Sunday, May 11, 2008

Bruin Recruiting: Prep News Roundup (5/12)

By Bruin Basketball Report

Prep News Roundup is published every Monday.


I found not one but two reports confirming that several players from the Southland have been invited to attend tryouts for the USA under-18 national team, a group scheduled to compete in the 2008 FIBA Americas U18 Championship in Argentina on July 14-18. Malcolm Lee of Riverside North, Campbell Hall's Jrue Holiday, Compton Dominguez's Jordan Hamilton and Loyola's Hollis Thompson are four of the 20 athletes competing for a dozen roster spots at the tryouts, taking place July 1-4 at Georgetown. Training camp is set for July 4-10. UCLA-commits Drew Gordon of Archbishop Mitty and Reeves Nelson of Modesto Christian were also invited. LA Times 5/7

FINAL RANKINGS: Harrington's Top 100 for the Class of 2008: Yet another Californian, combo guard Jrue Holiday, gives the Golden State a clean sweep of the top three positions. Some scouts on the West Coast regard Holiday as the No. 1 player in the state, in this case equaling the top overall prospect in the senior class, and his superlative senior year certainly gives that argument credence. USA Today 5/10


J'Mison Morgan’s mother, Bianca Morgan, said Tuesday that she has submitted paperwork to the LSU athletic department seeking a release from the letter of intent and scholarship agreement her son signed last November. That letter of intent is binding according to NCAA rules, meaning LSU could deny Morgan’s request. If LSU chooses to do so, Morgan could either withdraw his request, attend LSU and play or opt to go to another school and sit out a year. Regardless of how things turn out, Bianca Morgan said her son’s decision is final, an about-face from late April when Morgan and South Oak Cliff High School coach James Mays said the player was LSU-bound after an in-person meeting with new Tigers coach Trent Johnson on April 22. The Advocate 5/7

Trent Johnson, speaking before the kickoff Tiger Tour event at the Alexandria Riverfront Center, said he planned to talk late Wednesday night or this morning to 6-foot-10 center J'Mison Morgan of Dallas in the wake of Wednesday's report that his mother is seeking a release from the letter of intent and scholarship agreement her son signed last November. "When I was at the (South Oak Cliff) high school and visited with the coach and the kid, and when I went into his home (two weeks ago), he said he wanted to come here," Johnson said. The Advertiser 5/8

Johnson is also being patient with LSU signee J'Mison "BoBo" Morgan, a 6-foot-10, 275-pound forward/center from South Oak Cliff High in Dallas who is the jewel of the Tigers' incoming recruiting class signed by Brady and Pierre. The class, which includes three others, is ranked 18th in the nation by Morgan is considered the No. 4 center in the nation and No. 25 prospect overall by, but his mother Bianca Morgan has said she no longer wants her son to go to LSU. UCLA is now in the hunt as Morgan recently told the Dallas Morning News that he felt the Bruins would provide "a better fit for me as far as exposure." Johnson said he still has a chance at keeping Morgan. Shreveport Times 5/9

Tyler Lamb is one of the most complete players in the class of 2010. He may not be superb in any facet of his game but he is very good at just about everything. Lamb is thought to be leaning towards UCLA but currently does not have an offer. GoAZCats 5/7

With the way basketball recruiting is nowdays, it's never too early to start keeping tabs on kids from the Southland. Everyone else is, namely NCAA Division I scouts. And Tyler Lamb is a great example, considering the sophomore from Colony is one of the nation's hottest prospects among the 2010 class. USC has offered a scholarship, according to this report. Another major player is UCLA. Seemingly every other PAC-10 school has expressed some level of interest. Can't forget to mention that Georgetown, Louisville, Memphis and Tennessee are keeping a watchful eye on Lamb too. With all the attention from schools across the country, it's hard to believe he's only a 10th-grader. We're talking about a youngster who has two more years of high school ball. If the gifted underclassman continues to improve, Lamb could end up at the college of his choosing by the time he's a senior. LA Times 5/9

Michael Snaer (6-5, 195), Junior, Moreno Valley, Calif./ Rancho Verde: Snaer has taken his game to another level this spring. His frame has slimmed down some, and as a result he has become more explosive, especially on the offensive glass. He is a solid all-around player. For his AAU team (Inland) he is playing point guard. But at the next level, he'll strictly be a 2-guard. He handles the ball well -- although his left hand needs some polishing -- and he has a quick first step to the basket. The biggest improvement of his game is his shooting. His jump shot appears to be less flat and his release is quick. He had a tendency at times to hunt shots and force the action, which lead to his being turnover prone. But overall he has definitely been one of the better performers at both ends of the court this spring. ESPN 5/7

Renardo Sidney (6-9, 245), Junior, Los Angeles/ Fairfax: Renardo Sidney needs to focus on his interior play to excel at the next level. Although his team (LA Dream) lost both of its pool play games, Sidney was by far the most physically dominating prospect this weekend. His frame is that of an NBA power forward -- with broad shoulders and long arms -- but he doesn't take advantage of it nearly enough. He can handle and pass the ball with equal aplomb, especially in transition. In addition, he has a solid stroke out to 22 feet. However, he settles for jump shots far too often and doesn't dominate the interior -- at either end -- as much as he should. Although he may envision himself as an NBA wing-type, he is simply becoming too big for that to happen. Sidney needs to continue to work on his face-up, 4-man skills and develop more skill and savvy in the post to reach his potential. At this level, he can get away with trying to be LeBron James, but at the next level and beyond he'll have to adjust to become more like Chris Webber. ESPN 5/7

Jeremy Tyler (6-9, 240), Sophomore, San Diego: After watching Tyler dominate the Cactus Classic last spring as a freshman, it's simply amazing how much his overall skills, fundamentals, explosiveness and savvy have taken a significant step backward in terms of development. He is still blessed with an incredible frame with some of the longest arms I've seen on a prospect, but overall he has become one of the most talked about enigmas on the West Coast. Tyler did have some moments of brilliance and gave a few glimpses of the vast potential he possesses. However, his fundamentals -- he has a tendency to brings the ball down the court in traffic -- and overall skills -- he really needs to develop a jump hook -- have diminished from a year go. He used to be able to hit the 15-foot jump shot off the glass with regularity, but I haven't seen him take or convert that shot in more than six months. In addition, he used to rebound, using both hands, with a sense of urgency and be quite the ferocious dunker in traffic, but he didn't display that type of explosiveness this weekend. In the grand scheme of things, he is only a sophomore with a lot of pressure on his shoulders and two more years of maturity to rely on. But his development -- both from a mental and physical standpoint -- is going to be one of the more interesting stories to follow in the coming years. ESPN 5/7

Cactus Classic: Avery Bradley (Northwest Panthers)- Bradley spent a lot of time on the bench after picking up some early fouls guarding Wall, but he came alive in the second half to spur the Panthers to their comeback win. Scoring on pull up jumpers and explosive assaults on the rim, Bradley finished with 16 points. He also displayed his defensive prowess, making Wall struggle to find driving lanes down the stretch of the game. The one disappointing area of Bradley's performance is that he didn't come up with a rebound in the game. Nonetheless, this spring Bradley has established himself as one of the top shooting guards in the country and a candidate for five-star status. Gator Bait 5/10

Cactus Classic: Jordan Hamilton (Team Odom)- Playing an unselfish and poised game, Hamilton set the tone for his team with his strong rebounding and timely passing. More than just a scorer, Hamilton has a great feel for the game and the physique and skill level to make a variety of plays. And although his focus wasn't scoring, he still put up 22 points. Gator Bait 5/10

Cactus Classic: Although many observers expect Renardo Sidney to stay in Los Angeles for college, the skilled power forward has been expanding his school list lately. Saturday he mentioned Arizona State, USC, UCLA, Texas, Kansas and Memphis as schools of interest. He also added another school to the top of his list. Evidently impressed by his surroundings in Tucson, Sidney spoke glowingly about Arizona. "I'm really liking Arizona right now," Sidney said. "The gym is off the chain, and I got to walk around campus the other night and it's just crazy. I'm planning on coming back down in a month or so for a visit." Sidney's play in this event has been has been less than stellar. His squad LA Dream Team was bounced out of the event in its first bracket game with Sidney averaging 12.5 points per game and 6.8 rebounds per game. Immensely skilled, Sidney hasn't been able to fully tap into his abilities this weekend because of poor physical conditioning and emotional instability on the court. For Sidney to remain at the top of his class, and more importantly, for Sidney to become the player he is capable of becoming, he most stop being his own worse enemy. Gator Bait 5/11

(photo credit: The Advertiser)



At May 12, 2008, 1:15:00 AM, Anonymous BruinFan said...

Let him go Trent...the young kid does not want to be better recognize!

At May 12, 2008, 2:48:00 AM, Anonymous jake said...

What is YOUR wish list for the 2009 class?
I would expect a healthy number of recruits since we will be losing 5 to graduation (Collison/Shipp/Roll/Aboya & Mbah a Moute) and at the moment have just penned one recruit in Reeves Nelson.

At May 12, 2008, 6:55:00 AM, Anonymous 1&done said...

Hey BBR,
Here's my wish list that includes Reeves "Man of Steel" Nelson for 2009.
1. Renardo Sydney 6-9 PF
2. Lance Stephenson 6-5 small fwd
3. Daniel Orton 6-9 C
4. Elijah Johnson 6-1 PG
5. Endless supply of Sierra Nevada

At May 12, 2008, 7:22:00 AM, Anonymous Bruin Basketball Repot said...

Not a wish list... since there are some players more talented but not listed:
Reeves Nelson
Brendan Lane
Anthony Stover
Avery Bradley

At May 12, 2008, 7:55:00 AM, Anonymous Don said...

Any thoughts where we are with Avery Bradley? This kid will be a stud!
Jake, you see Bradley in person yet?

At May 12, 2008, 10:37:00 AM, Anonymous jake said...

Ha ha ... I don't see EVERYONE play. But - really that is about the only way you can get an idea on a kids demeanor and play without the ball that you don't see on any given youtube highlight reel. For example everybody knows that Jordan Hamilton has some amazing skills but not exactly a fit into the Howland defensive first system (in my opinion).
And no ... haven't seen Avery Bradley play but he does seem to be impressing many top programs.

At May 12, 2008, 3:39:00 PM, Anonymous jake said...

Thanks BBR for your wish list.
I've overlooked Anthony Stover a bit ... I figured staying with the California connection that perhaps Greg Smith out of Fresno was waiting for an offer or to see what happens with Sidney - I guess there is a bit of a pecking order. Stover is a bit taller/thinner than Smith. Perhaps it even depends on Morgan getting released as well.

At May 12, 2008, 3:39:00 PM, Anonymous AjKaz11 said...

Just saw this on Bruinzone...
Morgan let out of LSU!!!

At May 12, 2008, 4:51:00 PM, Anonymous BruinFan said...

nachos, brews are pouring, party in Vegas, party at Westwood Brew Co....I hope that is not a false alarm...Morgan sign the letter tomorrow....
Awww yeah....fingers crossed....

At May 12, 2008, 7:31:00 PM, Anonymous Bee said...

Bee's wishlist:
1. Derrick Favors, PF 6'9" (dreaming, I know)
2. Xavier Henry, SG 6'6"
3. Daniel Orton, C 6'10"
4. Brendan Lane, SF 6'9"
5. Anthony Stover, PF 6'9"
6. Elijah Johnson, PG 6'2"
If Malcolm Lee and Jerime Anderson stick around, height wouldn't be a problem with this team!
BTW, anyone notice that Kendall Williams is not doing well at all in the Arizona Cactus Classic? Ugh.

At May 13, 2008, 3:20:00 AM, Anonymous RD said...

Lets get this in writing and get to it. next years team will be very deep and should be fun to watch

At May 13, 2008, 5:39:00 AM, Anonymous 1&done said...

Hey BBR,
Is yesterday's fox report accurate about LSU releasing Morgan from his LOI this afternoon? Do you think "Bobo" will be a bruin this week? What's your gut feeling bro?

At May 13, 2008, 6:12:00 AM, Anonymous Pto said...

It's official, LSU made an announcement that he's being let out of his LOI. His mom says he's going to UCLA, but no word from Morgan himself.

At May 13, 2008, 6:37:00 AM, Anonymous 1&done said...

Thanks Pto! I just saw it on! I knew Howland had something up his sleeve. It's time to come to Westwood "Bobo"!

At May 13, 2008, 7:34:00 AM, Anonymous Brew In said...

Here is the article for LSU:
BATON ROUGE -- LSU men’s basketball coach Trent Johnson announced on Tuesday that he has granted signee J’Mison “Bobo” Morgan a release from his national letter of intent that he signed with the Tigers in November 2007.
Morgan is from Dallas, Texas and played at South Oak Cliff High School.
“The bottom line with me will always be that I want players here who want to play for LSU,” Johnson said. “There is some closure with this decision, but no player will ever be bigger than the program.”
Good man Trent, you did the honorable thing! Get that cheese heated up for those nachos BruinFan, I'm already chillin' the brewzzzzzzz!

At May 13, 2008, 8:48:00 AM, Anonymous BruinFan said...

Morgan - COME TO chicks, and I'll line up endorsement deals....
You can get on tv 30 times next year....
Awwww yeah.....DING DING DING....

At May 13, 2008, 11:13:00 AM, Anonymous DB said...

Let us not count our eggs before it is hatched. Even with Morgan on board, in a one and out playoff anything can happen. Let us just celebrate and cheer for our team game after game and let the players decide if they are going to bring a banner home.
Sure expectations are high, but let us just savior a great incoming recruiting class that if stayed together for 2-3 years can really do great things.
The good thing I see about this coming class is that they seem to be pretty good players but not one and done ones so we have some time to build a solid foundation for years.

At May 13, 2008, 11:16:00 AM, Anonymous Bare Gunner said...

Good points DB, we can't hang a banner until we can cut down some nets!
But believe me BruinFan and Brew In, those suds and nachos are sounding really good right about now!

At May 13, 2008, 11:23:00 AM, Anonymous Bare Gunner said...

Good points DB, we can't hang a banner until we can cut down some nets!
But believe me BruinFan and Brew In, those suds and nachos are sounding really good right about now!

At May 13, 2008, 11:46:00 AM, Anonymous Rob said...

BB: I agree. Jordan Farmar recently said that the best you can do is put yourself in a position to win the whole thing. Making the final four is doing just that. Kansas may be the champion, but like most who actually win the tournament, they needed some luck. My wish is to see the players grow and learn under Howland, improve throughout the year, win the regular season Pac-10 championship, win the PAC-10 tournament, get a #1 seed, and at least make it to the final four. That's asking a lot. But being unhappy with anything less than a championship isn't healthy. I learned my lesson this past year.

At May 13, 2008, 12:09:00 PM, Anonymous 1&done said...

DeMar DeRozan's father and brother are saying that DeMar would consider a release from USC if they get put on probation for the O.J. Mayo allegations. The just reported that UCLA, North Carolina, Kansas and Memphis have recently inquired about DeRozan's availability. These 4 powerhouses wanted to make sure if anything happened not to forget about them. I'm sure Howland could find room for DeMar. It's a dream but if we got "Bobo" Morgan and DeRozan could you guys imagine the first "Fab 6"??? Wow!


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