Pooley’s Picks: College Basketball Recruiting Process

Pooley’s Picks

College Basketball Recruiting Process

Qualifications:  The college basketball recruiting process is a tough thing to navigate.  There are plenty of traps along the way and most people feel at least a little overwhelmed by the process.  However, one of the reasons parents and players struggle in the recruiting process is because they make mistakes.  These mistakes are common and if it is your first time through the process, frankly easy to make.  This edition of Pooley’s Picks we’ll dive into the ten most common mistakes in the college basketball recruiting process.

Picks are in no particular order. Please enjoy the sixth installment of Pooley’s Picks.

Weak Academics: Too often players think that recruiting is all about basketball.  Not knowing the academic requirements of schools you want to go to costs many student athletes.  On top of this, having weak junior or senior years after a strong start leaves many good students on the wrong end of Ivy/Patriot recruiting.  See, the Ivy and Patriot leagues recruit based on a players Academic Index, with each school having slightly different requirements.  The Academic Index factors your GPA and your SAT or ACT scores together to give you a score out of 240.  The calculations are a little complicated, but basically what you need to know is the better you do on both your grades and the test, the easier it is to recruit you.  Therefore, its probable that some high academic kids will actually be taken over players they are less talented than in order to allow those schools to meet requirements.  Other schools like Stanford, Northwester, Vanderbilt in Division 1 also have higher academic standards than just being a qualifier.  Finally, most D3 schools operate completely within the confines of their schools admissions process.  If you aren’t a good enough student to get it, it doesn’t matter what you play like.  Even the top D3’s who can assist student athletes in admissions, don’t have free-reign and may only be able to take one player a year that doesn’t live up to standards.

Short and Sweet: Do well in school so you don’t limit your choices.

We’re Just Working on His Game: There is nothing more important than getting better.  However, in order to get recruited at the right level it isn’t all about instruction and development.  Players have to go to the right events and be exposed to the right people to be accurately recruited.  Too often I’ve heard people say “we aren’t doing {insert event} because Johnny needs to work on his game.”  This is not the way to get to the right college.  The more a player can be seen (in the right light) by different colleges, the more likely he is to go to the appropriate level.

 Short and Sweet: Get to the right events often, the more visibility the better.

Pitt Jam Fest One of many AAU Tournaments to aid the college recruiting process

He HAS to Play for ‘XYZ’ AAU Team:  Wrong! There is never just one answer or one group of answers on the AAU circuit.  I would argue it is extremely important for everyone to play with an AAU team.  However, just because one team wins more games or goes to a certain group of tournaments does not make it the right fit for everyone.  My rule of thumb, if you aren’t a top seven player on your team, you’re not on the right team.  Players going to a tournament with 100 coaches and playing five minutes isn’t as good as going to an event with 25 coaches and playing twenty minutes.

Short and Sweet: Play with a team that lets you shine but goes to the right tournaments.


Image result for hoop group elite summer camp

Elite Camps can be a great supplement to summer exposure

He Doesn’t Need Camps or Clinics: Never get caught up in the thought that AAU and High School basketball are enough.  Many players will be recruited from their High School teams.  Many more will be recruited from their AAU teams.  Some players will find the college basketball recruiting strongest at camps or clinics.  Each player is different and college coaches like to see kids on multiple platforms.

 Short and Sweet: Camps and Clinics are an important supplement to high school and AAU.


This Event Doesn’t Have Anyone Watching My Kid:  With the amount of games and events that kids attend today, you’re bound to attend one or two without a multitude of college coaches.  Don’t let who it APPEARS is watching you to effect how you play.  College coaching is a network and often a coach at one division will communicate with coaches in other divisions if they see a kid they like.  Second, and perhaps more important, scouting services are all over.  Many scouts will look like an average fan or parent, but often attend events to find players people don’t know about, or re-evaluate guys they have seen before.  Don’t get caught playing lazy or with an attitude by one of these gentlemen see that it can hurt you.

 Short and Sweet: You don’t ever really know who is watching, always play like the college of your dreams is there.


He is underrated:  Every player in the county, except for the kid ranked #1 in his class is “underrated.”  Every kid that isn’t getting recruited to Duke and Kentucky is “under the radar.”  The truth is, most kids are getting recruited to the right level.  If your son has a lot of D3 interest and no D2 or D1 interest, it is likely that is where his skill set is the best fit.  As long as you are attending the right events and getting in front of coaches and scouts, the chances are the recruitment is accurate.  Are there exceptions? Absolutely.  Don’t let any one person tell you that your son isn’t good enough, but PLEASE be as objective as possible.  There’s an old adage that states: A player’s coach thinks he’s one level higher than he is, a player’s parents and the player thinks he’s two levels higher than he is.  Just about every person involved in college basketball recruiting does it as a full-time job.  Listen to as many people in this space (coaches, scouts, event operators) as you can, and don’t fixate on the one piece of information you like to hear.  Aggregate all the info you get and remember, you may know your kid better than everyone else, but the experts know everyone else better than you do.

 Short and Sweet: Get as many opinions as you can, and do your best to be objective.


My Kid is better than THAT level:  A variation of the mistake above, too many people get caught up in classifying their kid as ‘better’ than a school or group of schools.  Before you say this ask yourself: “Have I seen enough basketball at this level to be accurate?”  Maybe the answer is no, then go watch a game.  If you think your kid is too good to play in the Patriot League, go watch a top level Patriot team play a game.  If you think your son is too good to play in the NE-10, go watch a playoff game in that league.  Most of the time you’ll be surprised just how good the basketball is.  Be careful when putting down leagues too, it is possible your son ends up at that level or similar, which is an accomplishment not a failure.  College basketball is an incredibly hard sport to get recruited in, with just about every high school in the country offering it and only 12 spots on most college rosters.  Any recruitment is a blessing and an accomplishment, never take it for granted.

 Short and Sweet: Know what each level really looks like, before passing judgement on recruiting.


My son stopped this player and he is ranked here:  No one cares.  Trust me on this one.  The player on player comparison in one game, is a very bad litmus test for how good your son is.  Most scouting services and college coaches completely dismiss this.  Your son (and the other player) will not be judged on just one performance, especially with so many other factors determining how players play in a game.  Playing against good competition day-in and day-out is what you should be focusing on.  The college recruiting process should never come down to one match up and if there are schools that buy into that, they aren’t the schools you want your son to go to.  What if as a senior he’s scoring 15 points a game and gets out played during the practice before the championship game by a freshman?

 Short and Sweet: The college recruiting process is about being consistent and making lasting impressions, not one time


We’re not entertaining interest from those schools:  If you know about a school and don’t have any interest tell the coach.  Sometimes the best thing to hear as a recruiter is no.  However, if you don’t know anything about the school, try to learn more.  Even if you think your son is better than that level, you should always have a plan if his recruiting doesn’t go the way you expect.  If you think your son is a D1 player, but doesn’t have the interest yet, pick a few D2/3 schools and find a couple fits.  The Division 1 schools may come around.  If not, he’ll have a place to go to school where he can play, get an education, and enjoy college.

 Short and Sweet: Give yourself options in the college recruiting process, don’t put all your eggs in one basket.


Not being Proactive: Too many parents and players are passive about the thing that is most important to them: their college basketball recruiting process.  Be your own advocate.  Clean-up your social media, change your voicemail to be professional, get game tape, and send colleges your schedule.  Find schools you like and help them recruit you.  Schools aren’t going to offer you a scholarship on the spot, but certainly will take notice and evaluate you if you make it easy for them.  Plan out a spring and summer schedule with good events and play on a good AAU team, get a game tape and highlight video (game tapes are still the most important).  This will give you the best shot.  Don’t ever get “under recruited” because you didn’t do your job.

 Short and Sweet: Be aggressive and take control of your recruitment.



Pooley’s Picks: New Jersey Tip-Off

Pooley’s Picks

2016 New Jersey Tip-Off Preview

Qualifications:  Sticking with the theme of high school events we have NEW JERSEY BASKETBALL BACK!  Nothing like the start of basketball season in NJ and nothing like the 2016 New Jersey Tip-Off.  This week we’ll have a little different approach to Pooley’s Picks.  No specific qualifications this week, just some pointers for people to watch out for during this event and really the rest of the season.

Picks are in no particular order. Please enjoy the fifth installment of Pooley’s Picks.

2016 New Jersey Tip Off

The 2016 New Jersey Tip-Off: Ten great match ups. 5 of the top 7 teams in NJ.

The Event: For years (17 to be exact), the Hoop Group has put on the NJ Tip-Off.  Each year, it features high-profile match ups and top-tier talent. The event itself is well run and the venues are always excellent.  The 2016 New Jersey Tip-Off will be very much the same.  First, Eric Kessler and Dave Fedor have a ton of experience running events, and more importantly a ton of knowledge of the teams.  When you get the best teams together to start the season it is important to have a great setup and planning.  This event will have that and more.


HC of Pope John at 2016 New Jersey Tip-Off, Vincent Johnson, while at Lehigh.

Vincent Johnson: Vincent was named the head coach of Pope John after former coach Jason Hasson left for Pennsylvania.  “Chico” as many know him, is a great coach with an unbelievable background in basketball.  More importantly, he is a good friend of mine and an excellent mentor to many young ball players.  The #1 thing I’m excited for at the 2016 New Jersey Tip-Off is to watch Coach Johnson in his head coaching debut.  Now, he has been matched up with Roselle Catholic, a staple at the top of the NJ rankings.  Don’t be surprised if Coach Johnson and his young, talented squad can keep it close.

2016 New Jersey Tip-Off participant Mike Morreale

2016 New Jersey Tip-Off participant Mike Morreale

Michael Morreale:  The 6’5″ 2017 senior is one of my favorites.  He is an excellent player, known both for his excellent athleticism and long range jumpers.  Entering his senior year, he’ll be a valuable asset for Coach Mergin Sina and the Knights.  Look for Mike to knock down a couple threes and convert on a jam or two.  More than that, look for Mike to make the big play at the end.  Defensively Mike is one of the best around, guarding point guards right on down to centers.  More importantly, he is a great kid and a great teammate.  No question that at the 2016 New Jersey Tip-Off everyone will enjoy watching Mike.



Blair v Linden: Earlier in the year, in the first installment of Pooley’s Picks I predicted the most productive players in New Jersey.  This match up features (admittedly) my biggest snub: Tavon Jones.  I can’t wait to watch Tavon in his first opportunity to prove me wrong.  The big guard can do it all and will have a huge test against one of my favorite backcourts on the east coast.  Let’s not forget the match up also features two great coaches: Phil Colicchio and Joe Mantegna.


Bergen Catholic v St. Benedict’s:  Mark Taylor’s team is led by impressive Syracuse commit Bourama Sidibe and fab frosh Noah Farrakhan.  Billy Armstrong’s team is led by two senior guards Gabe Stefanini (Columbia) and Taj Benning (Fairfield).  Something has to give here.  This is the most evenly matched game of the weekend, and one I really am excited to see.  Look for the X-factor, 6’8″ freshman Matt Zona, to jump onto the New Jersey seen.


Ja’Quaye James:  The small, heady PG will have his work cut out for him against Newark East Side.  First, the Red Raiders are one of the best defenses at the 2016 New Jersey Tip-Off.  Second, they are led by senior stopper Elijah Olaniyi and sophomore stud Anas Amos.  However, none of that matters to James, who has been taking on the country’s best for years.   Watch for some highlight reel excitement, some up-tempo basketball, and a lot of buckets from James.


Hun vs Union Catholic:  Just a solid match up.  Union Catholic is tough and physical, Hun is tough and physical.  Guard play from both schools will be the difference in the game.  Hun will try to keep Jordan Pierce of the offensive boards and Union Catholic will need to keep Tyler Washington and Desmond Cambridge away from the rim. Freshman guard Niels Lane, who got a lot of minutes at PSA Cardinals Showcase just two weeks ago, is another X-factor.


Calistus Anyichie 2016 New Jersey Tip-Off commit

Calistus Anyichie 2016 New Jersey Tip-Off commit

St. Mary’s Elizabeth Bigs: Certainly not a group the casual fan would talk about, but I think that’s about to change.  Both bigs, Calistus Anyichie and Casmir Ochiaka, have big upside and great coaching.  Perhaps a little underrated right now, I’m looking for them to have a breakout 2016 New Jersey Tip-Off.  As the season continues, look for colleges to start taking notice as well.

Jabri Abdur-Rahim: First of all, it’s not often you get to see a freshman play major minutes in a High School game.  Second of all, it’s less often you get to see a top player nationally impact a game.  Finally, both of those two will come together for the 2016 New Jersey Tip-Off, as Abdur-Rahim will do his best to live up to the hype.


Samba Diallo:  Will BLOW UP this season.  Been hearing his name a lot lately in some basketball circles.  Samba has started coming into his own. First, look for this kid to have his first big game of the year at the 2016 New Jersey Tip-Off.  Then, look for him to finish his sophomore year with all of the offers.  The big lefty can do it all, and legitimately play 4 different positions.


Special Guest this week, Event Director Eric Kessler:

Pooley Picks – Top New Jersey Basketball Players by Productivity

Pooley Picks

Top New Jersey Basketball Players: 10 Most Productive

Qualifications: There are a lot of ways to discuss Top New Jersey Basketball players, here we are talking strictly production.  The players below aren’t necessarily the Top 10 players in New Jersey, but rather players I’ve projected to put up the biggest numbers adjusted for competition. You cannot be on the list if you’re projected to average less than 10 points per game or if your only strength is scoring the ball (players who are projected for low assist AND rebound totals don’t qualify).  Lastly, we have adjusted for competition: Big numbers against a weaker schedule won’t get you in over someone with comparable numbers are against top teams.

Players are in no particular order. Please enjoy the first installment of Pooley Picks.

Nate Pierre-Louis: Nate’s an extremely physical guard who has the keys to the kingdom at one of New Jersey’s top schools.  Look for Nate to have big scoring nights on top of his ability to creep up near double digit assists and rebounds on some outings.  In addition to the situation being right at Roselle, Nate can also flat out play.  This guard can score from all three levels, distribute, and get big buckets in big games. It will be fun to watch the Temple commit this season as he proves he’s one of the top New Jersey basketball players.

Most productive when: He out hustles all competition and gets teammates involved consistently

Least productive when: Teams pack the lane and jumper doesn’t fall

Stat Line Projection: 21.1 ppg / 4.7 apg / 6.1 rpg / 3.4 spg / 0.8 bpg


Justyn Mutts: Big man for St. Augustine’s has the potential for some monster nights in 2016-17.  Proving himself with one of the best teams in NJ last year, Mutts had a 22-10-7 game against undefeated St. Anthony’s; along with multiple double-doubles and plenty of 5+ block games. High Point is getting a stat-stuffer with Mutts.

Most productive when: He plays inside then out and stays aggressive on the O-boards

Least productive when: Teams can force him to 15 feet plus and box out.

Stat Line Projection: 17.9 ppg / 1.7 apg / 10.1 rpg / 1.4 spg / 3.1 bpg


Scottie Lewis: Scottie has the chance to have the best stat sheet in New Jersey both in an individual game and over the course of the season.  A human highlight reel, he can also do everything and will be in a situation at The Ranney School where he has to for them to be successful.  He’ll get plenty of shots and even more rebounding and assist opportunities.  Even with adjusting for competition, Scottie will have such good numbers he is a no-brainer for this list. Looking ahead, watch for him to start creeping into one of the top New Jersey basketball players ever.

Most productive when: When he’s in the open floor and help-side defensive situations

Least productive when: Teams slow the game and play triangle and two against him and teammate Bryan Antoine

Stat Line Projection: 19.4 ppg / 5.1 apg / 11.1 rpg / 4.7 spg / 2.8 bpg


RJ Cole: Tough for anyone on a Coach Hurley team to make the list, as his teams often feature extremely well disciplined and balanced teams.  However, this seems like a year where one player may be required to do a little more for them to be as successful as they’ve been in the past.  Lucky for the Friars, Cole, a top New Jersey basketball player, is set up for one of those years.  RJ is a heady point, whose jump shot has turned a corner.  The lefty, committed to Howard, should have some big games against some of the best teams the Northeast has to offer.  May not boast the stats of some of the other players on the list but will score or assist on a huge % of his teams buckets.

Most productive when:  He’s given space on the perimeter or in ball screen situations

Least productive when: His team needs to grind out wins in the 40s and 50s

Stat Line Projection: 15.4 ppg / 5.7 apg / 3.4 rpg / 2.9 spg / 0.4 bpg


Elijah Barnes: Looking to repeat as Shore Conference Champs, Mater Dei’s 6’7” big man can do a little bit of everything.  Most importantly, Barnes can do a lot of rebounding and scoring.  Elijah put up decent numbers on an extremely well-rounded, well-coached team last year.  Barnes is poised for a huge individual season (along with teammate Kenny Jones) in 2016-17. Princeton looks to be getting a tough big man who can do a little bit of everything.

Most productive when:  He’s attacking the glass, inside of 15 feet and then steps out

Least productive when: He falls in love with perimeter game or floats on the floor

Stat Line Projection: 18.7 ppg / 2.7 apg / 11.4 rpg / 1.6 spg / 2.4 bpg


Jalen Carey:  With Immaculate Conception getting better and deeper there may be a few less opportunities to score, but Jalen’s overall game should flourish.  Arguably the best scorer in New Jersey (I wouldn’t argue against it), Carey is an explosive athlete, with some of the best downhill moves in high school basketball as well as a consistent mid-range shooter with a developing 3-pt jumper.  Expect some games in the 30’s and a lot of wins for his high school team this year, led by the only junior on the list.

Most productive when:  He has the ball in his hand. Period.

Least productive when:  He’s forced off the ball and required to only shoot long jump shots.

Stat Line Projection: 22.6 ppg / 3.9 apg / 7.1 rpg / 3.6 spg / 0.9 bpg


Bryan Antoine: Bryan is a scoring PG who just happens to be 6’4” with an unbelievable feel for the game.  Considering he’s going to touch the ball every possession this season I know big games are on the way.  Huge scoring and assist numbers are a certainty from Bryan, in a league where guys will not be able to stay in front of him.  Along with teammate Scottie Lewis, and an older and stronger supporting cast, look for these big numbers to translate into wins against tougher teams deep into 2017.

Most productive when:  He can get going from deep and consistently get to the line.

Least productive when:  Teams can force contested jump shots and guard w/o fouling.

Stat Line Projection: 24.6 ppg / 6.1 apg / 6.4 rpg / 3.8 spg / 1.1 bpg


Gabe Stefanini:  The Italian import had a breakout 2016, both in HS and AAU.  The 6’3” Columbia commit, can play three positions and is hard to stop at all of them.  Not the fastest guard, Gabe’s game is built on deception, a high basketball IQ, and an ever improving jump shot.  His numbers may not be as gaudy as some of the others on this list, but with an extremely deep Bergen Catholic roster and tough schedule, look for Gabe to be balanced in all 5 major categories and lead the crusaders to a lot of wins.

Most productive when:  He plays under control, with his head up, and gets to the foul line.

Least productive when:  He forces early in games and gets into his own head.

Stat Line Projection: 14.1 ppg / 5.1 apg / 6.3 rpg / 2.7 spg / 0.6 bpg


Nick Richards: From a production standpoint, I was close to leaving Nick off the list.  For years, Nick has been a top recruit in the nation, and currently holds the number one spot in New Jersey; however, the statistics and impact on the game up until now hasn’t always been there.  That is about to change though.  With this being his senior year, his team playing perhaps the toughest schedule of any team in New Jersey, a recent commitment to Kentucky, and Pat’s losing inside factors Fatir Hines and Cyril Langevine: Nick will be up for more minutes, blocks, rebounds, and points. Not to mention the fact his game has made great strides the last few months.

Most productive when:  He stays out of foul trouble and runs the floor rim to rim.

Least productive when:  He gets caught in that middle 8-15 ft. range

Stat Line Projection: 12.6 ppg / 0.9 apg / 12.1 rpg / 1.6 spg / 4.1 bpg


Elijah Olaniyi is one of the top New Jersey Basketball Players

Elijah Olaniyi is one of the top New Jersey Basketball Players

Elijah Olaniyi: Definitely a surprise to some on the production list, but Elijah has begun to separate himself from other NJ wings.  The Stonybrook commit has taken a below average jumper and turned it into a strength.  The energizer bunny, he not only plays hard every second, but he has a nose for the ball.  Never afraid to attack the rim or take tough shots, Elijah will jump about 50% in scoring and slightly improve on an unreal rebounding campaign in 2015-16, which include five consecutive double-doubles. If you watch him play he’ll convince you he’s a top New Jersey basketball player.

Most productive when:  He takes and makes good shots and gets to the foul line

Least productive when:  Opposing Teams can keep him off the glass and out of transition

Stat Line Projection: 15.1 ppg / 2.3 apg / 10.9 rpg / 2.1 spg / 1.1 bpg


Top 5 Snubs:

Tavon Jones – Unbelievable competitor and scorer.  Will lead Linden to another long playoff run.

Reason: I’m only allowed to have 10 players on the list.

Bourama Sidibe – Big time prospect who will rebound and block shots with the best of them.

Reason: Very difficult schedule will limit scoring opportunities; aggressive play will lead to foul trouble.

Deng Gak – Top level prospect, who developed a ton last year with Blair and PSA.

Reason: Don’t see him cracking 10 pts or reb with a great five at Blair who can all score and rebound.

Ja’Quaye James – One of the best scorers in the state in 2015-2016 and a good enough distributor.

Reason: Teams will start to key on little guard, assist and scoring numbers could dip.

Justin Minaya – Originally on the list, great all around guard with a bright future.  Major sleeper!

Reason: He’ll have better numbers than a couple on the list, but adjusting for competition hurts.


Other Notes:

Difficult to leave Jordan Pierce off a list of top New Jersey basketball players.  However, when it comes to productivity I don’t know if he’ll have the other stats.  Jordan plays hard and records a lot of double-doubles.  The big three at Hudson (Quinerly, Muhammad, King) are all unbelievable talents.  However, for Marinello’s team to win they will share many of the stats needed to be on this list.  Isaiah Wong will be a front runner for this list next year, Notre Dame guard is great.

Patrick School guards (Harris, McClary, Walker) will be in a Hudson Catholic like scenario: talented backcourt, with only one ball. Big nights but not enough counting numbers for Rice’s big three.  George Visconti, crazy scorer who had 5 30 point games last year, just doesn’t quite have the strength of schedule but could average 25+ again this year. Finally, Nazreon Reid, a top 10 player to watch for certain but I don’t expect consistent enough numbers to justify jumping one of the other candidates.

Hoop Group Happenings 11/15


   “I’ve got a theory that if you give 100% all of the time, some how things will work out in the end” 

-Larry Bird

 Here at the Hoop Group we are committed to helping young players achieve their basketball dreams. Our Hoop Group Happenings Newsletter will give players, parents, and coaches tools to help every player succeed!
The NBA Hoop Group Alumni of the Week

James Harden


Harden recorded a triple-double in 2 of 3 games last week. This #HGAlum is averaging 30ppg 13apg and 8rpg so far this season! 

Hoop Group Alumni In The NBA

Hoop Group Commitment of the Week 

Nick Richards (Kentucky)

The #12 player in the ESPN Rankings, commited to Kentucky last week. The 6’11 center and #HGAlum stars at The Patrick School where he leads one of the most talented groups in the country.

Hoop Group Commitments

Connect With Us!

Recruiting With Rob Kennedy: Coach Kennedy gives every player some things to think about before signing early! 
Drills and Skills: Coach Tiny Green shows you a creative drill to improve your ball handling and position! 
Hoop Group Alumni of the Week: Every week we will decide who is the #HGAlum of the week! Check out who got it this week: 

Know someone who attended a Hoop Group Event and has committed to a Division I, II, or III school? 

Email us at Curran@hoopgroup.com

or tweet at us @TheHoopGroup

Check out our Camp Store, now online! 

Hoop Group Happenings Newsletter 11/7


“I’ve always believed that if you put in the work, good   results will come.” 
-Michael Jordan
 Here at the Hoop Group we are committed to helping young players achieve their basketball dreams. Our Hoop Group Happenings Newsletter will give players, parents, and coaches tools to help every player succeed!
The NBA Hoop Group Alumni of the Week

D’Angelo Russell (Lakers) 
Russell averaged 16ppg and 5apg while leading a young Lakers team to a 2-1 week, including a win over the NBA title favorite Golden State Warriors! 
Hoop Group Alumni In The NBA
Hoop Group Commitment of the Week 

Antwan Walker (Georgetown)
Walker, a two time Washington D.C. player of the year and #HGAlum has committed to Georgetown University. Walker is a postgraduate at Hargrave Military Academy this season.
Hoop Group Commitments

Connect With Us!

Recruiting With Rob Kennedy: Coach Kennedy shares some of his recruiting expertise for anyone looking to play college basketball! 
Coaches Corner: Coach Mike Rice brings you two quick hitting plays in this weeks Coaches Corner! 
Hoop Group VIDEO Rewind: Hoop Group Future All-American Camp brings together some of the best talent in the country! With the best exposure, competition, and instruction the dream of playing college basketball starts at Hoop Group FAA Camp!  
Know someone who attended a Hoop Group Event and has committed to a Division I, II, or III school? 
Email us at Curran@hoopgroup.com
or tweet at us @TheHoopGroup
Check out our Camp Store, now online! 

Hoop Group Happenings for the Holidays


Hoop Group Happenings

Elite CampSkills CampHeadquartersTournamentsAlumniBlog

“If you’re afraid to fail, you don’t deserve to be successful.” – Charles Barkley

Recruiting with Rob Kennedy: Tips for Underclassmen

Hoop Group Alumni Players of the Week

We break down our players of the week. From NBA, Division 1, Small College, High School and Grammar School, watch as we tell you who you voted our #HGAlum players of the week

Coaches Corner: Hostage Finishing Drill & Baseline Out of Bounds Set

Mike Rice provides you with your weekly drill and play of the week in our coaches corner!

Basketball Instruction: L Cut Rip Through Series

A throwback for this week’s instructional drill. Are you in shape for the season? Want to put it to the test? Take a peek at the conditioning drill used by Hall of Fame Coach Bob Hurley!

From The Vault: University of Connecticut women’s coach Geno Auriemma teaches at Hoop Group’s coaches clinic. One of the best college coaches on both the men’s and women’s side! 

Upcoming Events

NBA Alumni of the Week

Kyle Lowry (Toronto Raptors) 16 pts, 5 asts

Luol Deng (Miami Heat) 18 pts, 9 rebs

D’Angelo Russell (Los Angeles Lakers) 19 pts, 7 rebs, 4 asts

Karl Anthony Towns (Minnesota Timberwolves) 25 pts, 10 rebs

NCAA Alumni of the Week

Division 1

Shane Richards (Manhattan) 19 points, 8 rebounds

Mandell Thomas (Fordham) 27 points

Cat Barber (NC State) 25 points, 5 rebounds, 6 assists

Kenny Kaminsky (Ohio) 31 points

Small College

BJ Andrews (Clarion) 19 points

Tyreece Brice (St Leo University) 18 pts, 7 rebs

Essien Epps (Jon Jay) 22 points

Tony Kynard (Tiffin) 29 points

And congratulations to Ryan Gaynor on his commitment to play at Muhlenberg College next year! Always happy to hear another former camper achieve their dreams of playing college basketball!

High School Alumni of the Week

Lamar Stevens (Roman Catholic)

Rasir Bolton

James Butler

Christian David (Vermont Academy) 

Previous Week:

Ryan Myers

Noah Charles

Zaakir Williamson

A-Fatir Connor

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Hoop Group Happenings: December 14th


Hoop Group Happenings

Elite CampSkills CampHeadquartersTournamentsAlumniBlog

“Every accomplishment stats with the decision to try.”

Recruiting with Rob Kennedy: Tips for Juniors

From the Vault:

A special bonus video in this week’s from the vault. ESPN analyst and former NBA player Tim Legler speaks at Hoop Group Elite Camp! Check out his words of wisdom!

Hoop Group Alumni Players of the Week

We break down our players of the week. From NBA, Division 1, Small College, High School and Grammar School, watch as we tell you who you voted our #HGAlum players of the week

Basketball Instruction: Bob Hurley Conditioning Drill

A throwback for this week’s instructional drill. Are you in shape for the season? Want to put it to the test? Take a peek at the conditioning drill used by Hall of Fame Coach Bob Hurley!

Upcoming Events

Give the Gift of Camp

Holiday Showdown

NJ Tip Off Showcase

HGHQ Weekly Instruction Programs

Check out the Hoop Group Men’s League Coming to HGHQ!

NBA Alumni of the Week

Kevin Durant (Oklahoma City Thunder) 25 pts, 12 rebs, 10 asts

Paul George (Indiana Pacers) 33 pts, 8 rebs, 6 asts

Jared Sullinger (Boston Celtics) 11 pts 20 rebs

JJ Redick (Los Angeles Clippers) 31 points

NCAA Alumni of the Week

Division 1

Shakir Brown (James Madison) 30 pts, 8 rebs

James Daniel (Howard) 27 points

Zack Denny (Bowling Green) 18 points, 7 assists

Earl Potts (Farleigh Dickinson) 20 pts, 5 rebs, 5 asts

Tim Coleman (NJIT) 27 pts, 12 rebs

Small College

Jordan McDaniel (Rutgers-Newarl) 29 points, 10 rebs

Sameem Swift (Goldy Beacon College) 19 pts

Rocco Cristiano (Pitt-Greensburg) 19 pts, 6 rebs

Joey Feinberg (Drew) 24 pts

High School Alumni of the Week

Cole Anthony (Archbishop Molloy)

Shamori Ponds (Thomas Jefferson)

Ty Jerome (Iona Prep) 

Jared Bynum (Georgetown Prep)

Anthony Cowan (St Johns College HS)

Junior Elite Featured Players 

Previous Week:

Noah Cutler

Carlos Lopez

Tahron Allen

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Hoop Group Happenings: 12/7/15 Edition

Hoop Group Happenings

Elite CampSkills CampHeadquartersTournamentsAlumniBlog

“Don’t let what other people think, decide who you are.”  – Dennis Rodman

From the Vault:

Hall of Famer Larry Bird teaching campers at Eastern Invitational Camp, now known as Hoop Group Elite. 


#CoachesCorner: 5 Man Entry Play

Coach Mike Rice brings you the play of the week. This week’s play is a “quick hitter” for your post player to get an easy bucket or post touch. Take a look!

Basketball Instruction: Ball Handling with Coach Tobin Anderson

This weeks instruction comes straight from Hoop Group Skills Camp this summer. St. Thomas Aquinas coach Tobin Anderson teaches campers a great half court ball handling drill!

Upcoming Events

NBA Alumni of the Week

Paul George (Indiana Pacers) 39 pts, 4 rebs

Rudy Gay (Sacramento Kings) 20 pts, 7 rebs

John Wall (Washington Wizards) 16 pts 4 asts

Marcus Morris (Detroit Pistons 24 pts 14 rebs

Damian Lillard (Portland Tralblazers) 25 pts 9 rebs

NCAA Alumni of the Week

Division 1

Malachi Alexander (Holy Cross) 17 pts, 5 rebs

Isaiah Briscoe (Kentucky) 18 pts, 7 rebs

AJ English (Iona) 46 points

Wade Baldwin (Vanderbilt) 20 pts, 4 rebs, 3 asts

Nick Faust (Long Beach State) 20 pts, 5 rebs, 5 steals, 5 asts)

Small College

Peter Aguilar (Concordia) 31 points

Jamir Ferebee (Mt. Saint Vincent) 17 pts, 11 rebs

Rasheed Moore (East Stroudsberg) 18 pts, 10 rebs

Tyquon Rolon (Lemoyne) 23 pts, 8 rebs

Seger Bonifant (West Liberty) 22 pts

High School Alumni of the Week

Immanuel Quickley (John Carroll School)

Silvio De Sousa (Monteverde Academy)

Chuba Ohams (Putnam Science

Dhamir Cosby-Roundtree (Neumann Gorreti)

Wabissa Bede (Cushing Academy)

Junior Elite Featured Players 

Previous Week:

Zach Rocco

Zahree Harrison

Lafayette Williams

Ben Ordonez

Lloyd Baskin

Francisco Paulino

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Hoop Group Happenings: 11/30 Edition

Hoop Group Happenings

Elite CampSkills CampHeadquartersTournamentsAlumniBlog

“Everything negative- pressure, challenges – is all an opportunity for me to rise.”  – Kobe Bryant

Recruiting with Rob Kennedy: Tips for Unsigned Seniors

Don’t Miss Our Cyber Monday Sale!

Save Today on all camps at Hoop Group. From Elite Camps, to Skills in the Poconos, to camps, clinics and tournaments in Hoop Group Headquarters. Cyber Monday is the biggest savings of the year at Hoop Group. See all the deals here!


#HGAlum of the Week

In a new segment on Hoop group Happenings, Rob Kennedy, along with Bryan Weber and Joe Gutowski, breakdown the past week’s Hoop Group Alumni of the week! Check out our nominees!

Basketball Instruction: 5 Spot Basketball Shooting

Upcoming Events

NBA Alumni of the Week

Eric Gordon (New Orleans Pelicans) 20 pts, 4 asts

Andrew Wiggins (Minnesota Timberwolves) 32 pts, 6 rebs

Ray Felton (Dallas Mavericks) 16 pts 4 asts

CJ McCollum (Portland Trailblazers) 28 points

NCAA Alumni of the Week

Division 1

Alex Rosenberg (Columbia) 15 pts, 4 assts

Georges Niang (Iowa State) 19 pts

Derrick Jones (UNLV) 26 pts, 10 rebs

Brandon Taylor (Penn State) 19 points

Small College

Kaison Randolph (Philly U) 22 pts, 11 rebs

Mike Murray (St. Joe’s Brooklyn) 20 pts

Tyaire Ponzo-Meek (Wilmington) 28 pts

Jake Wittig (Rochester) 18 pts, 9 asts

High School Alumni of the Week

Kodye Pugh (Blair) 21 pts, 7 rebs

Wenyen Gabriel (Wilbraham & Monson) 21 points

Matthew Moyer (South Kent) 27 pts

Austin Meyer (Rouse High School) committed to Rice University

Junior Elite Featured Players 

Previous Week:

Ming Stevens

Jordan Hairston

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Hoop Group Happenings: Happy Thanksgiving!


Hoop Group Happenings

Elite Camp Skills Camp Headquarters Tournaments AlumniBlog

“What to do with a mistake – recognize it, admit it, learn from it, forget it.” – Dean Smith

Recruiting with Rob

Kennedy: A Thanksgiving Message

From the Vault:

This week’s “From the Vault” does not go as far back as some. 5 St. Anthony seniors signed their Letters of Intent on Monday to play Division 1 and 2 basketball. 4 of the 5 played in the Poconos over the summer with Coach Hurley at his Hoop Group Skills Bob Hurley Camp. Always play against top talent, and learn from one of the best coaches to ever coach the game! Congratulations to coach and his players!

Basketball Instruction: Change of Direction Finishing

Know someone who attended a Hoop Group event and recently committed to a Division I, II or III school? Let us know! Email james@hoopgroup.com with their name and school let committed to! Help us give you the recognition you worked so hard for!

NBA Alumni of the Day

Which NBA Alum should win player of the week honors? Vote now on Twitter! Choose between Kobe Bryant and Andre Drummond.

Click the image above or VOTE HERE

NCAA #HGAlum of the Week

Division 1
Tyler Lewis (Butler) 17, 3, 2
Daniel Ochefu (Villanova) 17,10
Kennedy Meeks (UNC) 16,8
Small College
Jair Green (Cabrini) 20, 8
Dawan Lighty (Caldwell) 17 pts
Rashaan Spencer (Centennary) 26 pts

Upcoming Events

Last Week:

Karim Coulibaly

Julius Phillips

Jacob O’Connell

Jihad Watson

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