2015 Academic Elite 1 Player Awards

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Academic Elite 1 Came to an end today. Here are the players who walked away with awards as a result of their hard work all week long.

Award/Player
(Ivy League award winner is first)
ClassSchoolHometown
Station Star
Bryan Knapp2017Charles E. Smith Jewish Day SchoolRockville, MD
Jonah Gutman2019Walter JohnsonBethesda, MD
Station Star
Jake Betlow2019Gill St. BernardGladstone, NJ
Morgan Edwards2018Mountain RidgeFrostburg, MD
Mr. Hustle
Dylan Klein2017American Studies HSBronx, NY
Rafael Rosario2017Tasis DoradoVega Alta, PR
Most Improved Player
Ryan Graziano2016Commack HSCommack, NY
Nathan Owens2017Grace Christian AcademyWaldorf, MD
Most Outstanding Player
Ceasar Dejesus2016Impact AcademyYork, PA
Most Valuable Player
Rick'Keem Mixson2016St. Mary's Elizabeth, NJ
Rychell Jenga2017Taxi SchoolDorado, PR
All-Star Game MVP
Ceasar Dejesus2016Impact AcademyYork, PA
Joseph Knox2017Community SchoolDavidson, NC

2015 Academic Elite All-Stars

Just like that, our first camp session has come to an end. Feels like we were just waking up for registration yesterday. Amazingly, four days have flown by and today, some players are leaving with awards and all-star selections. Here are the all-stars from both leagues this week.

Patriot League All-Stars

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PlayerClassHigh SchoolHometown
Daniel Roche2017Trevor DayNew York, NY
Oluwaseum Wilson2017Stroudsburg East Stroudsburg, PA
Jason Larranaga2019GlenfieldMontclair, NJ
Saxton Thuston2017BentonSaint Joseph, MO
Jared Achterberg2017Eastern YorkWrightsville, PA
Matthew Asenjo2017St. Anthony'sJersey City, NJ
Duncan Trerotola2017SalesianumWilmington, DE
Joseph Knox2017Community SchoolDavidson, NC
Rychell Janga2017TaxiDorado, PR
Max Oppenheim2017Walt WhitmanBethesda, MD
Sami Ghazzi2017RadnorRadnor, PA
Justin Fishman2017Trevor DayNew York, NY
Carlos Aleman2017Colegio San Ignacia de LoyolaSan Juan, PR
Kyle Sullivan2017SpringfieldSpringfield, PA
Joshua Szott2017DelbartonMorristown, NJ
Ikenna Achufusi2017The Heights SchoolPotmac, MD
Jacob O'Connell2019EasternVoorhees, NJ
Justin Figueroa2017Nazareth RegionalBrooklyn, NY
David Goldman2017Riverdale Country SchoolBronx, NY
Ronald Moore2017St. John Paul The GreatDumfries, VA
Bryan Karl2017HempfieldHempfield, PA
Luke Nedrow2018Pittsburgh CatholicPittsburgh, PA
Drew Greene2018Chapel HillChapel Hill, NC
Joshua Roberts2017Bishop LoughlinBrooklyn, NY

Ivy League All-Stars

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Ivy League All-Stars
Michael Rice2016Point Pleasant BeachPoint Pleasant, NJ
Justin Porter2016Ewing HSEwing, NJ
Jake Forrester2018Kiski PrepHarrisburg, PA
Yannic Williams2016Holy Cross HSQueens, NY
Eric Savage2016South BrunswickMonmouth Junction, NJ
Dwight Whitlock2016UndecidedSaltsburg, PA
Mikey Dixon2016Sanford SchoolWilmington, DE
George Papas2016Union CatholicScotch Plains, NJ
Ethan Miller2017Upper MerionKing of Prussia, PA
Ennis Thomas2016Westerville SouthWesterville, OH
Mark Lutz2016Christian Brothers AcademySyracuse, NY
Chaz Platt2016Holy CrossFlushing, NY
Sean Graytok2016Latrobe HSLatrobe, PA
Antone Walker2017Friends CentralWynnewood, PA
Ryan McTamney2016La SallePhiladelphia, PA
William Miller2016Halifax County HSSouth Boston, VA
Jordyn Owens2017St. Peter's PrepJersey City, NJ
Ceasar Dejesus2016Impact AcademyYork, PA
Rick'Keem Mixson2016St. Mary's ElizabethElizabeth, NJ
Cutch Ellis2016BenedictineRichmond, VA
Trenton Richardson2016Carmel HSCarmel, IN
Nick Lord2016 Penn ManorMillersville, PA

Jake Betlow: HG One-on-One

Reaing,PA– Jake Betlow has not played a varsity minute in his career….he hasn’t even played a high school minute. Jake will start his freshman year at Gill St. Bernard’s in New Jersey this fall. While Jake hasn’t played a high school game, he has begun to make a name for himself at Top 100 events and on the AAU circuit. He’s a name to remember because his high school future should be a bright one in the state of New Jersey. See our interview with Jake below:

Academic Elite 1 LIVE Blog

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Reading, PA– It’s finally here! After all the hours of work and preparation leading up to it, camp season is finally upon us. The summer will start off with our first session of Academic Elite Camp. Academic Camp will bring together a perfect mix of brains and basketball this week. Let’s see what these players have in store for us!

Thursday, July 2nd

1:30 pm

We will wrap up the live blog now! Championships have been won in both divisions. Congratulations to our winning teams and coaches. Championship team pictures will be posted in the recap. Also be sure to look out for our all-star rosters and award winners, coming later tonight.

A big thank you to all the coaches, parents and most importantly, players for making this week of came so great. If this is any indication of things to come, we are going to have a heck of a summer! Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for full camp coverage. See you next week for Session 1 of Elite Camp!

1:12 pm


12:34 pm

Ivy and Patriot League championships have tipped off! Games being played alongside one another in the Bollman Gymnasium. Lot of excitement coming from both courts. Awesome way to end camp.

11:00 am
Two potential all-stars playing well in the semifinal. Dwight Whitlock is playing suffocating defense, locking up Ceasar Dejesus. Meanwhile Rick’Keem Mixson is doing it all for his team. He’s getting steals, scoring and facilitating. Could we see these two square off in the final?

9:34 am
First set of games starting up for the day. Playoffs, playoffs, playoffs this morning before lunch.

8:55 am

Yesterday, Brent Pelella sat down with some of our Day 2 Top Performers and talked with them. Here is that video:

8:21 am

Last day of camp means championships, awards and all-stars, but first, stations! No days off in getting better. Let the fun begin! –@TheHoopGroup

Wednesday, July 1st

9:29 pm

Third day in the books, championships, all-star games and award ceremonies to take place tomorrow! Feels like registration just started, but here we are. Ready to make the last day our best.

9:12 pm Mark Lutz, 2016 from Christian Brothers Academy in NY, having a nice end to his day. Just buried a three and then met a driver at the rim and turned his shot away. Impressive chain of events for the 6’3 guard/wing. –@TheHoopGroup 8:28 pm Dwight Whitlock was an all-star last summer at Academic Elite 1. He’s back and has improved on his game! See his interview here: HG On-on-One: Dwight Whitock 7:48 pm As if we haven’t said his name enough, Mikey Dixon warms up for his final game of the day 7:12 pm Potential Day 3 Top Performer?

6:23 pm Playoffs are approaching, these last game sets of the day will help us determine who can still win a championship tomorrow!

5:05 pm The Hoop Group: great place for instruction, even better place for exposure! Over 50 colleges have checked in at Elite Camp! Look Who’s Watching! 3:52 pm Two players squaring off: complete opposites, but both intriguing. Winston Delk (West Windsor North ’16) showing a tight handle and quick change of direction with the ball, while Daylen Wiggins (Burke Catholic ’16) is attacking the glass on both ends very hard. Solid play from them both. –@TheHoopGroup 2:19pm Following the lunch break, Hall of Fame coach Bob Hurley is here to speak with the camp. Never a bad time to listen to coach talk about the game. 12:04 pm In case you’ve missed it, check out the Academic Elite 1 album on Facebook!

11:49 am
Rick’Keem Mixson has been enjoying a good week of camp, his first of many Elite Camps this summer. Watch an interview with him here:

Rick’Keem Mixson Interview

11:01 am
No better place to get instruction than the Hoop Group. Bob Hurley heads to Elite Camp for a few hours and former Virginia Tech coach Seth Greenberg is in the Poconos lecturing Skills Camp!

9:44 am We’re bringing back out #HGElite Poll of the Day. Today’s question: With NBA free agency starting up, where will LaMarcus Aldridge land? Share your thoughts!

8:13 am

Another full day of basketball coming as we get ready for Day 3 of Academic Elite Camp. See which guys will stand out amongst the rest and what teams will continue their path to a championship.

Another great showing at early bird workouts and we’re just getting ready to begin stations. Stay tuned!

Tuesday, June 30th

9:38 pm
And with that the day is done. over 12 hours of basketball in the books. Stay tuned for some more Top Performers from Day 2, as well as more player interviews. If you missed anything from the day, check us out on Twitter and Instagram. Good night!

8:57 pm
Brent Pelella of CT Hoops News and the Hoop Group sits down with some Day One Top Performers to discuss their camp experience.

8:06 pm

Seeing a lot of Jersey players perform here in PA. Brandon Oladapo (Seton Hall Prep ’16) is great in transition. Guard glides on the court and is a terrific facilitator. Good all around guard.

6:41 pm

Yannic Williams, 6’7 big showing a nice shooting touch #HGElite

A photo posted by Hoop Group (@hoopgroup) on

5:54 pm Mikey Dixon is a player we saw a few times this Spring at several Jam Fest tournaments. He showed the ability to be an elite scorer, and he’s proving it again this week. Such a smooth stroke and then has the ability to get to the rim. He can score in bunches. –@JN_Albano 4:28 pm College coaches lined up along the gym recruiting guys. Over 30 coaches in the building right now looking for their next big “get.” IMG_1433 3:33 pm We’re back after a break in the action. Campers got to rest their legs and get a valuable lesson in terms of academics for a few hours. Back on the courts for afternoon games. Yannic Williams (Holy Cross ’16) and Ennis Thomas (Westerville South ’16) are two players to keep an eye out for during the 3:15 game sets. 2:12 pm Our newest additions to our Hoop Group alumni NBA Family. Karl-Anthony Towns and D’Angelo Russell picked 1 and 2 in this year’s NBA Draft. Screen Shot 2015-06-30 at 4.38.46 PM 12:51 pm Games are coming to an end this morning. Saw some good, competitive games and some players make a case for Day 2 Top Performers. Little break in the action as guys will partake in Academic stations. Training the mind and body here at camp. 12:02 pm Academic Elite 1 is a great chance for players to get seem by very high academic D2 & D3 colleges. Michael Rice (Point Pleasant Beach ’16) is one of them. Currently being looked at by a number of high academic, and talented D3 programs.

  Looking forward to watching Michael Rice on Day 2 of the Academic Elite Camp #HGElite   A photo posted by Hoop Group (@hoopgroup) on

11:17 am Games are underway for the day. Early on it was Colin Sareyka (Gloucester County Christian ’16) impressing with some fancy handles. Now sharp shooter Jake Betlow (Gill St. Bernard ’19) is playing well. Jake has not even played a high school game yet, but he’s grabbed some attention at camp. Big time player from Jersey in the future.-@TheHoopGroup 10:36 am Check out a few guys who played well during tryout games yesterday? Will they continue to impress as more coaches come in? Will new players step up? We’ll find out!

Academic Elite Day 1 Top Performers

9:39 am It was an offensive morning in stations as players worked on getting open and attacking the hoop. Rain cuts stations short though, and we will begin game play. IMG_1142 9:01 am Always great to make ‘optional,’ mandatory. Guys putting in work this morning during optional Early Bird Morning Workouts!

8:39 am We’re back for more hoops! Day 2 of Academic Elite Camp has started and we’re ready for our first full day of basketball. Attendance has been taken and players are breaking into their station groups. Let’s get going! –@TheHoopGroup

Monday, June 29th

10:11 pm Coach Harney’s lecture comes to an end and that wraps up Day 1 of Academic Elite Camp. Campers head back to their rooms to rest up for another long day of hoops tomorrow. Early bird work outs begin at 7:15 am. See you then! 9:52 pm

  Ennis Thomas (Westerville North ’17) working with Coach Chris Harney in Day 1’s coaches lecture #HGElite   A photo posted by Hoop Group (@hoopgroup) on

9:27 pm One of the best coaches in Division 3, teaching the drills that one of the best in the NBA practices

8:52 pm Trial games are done for the day. Players will be placed on their teams for the rest of the week tomorrow morning. Now it’s time to end the night with a special guest lecture. Tonight we will hear from the head coach at St. Mary’s College, Chris Harney. In 10 years at St. Mary’s, Coach has amassed a record of 202-79, and has won four conference championships! Campers can learn a lot from him. –@TheHoopGroup 8:12 pm Always good to see guys getting after it. Competitive action thus far.

7:30 pm With our first glimpse at players in game action, we’re seeing a wide range of talent so far. High major Division 1s all the way down to strong Division 3 players. Rick’Keem Mixson (St. Mary’s ’16) and Trenton Richardson (Carmel ’16) are two players who looked strong on day one. –@TheHoopGroup 6:42 pm Breaking in the outdoor courts this afternoon:

Academic Elite Camp 1 #HGElite   A photo posted by Hoop Group (@hoopgroup) on

5:34 pm Excited to have ESPN’s 12th ranked player in the class of 2017, Lonnie Walker, back at camp. You’ll be hearing his name a lot this week. HG_OFFERS_WALKER 5:10 pm Player head shots are up on Facebook!

3:34 pm
Finally some basketball! Players getting warmed up with stations before breaking up for game play. Yannic Williams, 6’7 from Queens, NY shown below working on his mid range game:

2:56 pm Campers getting a dose of academics before stations. John Ditsky is leading a college info seminar right now. –@TheHoopGroup 2:15 pm President of the Hoop Group, Rob Kennedy, welcomes campers to Academic Elite 1! IMG_3532 12:37 pm Nearing the end of registration, great turn out for our first camp session of the summer. Guys are itching to get out there and start playing! –@TheHoopGroup

10:46 am
There certainly is a lot of excitement in the gym this morning!

Academic Elite 1: Day 3 Top Performers

Our last full day is finished and tomorrow we look forward to awards, championships and all-star games. Will we see some of these names be called tomorrow? Only time will tell.

2016 Ryan O’Neil 5’11” (Pelham Memorial/ Pelham, NY)
What Ryan lacks in height, he makes up for in leadership. The fiery point guard has been guiding his team all week through energetic play and strong communication. He is able to make shots all over the floor, as well as penetrate the defense. On the other side of the ball, Ryan is relentless. He will be a very impactful player at the college level.

2016 Ryan Graziano 6’2” (Commack HS/ Commack, NY)

Ryan plays a lot bigger than his height. While he can play both inside and outside, he is most effective slashing to the rim. His shot is more than serviceable from the perimeter and he plays with a physicality that bothers opponents. At the next level, he will be most productive as a wing as long as he keeps improving his speed and athleticism.
2018 Michael Schretter 6’6” (Ridgewood HS / Ridgewood, NJ)
Michael is a little raw, but only a rising sophomore, he has time to hone his skills. Michael is 6’6 and while he can post his man on the block, he impressed the most from the elbow. His jump shot looked smooth when he was able to step into it. He also showed the ability to catch, rip through and drive to the rim.
2016 Matt McGillan 6’2” (Ephrata Senior HS/ Ephrata, PA)
Think of Matt as a security code for a safe full of cash. He is as consistent as they come; winning 50-50 balls, fighting for rebounds and shutting down players on defense. His shot has been good this week, but he earns his money as a player who can do a little of everything. Matt would be a good fit for any program who is looking for a leader.
2017 Michael Pollard 6’1” (Nazareth Regional / Brooklyn, NY)
The guard has great athleticism and put it on display today. He was extremely effective when opponents failed to box him out; he got running starts and crashed the offensive boards hard, keeping plays alive for his team. His athleticism also paid off on defense, when he jumped passing lanes and got easy steals.
2016 Brandan Gartland 6’3” (Webster-Schroeder HS/ Webster, NY)
Brandan is able to contribute to his team in many ways. He is excellent on the defensive end, and finds ways to get rebounds inside. On offense, he is a consistent shooter from deep and moves superbly off the ball. He will be heavily looked at throughout the next few days.
2016 Justin Porter 6’5” (Ewing HS / Ewing, NJ)
Justin probably could have been Top Performer one of the first two days, but he’s a Day 3 TP. Justin showed a little of everything. He can rebound with his 6’5 frame, lead a break a little, pass and score. He is a great help defender, and bailed his teammates out on numerous occasions. It’s been a good week for Justin
2016 Cutch Ellis 6’7” (Benedictine HS/ Richmond, VA)
Cutch started out the week playing a lot on the perimeter, making tough jump shots. However as things progressed, we were able to see his skills in the paint.  He finished over taller defenders and fought for rebounds every possession. His length and versatility at 6’7” is what makes him an interesting prospect for the next level. If he can continue to build muscle and compete inside he will be productive in college.
2016 Winston Delk 5’9” (West Windsor North / Plainsboro, NJ)
Winston is a point guard with great handles. He makes quick moves and can change direction fast as well. These factors help him get by defenders. He is also a solid finisher inside and has some athleticism that allows him to hang in the air and finish amongst the trees.
James Albano and Brent Pelella contributed to this article.

Dwight Whitlock: HG One-on-One

Reading, PA– Dwight Whitlock is familiar with Academic Elite Camp. The post grad was a session one attendee last summer, making the all-star game at camp’s end. One year later he’s back at camp and looking for a school that fits his style of play.

Dwight grabbed attention last summer with highlight reel dunks, but has built up his game more over the past year. As Dwight gets ready for a busy summer, we sat down with him to talk about his plans and recruitment.

Michael Rice: HG One-on-One

Reading, PA– Mike Rice Jr. is sought after by some very high academic, and basketball rich Division 3 programs. The rising senior has been in contact with schools such as Franklin & Marshall, Rochester, Williams and Colby, among others.

The guard will be seeing a lot of Hoop Group events this summer, as he will be back for Elite Camp, as well as play in several Hoop Group Jam Fests with his New Jersey Shoreshots AAU team.
See his full interview here:

Rick’Keem Mixson: Hoop Group Academic Elite One-on-One

Readng, PA– Rick’Keem Mixson hasn’t gotten the Division 1 offers he’s been hoping for, yet. But the guard from New Jersey plans to make a splash this summer by making a name for himself at Hoop Group Elite Camp.

Mixson has been one of the top players during Academic Elite Session 1 and hopes to continue his solid play well into the summer, as he will be at both Elite sessions in July too.

See our full interview with Ricky from Day 2 of Academic Camp:

Mikey Dixon: Hoop Group One-on-One

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Reading, PA– Mikey Dixon is a big time scorer. Name a way to put the ball in the hoop and he will go out there and do it.

Dixon already holds offers from Rider, Quinnipiac and Fairfield, but has interest from tons of other schools. The way he played this Spring and early this Summer, he should hold numerous offers by the end of the Live Period.

Mikey has been shining at Academic Elite Session 1 and will look to continue his hot play in July when he returns to Albright for the first Elite session.

See my whole interview with Mikey below:

Academic Elite 1: Day 2 Top Performers

On paper, day two of Academic Elite Camp is only a few hours longer than day one. But when you take out the registration and replace it with more basketball, and couple that with a start time of 8:00 am, it feels as if the day is twice as long as registration day. There’s no denying that today was a full day of hoops, and with it, we saw some guys begin to make names for themselves. Here are your Day 2 Top Performers:

2016 Mikey Dixon 5’11” (Sanford School / Wilmington, DE)
Mikey Dixon is an assassin. Most people who have seen him play know how lethal of a scorer he is; when he scores, he scores in bunches. In the night capper on day two, he erupted for 40 points, and scored every way possible. Got to the rim at will, connected from the outside, and hit step backs that he made look easy. While he put up high scoring numbers, Dixon wasn’t selfish, he showcased marvelous passing as well. He’s a player who will have more offers after this summer than the three he currently holds.

2017 Markus Stevenson 6’5” (Academy of New Church/ Bryn Athyn, PA)

Playing in the paint at 6’5” can be tough, but Markus Stevenson makes it look rudimentary. He strong body and excellent control allows him to establish position at will. He is a very good finished and can also extend beyond 15 feet. His versatility is something that every coach has loved about him thus far.

2016 Brandon Oladapo 6’0” (Seton Hall Prep / West Orange, NJ)

Brandon comes in at 6’0, but has length that makes him appear longer to his opposition. He plays a smooth game and rarely gets taken out of rhythm. He showed his good passing, racking up assists by delivering on time passes. Definitely showed the ability to run the show at the guard spot.

2016 Yannic Williams 6’7” (Holy Cross / Queens, NY)

Yannic showed toughness and finesse today. At 6’7 he got the ball in the paint and was able to finish over his left shoulder with a hook. He also bullied his way through defenders to finish while absorbing a lot of contact. His strength allows him to do that often. What separated him from other bigs, was his ability to knock down open threes as well. If given time, he can make teams pay for leaving him open.

2017 Jordyn Owens 6’0” (St. Peter’s Prep/ Jersey City, NJ)

Jordyn Owens is a high volume scorer with unlimited confidence. He has a proven jump shot to go along with an array of dribble moves. As he continues to improve on the defensive end, he will attract a lot of coaches looking for a playmaking guard.

2016 Khary Mauras 6’1” (Reading High School / Reading, PA)

While teammate Lonnie Walker nabs a lot of headlines in Reading, Khary Mauras is proving he can play college basketball as well. Khary is dangerous because he has such a quick first step. Take your eye off him for a second and he’s gone. If he’s able to get into the lane he’s a capable finisher as well. He showed time and time again how quick he can be.

2016 Hassan Folks 6’4” (Poly Prep / Brooklyn, NY)

Active. That is the best way to describe Hassan on the floor. He gets after it on both ends of the floor. He never gives up on loose balls and always attacks the glass on rebounds. As a result, he often finds the ball and is able to make plays for his team. If you need someone to win 50/50 balls for you, Hassan is one of the best at camp. Great motor on this player.

2016 Ennis Thomas 6’2” (Westerville South, Westerville, OH)

Ennis Thomas is enjoying a nice two days of camp so far. The Ohio native is showing off his athleticism so far, and has been fun to watch. Ennis is good on the break, where he can finish over players with swift moves to the hoop. He is a great finisher at the rim.

2016 Michael Rice 6’1” (Point Pleasant Beach HS/ Point Pleasant, NJ)

Michael is a lengthy guard who can put up points in bunches. His highly efficient perimeter game this week has caused defenders to extend their coverage. As a result, Rice has been able to show his ability to distribute to open teammates. If he keeps improving his quickness and athleticism he can become a high-level combo guard.

2019 Jake Betlow 5’11” (Gil St. Bernard’s/ Gladstone, NJ)

Jake is a rising star in the New Jersey area. As just an incoming freshman, he is widely considered as one of the best players at camp. Offensively, he is able to control the pace as well as create opportunities. He can shoot with range and is an extremely energetic defender. When all is said and done, he won’t have any problems finding a college who wants him.

2016 Chaz Platt 5’10” (Holy Cross/ Flushing, NY)

As a small guard, Chaz uses his excellent quickness to create problems on both sides of the ball. He has a consistent shooting stroke that makes him a big threat from deep. However, his main skill is his attacking style of play, which keeps people off-balance. Chaz will be able to help many college programs right away and scouts are starting to notice.

As always, we’ll be back tomorrow for Day Three Top Performers.

Also, if you missed some of Day One’s Top Performers describe their camp experience, watch it here.

 

James Albano and Brent Pelella contributed to this article