2017 Top 100 Recap | Baltimore, Rochester, Chicago

2017 Top 100 Recap

Baltimore . Rochester . Chicago

Ike Cornish (2021, Dulaney) 

The young wing continued to show why Division 1 programs all over the east are stopping by Dulaney open gyms this fall. With a unique blend of size and skill, the 6’6 Cornish, displayed his emerging inside/outside offensive game at the Baltimore Top 100.  With crafty drives to the rim, a smooth jump shot, and a great feel for the game, Ike Cornish proved why, even is a freshman, he is a name to know in the Baltimore Area this winter.

Nytre Brown (2019, Lake Clifton) 

The most physically imposing player at the Baltimore Top 100 Turner did not disappoint. With a strong 6’7 frame, the Lake Clifton big man dominated every inch of the paint! Grabbing rebounds, blocking shots, and using a soft touch to finish around the rim. Even with his size, he showed an ability to run the floor, and defend in space against smaller players.

Sherwyn Devonish (2018, Wise)

The Wise High School guard was flat out the best guard in the building. His consistent ability to play quickly but under control is what has college coaches from every level interested. He puts relentless pressure on the defense by creating off the dribble and scoring in the lane. With a much improved jump shot, Devonish is turning into an all-around scoring point guard, who can run a team, and get you a basket!

Deson Flood (2018, Good Counsel) 

Deson Flood will be one of the best athletes in the WCAC this year. The 6’5 wing was virtually unstoppable in transition, consistently finishing above the rim. A quick leaper, with a skill set that keeps improving, Flood displayed an ability to create driving lanes in the half court, as well as showcased a capable jump shot to keep defenders honest. His length and quickness makes him one of the most versatile defenders in the area! It’s no surprise that a variety of D1 coaches have been in to see the Good Counsel wing.

Noah Hutchins (2019) 

The highflying PG from Buffalo is one of the best athletes in the 2019 class. Hutchins has the ability to get and finish above the rim in both transition and in a half court setting. With a GPA high enough to get into any college in America, and a skill set only a few have, Noah’s recruitment will be wide open. If Noah can continue to develop his jump shot and PG skill set he will be one of the best 2019 PG in all of NY.

Kobe Long (2020) 

With the ability to consistently knock down shots from 23 feet and in, Kobe Long has a chance to be the next big thing to come out of McQuaid. Kobe knocked down shots for the entire 5 hours he was in the gym. If Long can add other aspects to his game he will have a chance to be D1 scholarship player. This season will tell a lot about the kind of player Kobe can become moving forward.

Will Amica (2020) 

One of the stronger bodied 2020s in the area, Amica has the ability to play on both ends of the floor. An ability to play through contact was on display all event as Amica had no problem getting to the rim and finishing. If Amica can stretch out a few more inches and continue to play at the level he showed at SJFC, he will be coveted by many D1 schools moving forward.

Eddie Creal (2018, Romeoville)

Eddie used his athleticism and strength to dominate the event.  He has a high motor and was unstoppable in the open court, including a 3 minute stretch in the second half of a game where he had 11 points on 3 dunks.  Division 1 programs will start taking notice of Eddie this high school season!

Jeremiah Oden (2019, St. Rita)

Jeremiah is an ultra-talented wing/forward who plays for catholic league power St. Rita.  At 6’ 8”, he moves fluidly and can put the ball on the deck and finish at the rim.  Arguably the highest ceiling of any prospect at the event, he will have numerous Division 1 offers by the end of the high school season.

Robert Harvey (2018, Hillcrest)

Robert had his full game on display this weekend in Chicago!  The wing is a knockdown shooter who can also put it on the deck and make some plays.  With a developed skill set, he plays a mature game that makes it easy for him out on the court.  Already holding an Illinois St. offer, expect more schools to watch Harvey play this season.

What Age Should Kids Start Playing Sports?

When should your child start playing basketball? It’s a difficult question to answer and there’s many opinions out there. To determine whether your child should start playing, it’s a good idea to hear what professionals and other parents are thinking. It is also important to think about how playing can impact your child.

A Doctor’s View

If you’re really concerned about when your child should start playing, it’s probably a good idea to figure out what the professionals think. Medical professionals are generally in favor of children being active, but they warn that various sports require different levels of development. Your child is probably ready to run, swim, or play catch when he or she is very young. An organized sport like basketball though, isn’t going to come until later. A summer youth basketball league or a youth basketball camp might be fun at six, but you might want to wait for more in-depth basketball skills training or a real league until your child is after the age of ten.

Critics and Boosters

As with so many things related to parenting, you’re going to find a lot of arguments between supporters and opponents. There are some who want to start kids as early as possible, noting that they’ll get the chance to have once in a lifetime experiences when they’re young. On the other hand, there are people who think that starting kids young is just putting too much pressure on the child. Unfortunately, there’s not a lot that can be said to dissuade either side – and both sides have solid evidence to support their views.

The Difference in Leagues

Of course, there’s also a huge difference in how kids play sports. Experts already talk about the insanity that can surround kids’ sports at the higher end, but that doesn’t apply everywhere. Putting your seven year old in summer youth basketball is fine – just don’t make him or her play in front of scouts. It’s just as important to know the expectations for your child, as it is to know what sport your child is going to play.

Knowing Your Child

One of the best pieces of advice is that you have to know your child. Some children are ready to play sports earlier than others. If your child shows that he or she has good hand-eye coordination and is ready to play in a group, give him or her a chance to play. If your child isn’t interested, don’t be forceful. No matter what anyone else says, you can only start a child on a sport once ready to play.

There’s no real agreement on when a child can start playing sports. Doctors think team sports should start after age six, but some children are ready earlier and others are ready later. If you’re not sure when your child should start, try out a skills camp – it will give you a better idea of where he or she is developmentally.

Are AAU Teams Mandatory to be Recruited?

AAU basketball tournaments are the norm during the summer months. Many competitive high school basketball players find their way onto the roster of an AAU team. These teams definitely seek out the best talent because AAU coaches want to have the cream of the crop. These teams are constantly going from place to place, leading to greater exposure for a player, as well as picking up favorable training skills and networking.

Parents of student athletes might want to know if playing for an AAU team is truly necessary to be recruited. If the ultimate goal is to play college basketball, will skipping AAU hurt your respective chances?

There isn’t a simple definitive answer to how recruitment works. It’s a complex process and many coaches utilize different methods to find the best available players. Does that mean AAU basketball tournaments aren’t hotbeds for college coaches during the summer months? Of course not. There is way too much talent on the floor.

Does that mean your student athlete will get noticed just because they participate in AAU? They may or may not. Coaches may already know the players they are checking out when they travel to these tournaments. However, they may find other great athletes by accident. Not many will have the time to watch every game with multiple going on at the same time.

Here are some reasons why AAU basketball can help and some possible alternatives to consider.

Exposure

College coaches are aware that basketball talent will be available in masses at AAU basketball tournaments. Many will go to a tournament with several blue chip kids in mind. They may also have several other potential targets they want to see in person. AAU basketball isn’t as structured as the sport during the high school season. Coaches often utilize the AAU season to talk, network, and establish ties with recruits. They can assess talent to some degree, but that isn’t the bulk of their visit. An AAU basketball tournament is always a showcase of talent, which can be good or bad depending on who you ask.

Basketball Training Skills

AAU basketball teams have a bad reputation for not practicing that often during the summer months. Former NBA player and current coach Steve Kerr believes AAU teams aren’t doing the right things. AAU teams might work on game type situations and various basketball skills training. Some NBA players and former greats don’t think that training is enough. Kobe Bryant is among those. He thinks AAU sells short on teaching kids “the fundamentals of the game.”

An AAU team either hosts tournaments or travels to other destinations to play other AAU squads. Depending on a family situation, an AAU basketball experience could be costly.

Parents might opt for other options like basketball camps. Hoop Group has been providing such camps for decades. Players like Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, and James Harden have all participated in Hoop Group. Hoop Group offers fundamental learning lessons like ball handling and shooting camps, point guard school, and dead eye shooting factory. This might be an alternative to AAU based on skills methodology.

Networking

Networking is a valuable part of the recruiting process. Kids and parents are anxious to meet coaches and get an assessment of their talent. They want to get that pat on the back and feel good about their abilities. They want to understand if they can play college basketball. An on the spot critique can be invaluable.

What often gets lost in the shuffle is the ability to network with coaches. AAU tournaments don’t always offer the greatest atmosphere to introduce yourself to coaches. They may be watching intensely with a chart and pen. They may also be talking and spending time with various AAU coaches or the players they covet. College coaches might also be hanging out with one another and conversing as well.

It’s hard to interrupt and get that quality one on one time or even make an introduction. It’s important for young athletes to figure out a way to network before tournaments.

An alternative might be to create your own “online resume” during the summer months. Parents and student athletes may want to create a social media presence which includes highlights, statistics, and future schedules. They may also want to have a video reel available by hard copy they can deliver to the coach. That reel should consist of an edited three to four minute montage of the best plays of that player. A point guard’s video would be drastically different from a power forward’s video because they should showcase their passing ability. A center’s video would be completely different from a two guard, etc. The video needs to have the player spot shadowed throughout so coaches don’t have to guess which player they are assessing.

Overall, AAU basketball gives kids the opportunity to compete and get more potential exposure from coaches. Those wanting to improve specific basketball skills over the summer months may want to consider camps in addition to playing AAU. They’ll get more individual coaching and the opportunity to work on more fundamentals so they can excel during the next high school season. AAU will give your student athlete an amazing amount of repetition on the floor. The big question parents should be asking is will it give my child the valuable basketball fundamentals they need leading into their next school year.

A Parent’s Guide to Sports Recruitment

We all realize our standout basketball player might not be the next Michael Jordan. He or she may never make it to the professional ranks since only a limited amount of basketball players do get that opportunity.

The good news is that many stellar high school basketball players get the chance to have their college education paid for. Being able to play basketball at the collegiate level is something only very skilled and talented players get the opportunity to do.

Parents often wonder how the recruitment process works. How do I get my son or daughter noticed? How can I get my child’s education paid for considering they have some serious skills on the hardwood?

Getting the right amount of spotlight could be pivotal in helping your son or daughter land that scholarship. This  attention might allow coaches from different, elite collegiate basketball programs the chance to see if your student athlete has what it takes to play at the next level.

So how do you do that?

Exposure

Exposure is generally higher during the summer months when coaches have an opportunity to step away from their college teams. Basketball exposure camps are usually filled with elite athletes who are already getting looked at by coaches. It’s no secret that college coaches thrive in this atmosphere during the summer months on the recruiting trail. If you want to get recruited, go to where the most talented players in the region or country are.

Hoop Group hosts college elite basketball camps. 128 current NBA players have dribbled up and down our floors. Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving are just a few of the top notch NBA talents to participate in Hoop Group. The organization, founded in 1963, also draws strong praise for tournaments around the country.

Another good exposure route is playing AAU basketball. While it’s been criticized for just being a showcase for individuals wanting to get recruited, AAU basketball has been around for years, and college coaches are aware of the talent for these types of travel teams. The only hitch is not everyone makes an AAU team. Your student athlete will need to have serious skills to get minutes in the game. However, the exposure from these travels teams during the summer months is outstanding. A college coach can go to an AAU tourney and see 16-32 teams or more in one setting.

Game Tape Reel

A game tape reel is essential for athletes wanting to show coaches where they might fit in their potential next team. A game tape should include three to four minutes of edited video with a spot shadow showing the player at the inception of the play. There are companies that can help parents edit videos at a cost with the entire recruiting process in mind. College coaches need to see the player, position, and what they can potentially deliver to their squad. Video is being used more now than ever in the recruiting world. It keeps college coaches from traveling extensively and allows them to assess talent via phone or desktop. Parents might want to have an online video and a hard copy (DVD) to present to coaches.

Academic Eligibility

Parents also need to make sure their student athletes are qualified academically. This process starts freshman year of high school. Every grade counts and it can be very difficult to raise a lower GPA. Parents will want to emphasize very early the importance of good grades if their prospective athletes wish to play collegiate hoops. Generally, students need to have a 2.5 GPA or higher to play at the next level, but requirements differ per individual school and level. For instance, eligibility requirements are different for NCAA and NAIA. Students also need to score well on standardized tests like the SAT or ACT. There is prep available for both online. For the NCAA, it’s also important to understand which core classes you’ll need from the start of freshman year.

Web Presence

Recruiting also involves having a web presence. In the digital age, players who have a strong online profile will have an advantage over players who don’t. This should house all relevant information for the student athlete like height, weight, statistics, awards, videos, and grades. Companies allow student athletes to build a recruiting page that college coaches can easily visit. This allows the coach to quickly assess a student athlete.

The bottom line is the athlete will need to put a ton of work in to be considered. Only a certain number of basketball players get to compete after high school. The most important thing is to work hard, develop fundamentals, and concentrate on overall improvement. Playing against high caliber competition is also a must for those wanting to play college basketball. That’s why elite basketball camps offer that extra exposure and the chance to play in front of potential college coaches. Taking care of grades, building a presence, and participating in events and tournaments during the summer months can also add a significant advantage.

5 Things to Look for in a Basketball Camp

What’s in a basketball camp? Do you want to learn fundamentals? Does your child need individual coaching or just exposure? Do you want someone to let your child win every game? NBA all-star Kevin Durant isn’t buying that. It’s all about a coach being up front with a basketball player about his or her ability. It’s about coaching and exposure.

Hopefully, a great basketball camp offers that and more. Good camps are run by professionals who seek to not only help the student athlete get better at hoops, but also get much needed exposure.

Here are 5 things to look for when selecting your next basketball camp.

Individual Coaching

Each basketball player deserves to have his or her own unique skill set examined; one size doesn’t always fit all. LeBron James is a different player than James Harden. Kyrie Irving is a different point guard than Jason Kidd. Good summer basketball camps have a good coach- to- player ratio so everyone’s abilities are addressed. The fortunate thing about basketball is that every player needs certain skills. Dribbling, guarding, and passing are universal languages coaches speak and teach. However, college elite basketball camps offer coaching that allows individuals to step up their game by addressing specific issues or problem areas. Tackling these could help the player advance to the next level. Basketball clinics for high school students should have universal drills but also provide individual mentoring.

Coaches With Experience

College elite basketball camps typically sport coaches on their roster with college experience. This way, the coach can provide high school athletes with what they need to know and do to get better. A good coach can have years of coaching experience or might have never coached but just played the game. However, not every former college basketball player can coach. It’s important as a parent to seek out college basketball camps that hone in on skills and offer improvement from the status quo. A high school basketball player can get rudimentary skills and fundamentals from a high school coach. The expectations from a college coach or player will typically be different. The game is intense and involves more competition; players need to adjust accordingly. That’s where coaches with experience really come in.

Other Elite Athletes

Basketball clinics for high school students are abundant. A parent has many choices. One thing that makes a camp stand out is better competition. More elite athletes at the camp can really let a student athlete know what he or she has to do to get better. Great basketball players love competition because they learn to value hard work. It doesn’t hurt to include other athletes. This way, the athletes get the opportunity to self assess. They also get to learn moves, fundamentals, and aspirations of others who may be more advanced. This provides more motivation to learn and enhances the overall atmosphere.

Great Networking Connections

Let’s face it. Sometimes it is about who you know. This is true, especially with athletes. Great summer basketball clinics offer the athlete an opportunity to network with other players and coaches. Coaching is a small fraternity. It’s crucial to get to know other kids who are being recruited and be in an environment with players who have already committed. Coaches will visit basketball exposure camps if other great athletes are around. This is an opportunity to network with or present your skills in front of them. Some camps have multiple coaches in attendance for additional benefits.

Drills and Fundamentals

Basketball exposure camps sometimes get caught up in the exposure end of things. Let’s not forget that at the end of the day, sports clinics are meant to be about learning and practicing. As a parent, you want your student athlete to be in a challenging but appropriate environment. The money spent on camps isn’t just for getting noticed. It’s for taking away skills you can use on the basketball court in the future. A great basketball camp features necessary drills taught by great coaches who have vast collegiate experience.

Whether your main goal is exposure or strictly fundamentals, choosing the right camp can be difficult. A great basketball camp offers an incredible combination of the five ingredients listed above.