldn’t know about me.”

Schools would be crazy not to know who Miles Bridges is, the lefty has torn up AAU this Summer with the Michigan Mustangs, ultimately receiving an Oakland offer in June.  Bridges is a very intriguing player.  He can play outside with on the perimeter with superior height and strength compared to guards, but also is a big body down low that can rebound and block shots.  Schools like Indiana, Iowa State, and Michigan State have all took notice of Miles.  But Miles has a couple of dream schools he’d love to play for, particularly the Kansas Jayhawks and Indiana Hoosiers.

Huntington is a top ten nationally ranked school in the country for basketball, alumni include Minnesota Timberwolves draft pick Gorgui Dieng, and the class of 2013’s number one ranked player Andrew Wiggins.  Miles is excited and anxious to become part of the Huntington family, “It means a lot that I could possibly be getting taught by the same coaches who taught the number one player in the nation.”  Miles will be on varsity as soon as he gets, and should improve as an all around player before the season starts.

Sumner to Compete in Nike Global Challenge

17 Jul

sumnerThe Nike EYBL finals finished up with Each One Teach One winning the 2013 Peach Jam in South Carolina, but that doesn’t mean that Nike is done putting together quality high school hoops action. The Nike Global Challenge, held at Trinity Washington University July 18-20, will feature some of the top talent not only in the country, but also the world.  Four Regional USA teams, East, West, Midwest, and South, will challenge each other and four international teams from Africa, France, Brazil, and Canada.  All of the players competing for the Americans, compete in the EYBL, a Nike sponsored grassroots basketball league.  The EYBL has only one team from the State of Michigan, The Family, and one player from the team was selected to attend this event, Detroit Country Day 2014 point guard and Xavier commit Edmond Sumner.

Edmond, by whom many agree is the number one point guard prospect in the state, has had a very successful past year of basketball.  Edmond and his fellow Country Day Yellowjackets captured the 2012-2013 Class B title in the State of Michigan, and the ninth for former head coach Kurt Keener.  Sumner averaged 16 points per game, six assists, and three rebounds for the entire season.  But life only got better for Sumner from there on, because on the twelfth of May, Edmond decided to commit to Xavier, a decision that had been between either the Musketeers or the Minutemen of UMass.

But don’t think with all of the success that Sumner was going to lay down during the AAU Circuit with The Family this Spring.  The 6’3″ 160 pound point guard in 18 games with The Family, led the team in scoring with 14 points per game, tied for first in steals with 15, and was the leader in assists dishing out a total of 69.  Edmond is known for his quick bursts of energy, allowing him to get past defenders and to the basket with ease.  But the EYBL for AAU tends to help athletes in all levels of their respective game.  And Sumner agrees, stating, “I matured as a point guard, trying to perfect the pick-and-roll, improving consistency from three-point line, and mid-range and strength.”

Many know the prestigious annual high school all-star games that are televised on national television, such as the Jordan Brand Classic and the McDonalds All-American Game.  Although it might not attract as much attention as those mentioned above, these very games serve as a prequel to those respective events.  Top ranked players such as Jahlil Okafor, Tyus Jones, and Cliff Alexander, who are almost locks to participate in the aforementioned,  will of be on the same midwest team as Sumner.    Notable players that will be competing against Sumner will be D’Angelo Russell, Devin Booker, and Isaiah Briscoe, who are all coveted by high major programs in college.  But don’t think Sumner is a throw in to play in this type of game.  Sumner competed against all of them in the Nike EYBL regular season, four long sessions of probably the most intense high school basketball that can be found in the country.  Players respect Edmond’s game, he states that he deserves to be regarded as one of the top prospects in the country, saying that “I already did [prove I am] in the EYBL, that’s how I earned the respect from the players.”

Not too many athletes can say that they have the chance to represent their country, and still be in high school.  Nike is no doubt an iconic world brand.  From all around the world, you will see their famous logo on clothing.  But there is something more too Nike than just apparel, it is the committment they have made to amateur athletes, not only in the United States, but also the world, to compete against fellow elite prospects ultimately making them better on the court, but also in life.  For Edmond, “Getting a chance to play against the best players in the world” is a once in a lifetime experience.  And is thankful for the EYBL because “It [has] helped a lot, because playing in the EYBL for two years, playing the best competitions in the country showed me what I have to improve on before college so I can be successful.”

Follow me on Twitter: @mdhsathletics

Follow Edmond on Twitter: @TF_32

Live Period Underway

12 Jul

AAU USA LogoThe Live Period for high school hoops across the country is now in full swing.  What that means is that colleges from any level, not just division two or three, can attend AAU games.  As we all know, the State of Michigan will once again be packed with basketball talent for the upcoming 2014-2016 classes, and these very players will be participating in some of the country’s most prestigious tournaments, with nationally ranked AAU teams and players serving as opponents.  From games in South Carolina, all the way to Nevada, Michigan players will be putting their talents on display in order to receive attention from college coaches, with the dream of receiving scholarships.  The following events are all NCAA Certified, and some of the top colleges in the country will be on hand to take in some high school basketball.

Nike EYBL Peach Jam (July 9-14) North Augusta, South Carolina

Next Level Invitational  (July 10-14) Mequon, Wisconsin

2013 Adidas Invitational (July 10-14) Indianapolis, Indiana

Under Armour Summer Jam (July 17-21) Mequon,Wisconsin

Brawl for the Ball (July 18-21) Grand Rapids, Michigan

Crossroads Challenge (18-21) Fishers, Indiana

Hall of Fame Invitational (July 19-21) Springfield, Massachussets

Fab 48 (July 25-28) Las Vegas,  Nevada

GRBA National Championships (July 25-28) Ft. Wayne, Indiana

Interview with Jeron Rogers

10 Jul

Jeron Rogers is a 6’7″ 195″ wing forward who attends North Farmington High School, and competes for the Michigan Warriors AAU team.  Jeron is a matchup nightmare for opposing teams.  He is too tall to put a smaller guard on him, but he is too quick to put a bigger post defender on him.  Jeron already has offers from the likes of Toledo and Oakland.  But has Michigan State, Iowa State, and Xavier very interested in his skills.

Catching up with Justin Tillman

8 Jul

 Justin, a member of the Reach Legends AAU Team, has seen his basketball recruitment blow up over the last couple of months.  The Pershing forward holds eight division one offers as of now, most of them being mid-major schools.  But Justin has also caught the eye of programs like Michigan State and Iowa State.  Justin will no doubt haul in more offers during the Live Period during the month of July.  In this interview, Justin discusses how the June Team Camps went, skills as a player, and recruiting.

July Tune Up Recap

8 Jul

hypeThe July Tune Up held at Hype athletic center in Dearborn Heights served as a warmup for AAU teams before the July live period that begins next week and runs through the remainder of the month, a period where coaches can attend AAU games.  With that being said, many of the players the participated in this event will  be sure to have a few coaches watching their games in the next few weeks.  Now is the time where we separate the contenders and pretenders for college offers.

Justin Tillman 6’7″ 200 lbs (Reach 17U)– Justin showed us why he is one of the top recruited prospects from the State of Michigan this weekend, again.  What fans, opponents, and scouts know when they see Justin play is that he is going to play hard on both sides of the court.  Whether that be blocking multiple shots on one possession on defense and still getting the rebound, or creating second and third chances on the offensive glass.  The bottom line was that he was too athletic for anyone to handle and was hands down the best player in the gym.

Mike Laster 6’4″ Wing (Reach 17U)– Did a little bit of everything for the Reach Legends.  Scored, hit perimeter jump shots, got to the basket, and rebounded.  One of the more underrated wings in the C/O 2014.

Tyron Hamby 6’0″ 165 lbs PG (Reach 17U)–  Really one of the more underrated point guards in the State of Michigan.  If he was at any school other than Romulus he would most likely have a few offers as of now.  What stood out at this tournament was Hamby’s defense.  Whether it was making a nice anticpation off a pass, or just outwilling the opponent for the ball, Hamby got the ball and it resulted in nice and easy breakaway points for Reach.

Nick Perkins 6’6″ Forward (The Program Elite 16U)– Continuing on a great Summer that resulted in a Toledo offer, Milan forward Nick Perkins has soared to perhaps a top ten ranking in Class of 2015.  Nick is a big, strong physical post presence that uses strength to carve out space down low for rebounds and post position.  Willing passer that makes good decisions to find shooters on the perimeter.  But on defense, Nick changed shots and made it hard just to get shots up.

Trishton Jackson 6’1″ Combo Guard (Reach Legends 15U)–  Tristan is a very talented offensive player that can score the ball.  In one game, playing the Michigan Warriors 16U team, Jackson went off for 26 points and single-handedly kept his team in the game.  It was a combination of three-pointers, and finishing through contact at the basket.  Trishton is up there with the top sophomores for next year and should have a breakout season next year at West Bloomfield.

Jeron Rogers 6’7″ Wing (Michigan Warriors 16U)–  Jeron made the switch from Reach Legends to the Michigan Warriors this Summer, but nothing has changed about his game.  Jeron is a matchup nightmare for defenders.  Put a taller defender on him and he will use his quickness to get to basket, but put a smaller defender on him he’ll go to the post and shoot a fade-away jump shot.  Good scorer that runs the floor well, and a jump shot that can be extended to the perimeter.  Will be a high major target one day.

Tyler Johnson SG (Reach)– Nice pickup for Reach Legends.  In the first tournament this Summer, Johnson was unstoppable from beyond the arch.  Tyler was hitting three’s on kick backs from post players, or dribbling up the court and stopping at the top of the key.  Should pick up some nice interest during the live period.

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