Tomorrow Winter 2 of Core Skills training will start. The 2nd session of Core Skills is much different that than the first session. It really is a session were much more teaching is involded and the players learn drills that they will most likely being doing until they play there last game.  Man to Man defense, Shell defense. Transistion drills both defense and offense. It’s a time for a player to build there IQ and also improve. But the 2nd session also weeds out kids.

After 5 weeks you get to know kids. It’s pretty easy to see what kids are locked in and focused on there development. There are kids who show up every week and grind. These are the kids who have that passion to get improve, coach them hard and they respond. Winter one core skills is really just a start, because some kids will disappear into the winter and move to setting that are more to there likening. They didn’t get enough attention, getting up on Saturdays became too much. There will be many  reasons why kids won’t return to Core Skills. Some will return and step up there game. These kids will find there journey a little easier one day, because of it. Core Skills always had a few surprises as some kids step up, like a Nicole Stafford and sadly some will slip backwards. But there is always that kid every year…I said every year. That comes out of nowhere to steal the show. It will be no different tomorrow….trust me.  Somebody we don’t known of will blow up. Just like one of the names that was on the college coaches cheat sheet. It’s a name shore fans will soon come to learn….KEMARI REYNOLDS.


When Kemari Reynolds showed up at Core Skills, she was just like any other 8th grader. She was hoping to improve her skills sets and play against some quality competition. Five weeks later, she is one of the best 8th graders I know  in all of New Jersey. Reynolds who moved from York, PA to New Jersey is the most explosive 8th grade guard I have seen in years. She reminds me of Sy Davis of Neptune and Rutgers fame. Her competitive edge and nature has overwhelmed the competition at core skills. She has been nothing short of sensational. She has been shooting star, that seems to have come from nowhere.

Kemari  Reynolds could be the best defensive guard to enter the shore, since Sy Davis and that’s just not talk folks. I watched some very talented players fall apart under her ball pressure. But it’s lighting quick speed and ability to finish at the rim that separates her from so many young guards. Her physical strength and will are things, I have not seen in a young player in a very long time folks. But she also has leadership qualities, because while many young kids have talent few have that combination of leadership and humbleness.



REYNOLDS and Mom hugging after winning 8th grade title

Miss Reynolds is very lucky, while many young kids get caught up in polictics and there parents are constantly trying to figure out what angle to play next. She has not seen or been part of any of it. But she better be careful, because EVERYONE is trying to gain her services these days. Some big and powerful AAU programs are hoping she joins there team. But for now her parents are tight lipped about her future. Her father is in the military, she and her mom are in no hurry to make such important decisions. But on a bigger note, she has not choose a high school, she is in the Lakehurst since moving to New Jersey. Folks I don’t care what high school this young lady attends….SHE PLAYING right out the gate and is a IMPACT. She is a program changing guard. A two way player who is not spoiled and willing to work…do you know many of those? I don’t.

A college coach called me after receiving his Core Skills Sheet. He asked me if Kemari Reynolds was “THAT GOOD?”  He mentioned that he had never seen anything about her. I explained she showed up out of the blue. I also explained something else, she has not touched the surface of what she can become. She is willing to work and do extra without playing up to coaches or others, SHE DOESN’T HAVE AN AGENDA.  She also did something for me that jumps off the page. Kemari Rynolds is got better each week in the skills session of Core Skills winter one. This is were she is special because some kids improve and some don’t. They get older, stronger and smarter but not always better. This kid has made a jump in 4 weeks, that you don’t see often.

There are those kids who get in the gym every day and shoot. These kids are going to be special, because shooting solves a lot of problems. There shooting skills get better every time I see them. There is no doubt their impact on high school basketball will be huge next year. I often don’t see kids during the winter as much, but often ask them, have you been working? The answer is almost always yes. But the proff is in the pudding, often when you see them play….you know different. In the case of Kemari Reynolds, she is fearless and I know she is working on her game. You watch the pace she plays at and her concentration level and you know she is different….SPECIAL. But it]s what Eligh Allen said to me that made my ears perk up ” she is all about details” I could be wrong but that could be the military background. I’m not sure many kids can get locked in the way SHE can….that’s reserved  for those rare ones!


So tomorrow we will kick off another session of Core Skills. Some young man or girl is going to walk though the doors and make a name for themselves. They will become a household name down the road. We are also going to  also see kids start taking major steps forward. There are going to be some kids ducking the work and without focus….I can assure one of those kids will not be Kemari Reynolds….and coaches l can assure you, she not just a D1 LOCK but will be that apple of almost every coach that lays eyes on her… because her game is REAL NEXT LEVEL STUFF!




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