Sunday, June 01, 2008

Bruin Recruiting: Prep News Roundup (6/2)

By Bruin Basketball Report

Prep News Roundup is published every Monday.


Reeves Nelson (6-6, 220), Junior, Modesto, Calif./ Modesto Christian, Nelson may be the biggest enigma of the West Coast Class of 2009. Last summer, Nelson played with much greater urgency and attacked the basket with reckless abandon each time out. However, during his spring campaign, he appears to have thickened up (body-wise) and has lost a considerable amount of bounce. In addition, his skills have not developed as I had hoped. His jump shot needs refining in both technique and selection, and he has constantly forced the issue off the bounce. Nelson at times has dominated because of his physical strength. However, I'm very skeptical to how effective he'll be at the Pac-10 level. On the positive side, his handle is solid and he's a very capable passer, but the way his body is developing and with his lack of a consistent jump shot, Nelson is projected to being an undersized 4-man with a shaky face-up game. ESPN 5/28

J'Mison (Bobo) Morgan had been listed at 6'10" for awhile, but his high school coach recently told The Times' Diane Pucin that he's now 6'11". Listed heights for college athletes are frequently unreliable, and it's important to take them with a grain of salt. As early as high school, players/coaches/parents may slightly inflate those type of stats to make a player sound more appealing to colleges, more intimidating to opponents, etc. LA Times 5/29

Archbishop Mitty's Drew Gordon unleashed the best discus throw of his life Friday at the 90th annual CIF State High School Track and Field Championship with a mark of 180 feet 2 inches to qualify for today's final. But the UCLA-bound senior has another milestone to celebrate today in San Jose - Mitty's graduation ceremonies. Gordon plans to participate in both events - building up his frequent flier points in the process."Graduation is pretty important, it's something that I didn't want to miss," said Gordon, whose throw was the fourth-best of the day behind Dayhsan Regans of Foothill (203-07). After undergoing minor knee surgery to repair a frayed meniscus three weeks ago, the cross-over basketball star has felt more comfortable on the discus ring than throwing the shot. Mercury News 5/31

There was a nice chemistry between UCLA bound class of 2010 guard Kendall Williams and 2009 Georgian Brandon Reed on Saturday afternoon. Williams was in a zone in a big time, confidence snatching victory. The 6-foot-2 guard showed off great speed, great passing and good to great shooting in the tussle. Williams made quick friends with Reed, who was dangerous from deep and ready to score at the rim. Both had it dialed in for 20-plus points. Williams excelled at the point while Reed shined at the two. Both were amongst the best at their respective positions on Saturday. Gator Bait 6/1


Just because it deserves repeated mentioning, the 2009 class, at this point, looks like it could be a huge one for KU. The top four players in the class – G John Wall, G Xavier Henry (that’s pronounced Zah-vee-ay, by the way), PF Derrick Favors and PF Renardo Sidney all list Kansas, and Henry has reportedly all-but eliminated everyone except KU and Memphis. Furthermore, players Nos. 7, 8 and 11 are also considering Kansas. That’s G Lance Stephenson, C Daniel Orton and G Dominic Cheek. Topeka-Capital Journal 5/27

Rising senior wing Nolan Dennis seemed somewhat awestruck Friday night playing his first game inside the Smith Center at UNC. Dennis, a slender 6-5 wing from Texas, is being recruited by Carolina and expressed his admiration for the Tar Heels’ arena. “This place is huge,” he said. “Walking in here, I can tell you that I want to play in a place like this.” Dennis, who said Carolina was his favorite college program growing up, is also being courted by Memphis, Texas, Texas A&M, Kansas and UCLA. He would fit UNC’s need for a versatile wing. Fay Observer 5/27

Tyler Honeycutt (6-7, 180), Junior, Sylmar, Calif., If Honeycutt continues to progress at this rate, he may turn out to be the No. 1 wing in the Class of 2009 on the West Coast. He appears to be taller each time out and is quickly approaching 6-8. He has that Austin Daye feel to him at this stage, and he is nowhere near reaching his potential. His jump shot has become much more consistent this spring and his passing continues to amaze me each time out. Whom he guards at the next level is still in question, but offensively he has high-major tools. ESPN 5/28

Renardo Sidney (6-9, 250), Junior, Los Angeles/ Fairfax, Every year there are always couple of superstar talents who fail to dominate when they should -- including past greats like Chris Washburn, Shawn Kemp and Vince Carter, and the more recent B.J. Mullens.Sidney's effort doesn't always match his tremendous ability.Whether it's boredom or a lack of competitive drive there always appears to be something missing. Sidney has unique ability and his overall talent speaks volumes, but if he ever got nasty from a physical standpoint, it would be over. He has a plethora of offensive skills, but unfortunately most of his skills are showcased on the perimeter. Sidney dominated this event because there was no one close to his talent and size to challenge him. If he takes his conditioning seriously and develops a back-to-the basket game, he should be a high lottery pick. ESPN 5/28

Kyle Caudill, a 6-10 freshman out of Brea, Calif./ Brea Olinda, is absolutely huge. He doesn't have much bounce, but he has terrific hands and uses either hand equally well while converting inside. ESPN 5/28

Jeremy Tyler, a 6-foot-9 power forward from San Diego, is the nation's top-ranked high school sophomore basketball player in the nation, according to Tyler, a 240-pound sophomore at San Diego High School, led the Cavers to a 23-5 record in 2007-08 and won the California Interscholastic Federation San Diego Section Division I crown for the first time in 33 years. Tyler averaged 18 points, 14.5 rebounds and 7.7 blocks while shooting 51 percent from the field last season. North Carolina, Florida, UCLA, Duke and Georgetown are among the schools that have contacted Tyler. Transworld News 5/29

Jeremy Tyler was working on another. The 6-foot-9 forward showed flashes of why he sits atop of the 2010 rankings. He dribbled in from the high post to the low block and banked in a jumper early in the game. He knew when he had a mismatch down low and went right to the rim. Tyler showed some nifty footwork down low and scored at the rim whenever he really wanted. His passing skills in the post were also at a high level. Tyler is a big time talent and that has never been a question mark. It's just a matter of when he wants to be a talent. For the first half of the first game of the night, the San Diego native looked like he wanted to shine. Gator Bait 5/31

If Abdul Gaddy and Avery Bradley get their way, the Bellarmine Prep pair will be basketball teammates after they graduate from high school. Gaddy sent college basketball coaches scurrying to revive recruiting pitches Thursday when The News Tribune’s All-Area Player of the Year withdrew his oral commitment to attend the University of Arizona. Gaddy, who is rated as the No. 2 point guard in the nation by, and Bradley, a fellow junior and ranked as the No. 9 shooting guard, say they want to be a package deal. “We’re perfect together,” said Bradley, a 6-foot-2 senior-to-be. “No one can stop us.” The 6-foot-3 Gaddy said changes in Arizona’s coaching staff led him to back off his commitment. But he still could become a Wildcat. “Arizona is still the front-runner,” he said Friday` evening, wearing an Arizona sweatshirt as he sat in the stands at Seattle’s Franklin High at the Quaker Summer Slam basketball tournament. “I’m giving them, along with some other schools, a chance to re-recruit me.” News Tribune 5/31

Lance Stephenson, a 6-5 guard from Brooklyn's historic Lincoln High School, has narrowed his list to UCLA, USC and Kansas, according to an report. Stephenson is the No. 7 overall player in the class of 2009, according to, one of six top 10 players from that class still considering KU. Topeka Capital Journal 5/31

The Michael Snaer show was on in prime time on Saturday night. The California wing was outstanding. Snaer's ability to shoot off the bounce is his best asset. In fact, his fall-away deep perimeter shot was one of the best overall basketball moves of the day. The 6-foot-5 rising senior also showed off some freaky athleticism with a constant barrage of attacks to the rim where he scored with dunks and tip-ins. Once he tightens up his ball-handling skills and goes to his athleticism more, Snaer's offensive package will be one of the best in the West, if it isn't already. Gator Bait 6/1

(photo credit: ESPN)



At Jun 1, 2008, 5:07:00 PM, Anonymous jake said...

We need to build that "wow" factor at Pauley Pavillion or whatever name the sponsors ends up renaming the place.
Although the display of banners is certainly impressive.

At Jun 1, 2008, 5:54:00 PM, Anonymous Larry said...

Reeves Nelson - what happened? Everybody wanted you. The reports above aren't good. Common man, I know you got it in you. Let's do this things and win one for the Blue and Gold!

At Jun 2, 2008, 5:08:00 PM, Anonymous jake said...

Ignore the reports on Reeves Nelson ... he is fine. Absent from some of the aau places due to an injury. Also - enduring a growth/strength spurt ... common for this age kid. He will be a kid that does not have to add muscle once he is here. Not a worry.

At Jun 3, 2008, 3:19:00 AM, Anonymous Brew In said...

Cool Jake, love to hear the positive report!
From the videos I've seen, I think at very least, Nelson will be a bust-your-butt bruising role player that will give Howland everything he has everytime he steps on that court!
Those team mates that do the "grunt" work are always a compliment to the high profile future NBA stars!

At Jun 3, 2008, 6:08:00 AM, Anonymous KDL1984 said...

Anybody hear anything about the draft prospects of Luc and Josh? I expect Love and Westbrook to go, but wouldn't it be nice to have our two forwards back to lead the freshmen Super Cinco?
Hey BBR- Which SG would you rather have in the 2009 class...Bradley or Dennis? And what are the chances that we land Lance Stephenson over the losers across town?
I, being the selfish Bruin that I am, would love to see UCLA get 5 five stars each and every year, but I'd have concerns about too many head cases! Howland always does a great job mixing stars with role players. Having too many stars doesn't work (See Lakers a few years ago with Malone, Payton, etc). I want us to start winning like back in the Wooden days...back to back to back to back....but with players that compliment each other. Not ones that complete with each other for shots.
Success breeds success gentlemen- It's not about who goes where! It's about the banners!

At Jun 3, 2008, 12:46:00 PM, Anonymous Rob said...

KDL 1984: I agree with you, but no one is going to win the way John Wooden did. But then again, let's give it a shot. In college ball, I think you first need the legitimacy to pick up one or two 5-star recruits almost every year. Then you need a coach who has a game plan (emphasis on team defense) who can develop the 2,3,and 4 star recruits that fill out the rest of the roster. Then you need very good to excellent point guard play. And then, most of all, you need good health and luck to win 6 games in a row in the tournament. I am increasingly both pleased and proud of what the Bruins have accomplished these last three years.

At Jun 4, 2008, 4:41:00 AM, Anonymous Bare Gunner said...

Good role players are always a neccessity for the success of any team. The Lakers would not be where they are without Kobe's teamates stepping up like they have. Bryant certainly could not do it alone.
We now know how well Coach Howland can groom and mold these players into efficient machines when they take court.
But I think the difference between a Reeves Nelson and say a Renardo Sidney is attitude. Howland WILL get them in playing shape, but everything I have heard about Nelson is he is very coachable and fits the Bruin style program. Sidney on the other hand, has loads of talent but if he doesn't buy into the Howland philosophy, then he is NOT a fit for the program.
Guys, we need to sit back, relax, and trust Howland to make the right moves for the "right" players. Like Rob eluded to, I'm pretty damn proud of what we've done these past three years!

At Jun 4, 2008, 6:50:00 AM, Anonymous BruinFan said...

I'm sitting back trusting Howland as Westbrook, late 15 pick in the NBA...Howland knows how to pick 'em...3 Final Fours proves that...
exciting times to continue for as long as he is our leader...

At Jun 4, 2008, 8:31:00 AM, Anonymous Brew In said...

Me too! Coach H is the man! We can only be so fortunate to have him at the helm!
In the meantime, just kickin' it, lettin' my brews chill, and enjoying the Bruins continued success!
Now we need some of that success to rub off on the football program!

At Jun 4, 2008, 11:10:00 AM, Anonymous Bare Gunner said...

Thought this might be interesting to fellow BBR readers. Based on's Top 50 recruits for 2008, I have listed in order, the most recruits by school within the top 50 and their placement:
UCLA - 2,25,37,46,48
Wake Forest - 7,17,20
Memphis - 6,34,47
Ohio St. - 1,19
Arizona - 4,36
Georgetown - 8,49
Lousiville - 9,18
Connecticut - 13,14
UNC - 15,33
Alabama - 21,38
Florida - 26,27
Kentucky - 28,43
Kansas - 26,27
I think after seeing this, you'll agree that UCLA is far-and-away above the pack. You can tell that to all those other school boosters who beg to differ and say they landed the best recruiting class.

At Jun 4, 2008, 3:05:00 PM, Anonymous BruinFan said...

I'm thinking we are going to blow away the rest of the PAC-10 this coming year - by 4 games+
Hey, who's going to be good in the Pac 10??

At Jun 4, 2008, 4:21:00 PM, Anonymous Bruin Basketball Report said...

Although Dennis is 3" taller, prefer Bradley due to his athleticism and lockdown defense potential (see Russell Westbrook). But Bradley is shopping around and the Gaddy issue clouds the recruitment. We'll have to see what happens after the summer.
As for Stephenson....the Bruins obviously have a chance since he lists them as a favorite but at this point we're not sold this is a good match for either party...


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