Thursday, June 30, 2011

Moreau Catholic's Andy Mitchell stays local

Moreau Catholic's Andy Mitchell has decided to play for Coach John Peterson and Ohlone Junior College next year.

At 6-foot-3, Mitchell doubled his scoring and rebounding averages to 18.8 points and 7.8 boards during Coach Frank Knight's first year with the Mariners.  Likewise, Moreau Catholic went 16-11 after 7-19 and 3-24 records the previous two seasons.

Moreau Catholic's Kacey Holt heads east

Moreau Catholic High's Kacey Holt is heading to D.C. -- not to Congress or the presidency but to Howard University to play for Coach Kevin Nickelberry.The Bison are members of the Mid Eastern Athletic Conference.

The 6-foot-3 Holt was selected to the Second Team of the Hayward Area Athletic League after averaging 17.3 points and 6.2 rebounds a game for Coach Frank Knight.

 Skyline High's Bryce Fluellen is also on the Howard roster.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

High school basketball versus club team hoops -- it doesn't have to be this way

The following isn't northern California related -- at least not geographically -- but it's a telling read about, in this case, the negative nexus of high school basketball and club team basketball.

Cut to Rodney King and his plaintive question: "Why can't we all get along?"

Gary Stewart heads back east

Gary Stewart, the former head coach at UC Davis, has landed the top position at Stevenson University in Maryland. He's replacing the AD who was doubling up at the D-III school.

Dom Artis with another national mention

Jerry Meyer of Rivals notes 10 talents as his biggest surprise players of the travel basketball season to date and the Bay Area gets repped (a Rivals sub is required):
8. Dominic Artis
School: Richmond (Calif.) Salesian
The Buzz: Artis is another point guard prospect who is poised to move up the rankings. Quick and confident with the ball, Artis is a playmaker who is a catalyst for a talented Oakland Soldiers team.

Another honor for Robbie Herndon

Thomas Gase offers a great read on Robbie Herndon, the Times-Herald Male Athlete of the Year. Herndon is headed to San Francisco State to play basketball.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Colin Gruber earns Male Athlete of the year

The Santa Cruz Sentinel has named harbor High's Colin Gruber its Male Athlete of the Year:

Colin Gruber, Harbor

Basketball, baseball.

Gruber, a 6-foot-3, 173-pound senior, excelled at two sports.

A point guard for the Pirates' basketball team, Gruber led the county in scoring, averaging 26.6 points per game. He was named Santa Cruz Coast Athletic League MVP by league coaches and the Sentinel's basketball player of the year.

He recorded 317 rebounds, 102 blocks and 80 steals for the Pirates [20-8], who finished tied for second with Aptos in the SCCAL behind champion Santa Cruz. The Pirates advanced to the Central Coast Section Division IV quarterfinals, where they suffered a 53-52 season-ending loss to Carmel at Menlo School.

Gruber, who will play next season for NCAA Division I Northern Arizona, produced a double-double in 25 of 28 games.

He scored 30 or more points in eight games, including a pair or 42-point efforts against Aptos on Jan. 21 and St. Francis Feb. 8.

On the baseball field --" he last played three years ago as a freshman --" Gruber earned first-team all-SCCAL honors and was named to the Sentinel's All-County team as a outfielder.

He batted .364 [24-for-66] with four doubles and a home run. He had 17 RBIs and 17 runs scored. He also pitched and didn't allow a run in six appearances. He struck out 10 batters and walked six in 8 1/3 innings, allowing just three hits.

A Josh Akognon update

Thanks to Jeremy Russotti for filling us in on the latest regarding former Casa Grande High and Cal State Fullerton star Josh Akognon.

"Josh Akognon is with the LA Lakers tomorrow with their new draft picks to see who gets invites to veteran camp.

So far, he went to the New Orleans Hornets camp and got an invite to that veteran camp (he did really good).

We hope he blows away the Lakers staff in the next few days as well.

He has been working his tail off this summer in our Green Room Training program (as you will see on video)."

Get ready for the NBA or Europe -- Green Room Training by Russotti

Check out the most updated footage from Jeremy Russotti's Green Room Training Program -- the Phase 1 segment.

He is starting Phase 2 on July 11 (for five weeks).

This program is for college and professional players. Players/agents must call for pricing.

Updates on Jeremy Russotti's basketball training

We do have some opportunity for high schoolers to join during two-week periods. One is the rest of this week (Tuesday - Friday) in Santa Rosa. The other open week will be in August. Any serious high school players interested must email to secure a spot (

Kiwi scores over half a hundred

Providence-bound Kiwi Gardner dropped 51 points in a recent San Francisco Pro-Am game and, of course, the ubiquitous TravisF/Yay Area's Finest caught the display.

A Dominic Artis up-date

Josh Gershon tweeted this late yesterday:
"2012 PG Dominic Artis will unofficially visit UCLA on Tuesday. He also picked up an offer from Oregon today"

Monday, June 27, 2011

While in a hole, the first rule is quit digging

Yes, Jereme Richmond has tantalizing professional potential but his name here could be replaced with that of 789,562 others.

The Richmond brand is tarnished and Uncle Crawford isn't exactly burnishing it with his bombastic outbursts. May his 15 minutes of infamy soon be up.

Anyone who can tie his or her own shoes in the morning gets it --  that being the NBA general managers are the judges and make up the jury.

Good to see Dad stepping in here to provide some sanity.

Okay, back to our regularly scheduled northern CA basketball programming.

The Georgia Blazers are cheapskates

With tongue firmly in cheek...maybe.

Flights and a cell phone bill?

That's it? (probably not) 

Did Phil Knight lose his wallet? (why does that makes us think of this?)

But we digress.

Of course, where there is smoke, fire must be somewhere but these appear to be fairly run-of-the-mill transgressions.

Another day in the life of big time club team hoops and BCS level college programs.

Jim Basnight comments on Josiah Turner and Jared Cunningham

Jim Basnight recently offered commentary on a couple of northern CA born and bred Pac-12 talents:

* about Josiah Turner and next year's NBA draft - "...Turner will likely be in the draft, whether or not he plays, based on the decent chance that his prep school may be found incompetent by the NCAA..."

Basnight later added "Arizona signee Josiah Turner has withdrawn from the USA U19 training camp set to begin Friday apparently due to scheduling conflicts."

On Wednesday coach Sean Miller said to the Tucson Citizen that he felt Turner made a good decision to spend some time at home before heading to summer school in Tucson on July 11th. That's good and well that Turner wants to go home to see family and friends for a few weeks and start his college education and D1 hoops career as soon as possible, but to my knowledge there has been no statement from the NCAA since reports surfaced, per the NY Daily News that QEA was being investigated for possible fraud by the NCAA. I believe that shady dealings at Arizona are not a surprise and that in Turner's story, the least of it is his academics."


* about Jared Cunningham - "Cunningham leads a Beaver line-up that is approaching the type of talent that it takes to be dangerous in the conference, not just on a given night in Corvallis, but across the board, depending on their collective ability to stay focused. Focus is a huge need to run coach Craig Robinson's offense, but defensively Cunningham leads a scary group of athletes. 2011 frosh post Daniel Gomis and sophomore post Devon Collier form a very scary defensive trio with Cunningham. If the Beavs can put together offensive consistency, their take no prisoners 1-3-1 extended zone could make waves, not only in the Pac-12 but attract attention nationally."

Gordon makes his national move

Hey, maybe the rest of the country is catching up on Aaron Gordon -- how's that for a better headline than what us being used here. Justin Young/National Hoops Report asks a telling question halfway through his article.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Aaron Gordon reigns

It was close to being the Aaron Gordon Show (although Jabari Parker would beg to differ) for the U16s at the FIBA tourney -- check out AG's all-around production here.

Ronnie Flores with quite the informative piece

Ronnie Flores @ ESPNRise has a must-read column posted chock full of details about multiple northern CA talents -- it's a guarantee there will be some names you don't know..

Saturday, June 25, 2011

We missed this Kyle Odister update back in March

Backcourter Kyle (Rio Americano High) Odister ended up redshirting this past season at Cal Poly due to a foot injury as explained here.

By the Way, Drake U'u redshirted too at Cal Poly after transferring from Hartford.

Two Butte College players moving on

 We're not sure who it was but thanks for sending this item along:
Butte standouts moving on
Joseph Shufelbegrer
Chico Enterprise-Record

The Butte College men's basketball team had a banner season, winning the Golden Valley Conference, and two major reasons behind the Roadrunners' success are moving on to universities.

Rex Holmes, a Chico High graduate, is headed to the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, Wash., to continue playing basketball.

Shawn Moore, a Pleasant Valley High grad, chose a different path. The reigning GVC's Most Valuable Player passed up offers from smaller schools for a chance to walk-on at UC Santa Barbara.

Go here for the remainder.

It's back -- the Foothill JC Summer Jam on July 8-9

Start making plans because the Foothill JC Summer Jam hosted by Coach Shanan Rosenberg is not all that far away -- July 8-9 in Los Altos Hills.
It's an NCAA certified event, meaning colleges coaches will certainly be there, and a series of matchups between many of the best junior college teams in northern California.

An added bonus we always appreciate is sitting on the side of the gym facing the Santa Cruz Mountains. Do take a look across the horizon between games -- it's quite the sight -- enough to make you double and triple check about the possibility of having long lost relatives residing there and wishing to host a family reunion.

Now for the Merritt College 2011-12 basketball team

After covering the next destinations of the Merritt College sophomores, we turned to Coach Keenan McMiller for the players he has returning plus his Thunderbird newcomers.

Summer school has started and these are McMiller's enrollees along with his commentary.


* Joshua Amey, 5-foot-11, Berkeley High

"He will be our starting point -- Josh has the work ethic and the basketball IQ and just needs to bulk up -- he will be a D-1 player"

* Eric Nelson, 6-foot-7 & 180, El Cerrito High (8.3 rebounds and 4.2 blocked shots a game)

"Eric has a great attitude, endless potential and is hard-nosed -- he can run, block shots and finish at the rim -- we'll get him in the weight room and also make him a faceup forward -- another eventual D-1 player"

* Andrew Nash, 6-foot-2, Oakland High

"We will redshirt him as he needs a year to get healthy -- I've known him since the sixth grade, he is a super athlete and a team guy who received some ESPN notice as a point"

* Glendale Poole, 6-foot-8 & 260, Fremont (Oakland) High

"He played at Alameda College as a freshman but got the year back -- he's a force in the middle who has good footwork and we expect to get 10-15 minutes a game out of him"

* Deandre Coppage, 6-4, Natomas High

"He's a freshman who hasn't played in a couple of years, he last played high school back in 2008"

* Marcos Castrillo, 6-6, Pinole Valley High

"Marcos is a combo forward who is learning to be more physical and has come a long way"


* Kareem Ransom, 6-foot-3, Inderkum High

"An excellent scorer"

* Nick Capiti, 6-foot-1, Bishop O'Dowd High

"He has thoroughly improved his ballhandling and his shooting, he has spent a lot of time on his shot"

* Elliott Herald, 6-foot-3, Center High (Sacramento)

* Tyler Idowu, 6-foot-4, Rodriguez High (Fairfield)

* Jisuan Randle, 6-foot-2, Newark Memorial High

Plus three other student-athletes from outside the area are coming in:

* Douglas Anderson, 6-foot-7 & 215, Stephenson High, Atlanta

"We redshirted him last year -- he's a solid rebounder and defender"

* Nick Dixon, 6-foot-8, Reed High, Reno

"I've known Nick since the sixth or seventh grade"

* Jordan Fusslier, 6-foot-0, Baton Rouge, LA

"He played in Baton Rouge and is the nephew of former St. Mary's Assistant Coach David Patrick who is now the overseas talent scout for the Houston Rockets -- Jordan played his first year here and was our third leading scorer"

McMiller may also have two other additions but it's not yet definite. The pair are:

* Christopher Jackson, 6-foot-4, a member of the McClymonds High 2008 state championship team

* Bobby Syvanthong, 5-foot-9, El Cerrito High School, the Alameda Contra Costa Athletic League 2011 MVP

Dominican U basketball gets an assistant

Coach Booker Harris has hired a full-time assistant at Dominican University.

Mitch Stephens on Brandon Ashley

Mitch Stephens checks in Brandon Ashley's move to Findlay Prep.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Carl Foster reports on the Fullcourt Press Bay Area Showcase

Here is Carl Foster, longtime Bay Area basketball fixture, reporting on a recent prep event he attended:

Fullcourt Press Bay Area Showcase Recap: Part II
Top Sophomore and  Freshman Game

Carl Foster
June 19,  2011

The FCP Bay Area Showcase was held on Monday, June 13 at Dream Courts in Hayward. Besides the Fullcourt Press' own Dinos Trigonis and Carl Foster, other scouts present included NorCal guru Lee Hubbard  and representatives from NorCal Preps, Cal-Hi Sports and Yay Area's Finest.

This is the second and third of three game-by-game reports by Carl Foster.

David Andoh was the standout player in the  Top Junior (2012) game. Here we feature the players in the Top Soph (2013) and  Frosh (2014) games.

Top Sophomore (2013) Game

Top Prospects:

1) Rae Jackson, 6-foot-2, 2013 Rodriguez (Fairfield CA)

A supremely talented guard. Plays very fast and loose. He can dominate a game like this because of his superior athletic  ability. He is a blur on the fast break. He explodes to the rim with tremendous authority! Can shoot the jumper, get to the rim, find players on the move, and make steals at will. He is capable of being a high major player if he can learn to harness all of his gifts.

2) TJ Wallace, 6-foot-2, 2013 McNair (Stockton CA) 

A tailback on the basketball court. He is so strong it's almost illegal. His body is already built for the collegiate game. He rebounds extremely well from the guard position. Plus, he can finish around long, tall defenders. His deep ball is solid, but he needs to become a more willing passer when he attacks the  rim. He is easily a mid major prospect right now!

Solid Prospects:

1) Jason Webster, 6-foot-0, 2013 St. Patrick/St. Vincent (Vallejo CA)

Combo guard with a monster body built for contact. Shot the deep ball a little too much in the game, but he looks like an excellent mid  range shooter. He is adept at attacking the basket in transition. He will need  to grow or learn how to manage the game better when serving as the PG on the  floor. Has tremendous jumping ability; as he put on a dunking exhibition during  warm ups!

2) Terrance Roberts, 6-foot-2, 2013 St. Ignatius (San Francisco CA)

Versatile Wing player who showed a variety of skill sets  during the course of the game. He shot the deep ball, used curl moves to get up  mid range shots, and finished strong on the break. Very rangy defender with the  ability to guard three (3) positions. Needs more ball handling abilities to  really blossom as a player. If he grows he?ll really move up as a prospect in  this class!

3) Jeremy Dennis, 6-foot-3, 2013 St. Mary's (Berkeley CA)

A guard who has a chance to be pretty special over time. He can dribble like a PG, pass like a 2 guard, and slashes like a wing. He is super long, lanky, and rangy. Once he gets stronger and tougher, he will become an outstanding prospect. Mid-range ability is a big area of development for him. Also, he'll need to learn how to defend perimeter guards to be effective.

4) Brandon White, 6-foot-2, 2013 Liberty (Discovery Bay CA)

A tweener. Plays like a forward, but has the size of a guard. He might have been the most active of all of the players who played over the course of the evening. He hustles at all times, but needs perimeter skills to become a  very good player. Rebounds well, garners all loose balls, and competes on defense, but needs the ability to shoot the ball and handle it under pressure.

5) Leon Williams, 6-foot-0, 2013 Rodriguez  (Fairfield CA)

A classic point guard. Stronger, clever, and aggressive all  night. He is a traditional player who seeks to get his teammates the ball first, before seeking to score. He filled up the stat sheet during the game. He is a GAMER who loves to compete. He will always be a winner because of his cerebral  approach to the game.

6) Kyle King, 6-foot-4, 2013 Cardinal Newman (Santa  Rosa CA)

Small Forward who was super active around the glass. Lived around the  rim. He was a hustle guy who needs to continue working on ball handling and  shooting skills to become a wing player. He flourished when he operated from 15 feet and in. Tough defender who must be the favorite of his high school coach. Nice frame which should lend itself to continued growth and  development.

Other Players To Watch Out For:

Lejon Sewell, 5-foot-11, 2013 Wood (Vacaville  CA)
Randy Cruzet, 5-foot-7, 2014 Valley Christian (San Jose CA)
Johnny Shelton, 5-foot-6, 2013 Rodriguez (Fairfield  CA)
Justyce Key, 5-foot-10, 2013 Berkeley (Berkeley  CA)
Devonte Baisa, 5-foot-10, 2013 Kimball (Tracy  CA)
Ethan Cuthbertson, 5-foot-5, 2013 Modesto Christian (Modesto CA)
Mikey Eggleston, 5-foot-11, 2013 College Park  (Pleasanton Hill CA)
Koree Cox, 6-foot-2, 2013 Rodriguez (Fairfield  CA)
Justin Shayesteh, 6-foot-1, 2013 Homestead (San Jose  CA)

Top Freshman (2014) All Star Game

Top Prospects:

1) Trevor Dunbar, 5-foot-8, 2014 St. Ignatius (San  Francisco CA)

Silver quick PG with lightning speed, vision and the ability to score off pick and roll. Has huge hands, strong frame, and has that star quality. A mid major prospect right now!

2) Cody Sheldon, 6-foot-9, 2014 Irvington (Fremont  CA)

A big, strong post player who has soft hands and a solid feel for the  game. He will develop into an outstanding rebounder and low post scorer. Showed the ability to play aggressively from the high post as well. He is easily a low major prospect already.

3) Jaskam Bajwa, 6-foot-0, 2014 Irvington (Fremont  CA)

An extremely athletic wing who explodes to the rim with the ball. Had an impressive, savage dunk over a defender during the game. He is smooth when  setting up his jump shot.

4) Demoriaye Hart-Spikes, 5-foot-11, 2014 Fairfield (Fairfield CA)

A crafty attacking guard. More of a combo player who wants to score the ball. Has the ability to get into the lanes in the half court; Plus, he's great in transition getting to the basket.

5) Jiday Ugbaja, 5-foot-10, 2014 Riordan (San Francisco CA)

Powerful off guard with excellent ball handling ability in traffic. A master at attacking perimeter defenders. He is quite adept at creating great scoring opportunities for teammates off penetration.

6) Lamont Banks, 6-foot-4, 2015 St. Joseph's (Alameda CA)

A forward who is capable of scoring in the post or from mid  range. He showed nice feet around the rim, plus a soft touch out to 16 feet. Rebounds well on the offensive end of the floor. He'll need to become more agile and quicker, because he looks pretty mature for his class. He is an 8th grader currently.

Solid Prospects:

1) Michael Pickney, 5-foot-4, 2014 St. Mary's (Berkeley CA)

Smaller PG with an incredible basketball IQ. He possesses good  ball handling skills, crafty moves, solid court vision, and can pass it well on the move. He needs to get bigger and stronger to continue his development. Also, he needs to add a solid perimeter jump shot to augment his playmaking  skill set.

2) Shane Suttles, 6-foot-3, 2014 Evergreen (San Jose CA)

Nice wing player who was super active around the glass. He was a hustle guy who punishes players for taking plays off. He is always around the ball. Showed the ability to run the floor and finish around traffic.

3) Troy Brown, 6-foot-2, 2014 College Park (Pleasanton Hill CA)

Another kid who is All Hustle/All The Time. He is a forward currently who will probably need to develop some guard skills in the  future. Smooth at times, but needs more ball handling abilities to really blossom as a player. Loves to compete. Also, he showed the ability to knock down a perimeter jumper.

4) Frankie Ferrari, 5-foot-7, 2014 Burlingame (Burlingame CA)

A PG who is smart, clever and reminds me of a Bobby Hurley (Duke PG) type guard. He pushes the ball extremely well in transition. He doesn't back down to anyone on the court. He battles for loose balls, as well as, he manages the half court offense. Needs better shot selection from the PG spot.

5) Tyree Thomas, 5-foot-8, 2014 American Canyon (Vallejo CA)

Combo guard who excels in one-on-one situations. He has the ability to score on the dribble, off the catch, or on the move. He was fantastic in a number of phases of the game. He will need to grow to become an top shelf player, but his instincts were very good. Loved the way he attacks the rim to  score or garner easy rebound baskets.

6) Isaac Pittman, 6-foot-0, 2014 Hayward (Hayward CA)

A classic tweener. He doesn't have a position just yet, but makes up for it by just out-playing other players. He is a rebounder deluxe from the wing  position. Will need a host of his offensive skills developed, but he will always be productive because of his motor!

Other Players To Watch Out For:

Frederick Steen, 5-foot-9, 2016 Bishop O'Dowd (Oakland CA)
Omari Porsche, 5-foot-10, 2014 American Canyon (Vallejo CA)
Jourdan Johnson, 5-foot-4, 2014 Modesto Christian (Modesto CA)
Chris Johnson, 5-foot-9, 2014 St. Mary's (Berkeley CA)
Joey Frenchwood, 6-foot-0, 2014 Newark Memorial (Newark CA)
Sebastian Flores, 6-foot-0, 2014 College Park (Pleasanton Hill CA)
Armani Reed, 5-foot-11, 2014 Rodriguez (Fairfield CA)
Spencer Clark, 6-foot-2, 2014 Mt. Diablo (Concord CA)

More on Khiari Swift's enrollment at Antelope Valley College

Mel Grussing features Khiari Swift's settling in at Antelope Valley College. Do bookmark Mel's site -- it's the best junior college fan site imaginable -- as he'll make it easy to follow Khiari's progress at AVC.

More on Brandon Ashley's move

Here's Jimmy Durkin all over the Brandon Ashley departure from the Bay Area.

Two leave Dominican basketball

Neither are from the Bay Area but two players are departing from Dominican University basketball team, one of them heading to Humboldt State. Theo Fightmaster has the details.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Brandon Ashley is leaving

Bishop O'Dowd frontcourter Brandon Ashley is heading to Findlay Prep -- this per Alex Kline/The Recruit Scoop.

We wrote about this possibility on June 10, weighing the pros and cons.

We wish Brandon well in his new surroundings.

Rod Bobbitt heads out of state

Connected with Barret Peery, coach of the Indian Hills (Ottumwa, Iowa) basketball program and he offered this about Castro Valley High's Rod Bobbit:
"Yes, Rod signed with us last month and will be at Indian Hills"

Here's some background on Coach Peery via an Indian Hills press release issued when he was hired:
"Saying it’s a job he considers one of the top five or six in the country in the junior college ranks, Barret Peery has been tabbed to fill the basketball coaching vacancy at Indian Hills Community College. Peery’s hiring was announced Thursday.

The new coach says he was drawn to Indian Hills by the history of the college’s basketball program, the passion of the fan base and the understanding by everyone of what it takes to be successful on a regional and national level.

Peery comes to Indian Hills after three years as an assistant coach at the University of Utah. Prior to that, he coached for five years, three as head coach, at the College of Southern Idaho, a two-year school and perennial national power in Twin Falls, Idaho.

At Southern Idaho, Peery took his team to the NJCAA Division I national tournament twice, finishing fourth at the tourney in 2007. He compiled a record of 85-19, a winning percentage of .817, at CSI.

“Indian Hills is one of a handful of schools in the country,” Peery said, “where you have a realistic expectation of going to the national tournament every year. This was an opportunity to coach at a special place, one where the administration has the same goals as I do.”

Two of Peery’s three teams at Southern Idaho led the nation in scoring and he promises that Indian Hills fans will see a fast-paced brand of basketball.

“We will play fast and use the whole floor,” the new Warriors coach said. “We should be an entertaining team to watch. But just because we will be a high-scoring team doesn’t mean we won’t guard people. I believe you can be a good defensive team while still scoring a lot of points.”

During his three years as head coach at CSI, the Golden Eagles won three Scenic West Athletic Conference titles and Peery was named Coach of the Year twice.

His best CSI team may have been his final one, a team that finished 30-2 but lost the Region 18 championship game to Salt Lake CC. Nine players from that team signed with NCAA Division I schools.

In all, Peery had 23 players go on to play D-I basketball in three years.
Peery describes his recruiting plans as “coast-to-coast.” He said his rosters at Southern Idaho were filled with players from all across the country.

His first two years at CSI were spent as an assistant under Gib Arnold before he ascended to the head coaching job. Peery has a total of 16 years coaching experience. He has been an assistant coach at Snow College in Utah, Utah Valley State College, Southern Utah University and Portland State University.

Somoygi versus Johnson

It could come down to UCSB teammates facing off if the U.S. meets Hungary in the World University games. Greg (Woodside Priory) Somogyi is on the Hungary squad while Orlando (Palma High) Johnson is attempting to make the United States team.

UC Santa Barbara athletics provides the details.

UC Davis' Mark Payne making the rounds

Jason Anderson of the Stockton Record has a good article posted today on the travels of UC Davis' Mark Payne (St. Mary's High/Stockton) in his effort to land a spot in the NBA.

Seven Monterey Peninsula College basketballers moving on

Monterey Peninsula College Coach Blake Spiering, after a 15-12 overall and 7-5 Coast Conference finish, has been busy securing next destinations for his sophomores.

Seven already have new homes with an eighth in the making:

* Julian Demalleville, 6-foot-2 & 195, (San Luis Obispo High) is moving north to Big Sky Conference member Sacramento State.

* Patrick Kilty, 6-foot-6 & 220, (North Monterey County High) is headed to Mt. Mercy University of the Midwest Collegiate Conference in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

* Dominic Zanella, 6-foot-5 & 215, (San Benito High) is making it a Lobo duo for Mt. Mercy University, an NAIA member.

* Ryan Stanley, 6-foot-7 & 235, (Gig Harbor High in WA) is on his way to wine country at Sonoma State University, of the California Collegiate Athletic Association.

* Alex Brandon, 6-foot-2 & 165, (Hayward High) is part of a trio of players joining the basketball program at Pacifica College in Riverside.

* Quinczy Spencer, 6-foot-3 & 185, (North Salinas High) is also Pacifica College bound, playing for Coach Bruce Victor.

* Cameron Johnson, 6-foot-2 & 185, (Eaglecrest High in CO) rounds out the Pacifica College threesome.

* Mitch Philp, 6-foot-2 & 185, (Australia) is a point guard who is still looking to nail down his new home.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Jordan Giusti finds his next home

San Ramon Valley High and Lakeshow backcourter Jordan Giusti will be walking on at St. Mary's College.

He'll be joining juniors Matthew Dellavedova and Paul McCoy as well as sophomore Stephen Holt in the Gael backcourt.

Giusti averaged 14.9 points, 5.6 rebounds, 5.6 assists and 2.4 steals a game during his senior season while earning these multiple honors:

* MVP of the East Bay Athletic League

* MVP of the Riordan Crusader Classic

* MVP of the St. Francis Holiday Classic

* Second Team All-East Bay Boys Basketball team ( Bay Area News Group)

There is no tougher, hard-nosed player out there plus he gets it, doing what it takes to best put his team in a position to win.

Giusti is playing this summer for the South Bay Spartan squad in the San Francisco Pro-Am League.

This may have local/regional ramifications

Per Richard Obert, Westwind Prep Coach Gary Trousdale has departed from the program and is now heading a prep school in the San Diego area. His top player is following him after being asked to depart, as Obert writes here.

Two former Westwind coaches, Bobby Bossman and T.J. Perry, are already listed on the La Jolla site.

Implications for northern CA basketball? Who really knows at this point but having both a high school and a post prep entity could attract some players from our area.

Here's a February 2011 feature on Trousdale's plans for Westwind.

Livermore High's Nick Simi signs

Nick Simi stays local:
Livermore High School Stand-Out Signs with the Hawks
June 18, 2011

Livermore, CA - Holy Names University announces a new member to its men's basketball team. Nick Simi a senior from Livermore High School announced his intent to attend Holy Names University this Fall.
Although last season was disappointing for the Livermore High School Cowboys, Simi playing the forward position averaged a total of 24.8 points per game.

Cowboys coach, Patrick McKnight is happy with Simi's choice to attend Holy Names University and continue both his academic and athletic career as a Hawk.

"Nick is a great young man! He has a strong work-ethic and has a gift to score the basketball. He has shown great perseverance in coming back from a knee injury. Nick will continue to grow as a basketball player, but more importantly as a person who is very passionate about the game," says Coach Sanchez

Nick has volunteered his time as a TA in elementary schools. He takes great joy in teaching young kids the game of basketball.

"I am thrilled to sign with HNU because of the athletic and academic opportunities it offers me. I look forward to getting to know the coaching staff and my teammates, as well as keeping the winning tradition at HNU alive."

Simi plans to major in business this coming Fall.

Oakland Tech's Stephen Sanders signs

6-foot-5 Stephen Sanders, out of Oakland Tech, has signed:

Holy Names Men's Basketball Signs Stephen Sanders
June 17, 2011

Holy Names University men's basketball coach Omar Sanchez announced his second signing of the 2011-2012 recruiting season in Stephen Sanders.

Sanders is a graduate of Oakland Technical High School. In his senior season Sanders helped the Bulldogs to a 18-9 overall record and a 6-4 record in Oakland League play. He averaged 7.6 points and 10 rebounds a game.

Sanders said, "I am excited to attend Holy Names. I am ready for the academic challenge and am looking forward to the basketball season. Coach Sanchez is a good guy and I look forward to playing for him and for my new team!" Coach Sanchez said, "Adding Stephen gives us depth inside and also some versatility with his ability to shoot the mid- range shot. There is much up-side to Stephen and with some added strength and confidence he will be hard to deal with on the floor."

McKenzie Moore getting some national press

Justin Young at his National Hoops Report site offered this, plus a photo, on Mckenzie Moore's play at the Rose City Showcase:
McKenzie Moore, SF, Team 94 – No one knew much about the 6-foot-6 graduated senior coming into the event. By Sunday night, everyone knew who he was. He was the anchor for a scrappy Team 94 bunch with his control of the game. Moore was the primary ball-handler, the best passer, a good scorer in the clutch and a tough defender in the backcourt. A one-time Saint Mary’s commitment, Moore is hoping to get a qualifying score on the SAT to enroll in the fall at a college. If he doesn’t get the score he needs, it is prep school. If he goes the prep school route, don’t be surprised to see his name all over the place in the fall.

Mark Payne and Kevin Galloway working out for NBA teams

Jason Jones writes about both UC Davis' Mark Payne and former Sac High star Kevin Galloway working out for various NBA teams. The latter certainly a long and winding road collegiate experience.

Cal-Hi Sports honors two sporters

Cal-Hi Sports honors a number of basketball-football playing prep athletes including a number from northern California: Arik Armstead, Freddie Tagaloa, Devante Adams, Amir Carlisle, Noah Allen, T.J. Braff, Scott Harrison, Jeremy Jetton, Josh Mooney, Raymond Nelson, Mike Padovese, James Sample and Tanner Trosin.

Jono Metzger-Jones on his BOD days and more

Here's an interesting interview with Jono Metzger-Jones in which former BOD Coach Mikes Phelps receives more than a mention.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Howie Manzo to be a Keelhauler

Chabot College backcourter Howie Manzo has cast his lot with Coach Brian Rooney and Cal Maritime basketball in Vallejo.

A highlight of his season was earning a spot on the All Tournament Team in this past season's Las Positas Tip-Off Classic.

A graduate of James Logan High, the 6-foot-1 Manzo earned a 3.9 grade point average while at Chabot.

The Keelhaulers are members of the California Pacific Conference, along with Simpson University (Redding), Holy Names (Oakland), Menlo College (Atherton), Pacific Union (Angwin), University of California Merced and William Jessup in Rocklin.

Here's a two and a half minute Manzo highlight film from his sophomore season at Chabot.

Colin Chadwick is heading south

Former Justin Sienna frontcourter Colin Chadwick, a recent graduate of Chabot College, has committed to Chapman University in Orange County. The 6-foot-8 Chadwick will be joining a squad that reached the second round of the D-3 2011 championship tournament. He will also be the tallest player on the Panther squad.

Greg Foster jumps into the college coaching ranks

From the El Paso Times UTEP hoops beat reporter comes word of former Skyline High star Greg Foster both earning his B.A. degree and being formally hired as a Miner assistant coach:
UTEP basketball coaching staff move
Joe Muench
El Paso Times
June 3, 2011

This is a no-brainer UTEP basketball move that took a bit of reshuffling, that's all. Some raise eyebrows when this sort of thing happens, but it does happen.

Greg Foster, college degree newly in hand, can now be hired as a full-time college basketball coach.Great for UTEP and El Paso...

...Foster played at UTEP with [Tim] Hardaway and Antonio Davis  (our note: out of McClymonds High) in the late 1980s. He had a long NBA career. And he has good ties to the community (by marriage) He is an excellent fit in Utepia. He'll be a great ambassador for UTEP basketball, and certainly has good ties in the overall basketball world.
Here is a companion piece.

Who is going where -- an update on Merritt College basketball

Merritt College is coming off a 19-11 overall record and a ledger of 8-5 in Bay Valley Conference play. Coach Keenan McMiller, a Merritt alumnus and also a former Thunderbird player, has the program headed in a positive direction and his sophomores are locating new destinations.
McMiller has quintet of student-athletes moving on:

* Joshua Hatcher, guard, 6-foot-5, 205 (Berkeley High)

A First Team All Bay Valley Conference honoree this past season, Hatcher is checking out Washburn University in Kansas City. Coach Bob Chipman has offered Hatcher, who is coming off his best academic semester in college. McMiller calls this "a huge accomplishment." Hatcher has two more classes to take in order to earn his degree.

* Saajid Polite, guard, 6-foot3, 190 (Grant High, Sacramento)

Polite looks like he is headed to the University of Indianapolis, a D-2 school. What's interesting is that Coach Stan Gouard's Greyhounds beat then #23 Tennessee 79-64 last November 8 and that Gouard also has overseas ties that benefit players wishing to eventually play professionally across the pond.

* Roman Robinson, guard, 6-foot-3, 175 (Rodriguez High, Fairfield)

He has very strong interest from NAIA member Oklahoma City and Coach Dionne Phelps, plus nearby Dominican University and newly-hired mentor Booker Harris. Rocky Mountain College in Billings, Montana is also in the mix, the 2009 NAIA basketball champion.

* Richard Walker, forward, 6-foot-7, 190 (Atlanta, GA) to Texas A&M Prairie View

Walker finished as the third-leading rebounder on the team and 10th in the Bay Valley Conference with 7.1 boards per game. He shot 46% from the field and tallied 26 blocked shots.

* William Tolfree, forward, 6-foot-7, 195 (Atlanta, GA)

He has visited University of West Alabama but may land at Texas A&M Prairie View if a scholarship comes open. Tolfree also has three or four D-2 colleges wanting him and will have earned his degree after three more classes.

Justin Young writes about Devareaux Manley

National basketball writer Justin Young posted this today at his National Hoops Report site:

Top five surprises from the Rose City Showcase

Devareaux Manley, SG, Team 94 – You could have put a Dallas Mavericks jersey on him and called it a day. That’s how good the 6-foot-1 graduated senior was shooting the ball. He was lights out all weekend and helped Team 94, a team that no one had winning any of their games going into the showcase, reach the finals of the event. Manley was automatic. He’s a specialist and was a great one over the weekend. He’s fully qualified and is still looking for a home. He said Chico State is his best option at the moment but he wants to play July out to see what transpires. If he shoots like he did in Portland, Chico State won’t be very happy.

Brian Katz adds to his Sac State staff

Coach Brian Katz has added to his Hornet staff, including Chris Walker who has a long history of ballin' and also some coaching in California.

More on Brandon Ashley

Here's an interesting piece from national recruiting analyst Jeff Borzello on Brandon Ashley.

The key line: "...I just have to play harder, play more consistently...”

Not criticizing BA in particular (this is an overall statement encompassing all athletes) but you either have a motor or you don't. Playing hard comes from within, not as the result of pressure from outside sources. What is on display is what you own.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Meet Dr. Joaquin Wallace

Who is Dr. Joaquin Wallace? No, you won't find him at a hospital or a medical complex but he'll gladly make house calls, especially if your basketball team is ailing.

Officially, Wallace is the head women's basketball coach at San Francisco State -- the first university head coach anywhere out of Oakland -- but any sort of LinkedIn type version of his tenure on this earth would be woefully incomplete. To attempt a capture of his life oeuvre on paper or pixel is a Sisyphean task yet an appropriate undertaking because this Oakland born and bred man has a compelling and fascinating life tale.

For the sake of clarity, the "Wallace Experience" will be divided into chapters of sorts, something that life in it's non-linear and messy narrative doesn't allow.

The Basketball World

Remember the adage about finding something you love to do and you'll never have to work a day in your life? Well, there was no love of coaching, an occupation not even under the considered category in Wallace's world.

But why he entered the profession is a simple one: "my daughter was playing CYO basketball." Thus slowly the siren call began despite "I never imagined coaching anything" as his jumping off point.

Entering the profession as a compensated member, he then landed these gigs:
  • Junior Varsity Girls Coach at St Mary’s High School in Berkeley and
  • Head Varsity Girls Coach at Albany High School and
  • Associate Head  Coach at Contra Costa Community College
His current tenure began when San Francisco State Director of Athletics Michael Simpson, who coached Wallace on the Gator baseball team in the 1980s, selected him to helm the women's squad. Simpson saw something back then, proceeded out on a proverbial limb in hiring someone with no previous college coaching experience and yes, his selection of Wallace has paid handsome dividends.

Now, 19 graduated student-athletes later, Wallace has just completed his sixth season at San Francisco State with a well-earned reputation as a leader who gets the most from his players. As the third-winningest coach in the program's history -- this despite having but 1.8 scholarships at his disposal -- he emphasizes defense for one specific reason. "Offense costs money, defense doesn't," Wallace explained. "The chance of me landing a skilled offensive player are not that good." Yet conversely, he has coached two 1,000 point scorers during his time with the Gators, coupled with the number #19, #25, #27, #30, #34 and #36 top 40 career point leaders in SF State's women’s program history.

Wallace added, "what I have learned in this business is that it's about money and scholarships. We do our best piecing it together with limited resources."

Yes, he does.

His Gators enjoyed two consecutive non-losing seasons with back to back 14 win seasons, while the 2009-10 squad reached the 15 win mark for the first time in 25 seasons. All the aforementioned were historical accomplishments since the Gators joined the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) conference. During those three seasons, the Gators were one of six teams earning three consecutive CCAA playoff appearance since the playoff format began in 2008. Last season, with the Gators fielding the youngest team in the CCAA, Wallace's team finished one game shy of a fourth consecutive conference playoff appearance.

Employing a method of operation built around stopping opponents has led to some intriguing scores versus D-1 opponents, teams that were expecting a veritable walk in the park. Such as a loss to Santa Clara by just three and a 42-39 defeat two seasons ago at UNLV. In the 2007-08, the Gators toppled Pacific up in Stockton by a score of 65-60.

Doing the D has thrust San Francisco State into national recognition:
  • 2010-11: within the CCAA, the Gators ranked second in field goal percentage defense (35.4%) and second in team defense at 56.4 points per game allowed while ranking #20 nationally in the latter and #23 in the former -- accomplished with the youngest team in the conference (seven frosh, two sophomores and a single senior)
  • 2009-10: within the CCAA, the Gators ranked first in field goal percentage defense (33.4%) and second in team defense at 56.5 points a game while ranking #24 nationally in the latter and #5 in the former
  • 2008-09: within the CCAA, ranked first in field goal percentage defense (35.8%) and also first in team defense at 53.3 points per game while finishing #9 nationally in the former and #19 in the latter.
Moreover, Wallace's other accomplishments include:
  • graduating 19 of his recruits
  • a team grade point average in 2010-11 of 2.95
  • in 2010-11, Wallace moved into third place in career wins for the women’s basketball program at San Francisco State University
  • he recruited and graduated the #6 and #7 top scorers in the history of the women’s basketball program -- Krystle Mays in 2009 and Dominique Hunter 2011
  • the 2009-10 effort produced the first 15-win season since 1983
  • from 2007-09, the Gators enjoyed consecutive 14-win seasons - the first time in 25 years such a feat was accomplished
  • in those six seasons, three student-athletes have earned First Team All Conference honors·with four being Second Team All Conference selections
Wallace spends hours watching tape and formulating game plans, something akin to compiling a business report prior to a key meeting.

Brian Fogel, the head coach of the Chico State women's basketball team, knows Wallace well since they match up twice a season. "I think he has done a really good job at San Francisco State," Fogel offered, adding "his teams are always well-prepared and work hard. His preparation gives his team an opportunity to win."

People have noticed.

Wallace was recently featured in a national coaching management magazine (more on that below) as well being on a coaching panel at the final four which featured, Quintin Hillsman and Coquese Washington both of whom are current head coaches from prominent D-1 programs Syracuse and Penn State respectively. “Being on the panel with both Quentin and Coquese was an out of body experience for me because I respect and admire both for their passion and commitment to the women’s game”

But it certainly wasn't always that way. Call it a learning process built on a platform of both understanding and recognizing that greater knowledge was needed.

"Three years ago, I wouldn't have been ready to move up in this business," Wallace explained. "Now I'm mentally prepared and most importantly ­ I am confident and comfortable!"

In fact, Felicia Hall Allen, a prominent sports attorney who represents both Division I and II head coaches and who also mentor’s Wallace, stated “he is the best kept secret no one knows about."

But Wallace is gratified about what is his most important task: "I'm most proud of being able to bring in kids, have them go from 17 to 22 and watch them graduate," he explained. "Witnessing the maturation process and the growth is like leaving footprints."

Last June, Wallace attended the Black Coaches and Administrators Achieving Coaching Excellence (ACE) program, something began in 2003 in order to develop ethnic minority basketball coaches in D-2 and D-3 on the elements necessary to know in order to land and operate a D-1 hoops program.

What he learned filled in the gaps and instilled an even greater sense of purpose. Wallace returned and created a program mission statement, the FACTS program: (Family, Accountability, Character, Team and Success) that is  the basis upon which is team operates.

He was also featured in the Postseason 2011 edition of Coaching Management magazine.

Education as a tool

Born and raised in Oakland, Wallace graduated from Oakland Tech High in 1982. His mantra despite his many accomplishments: "if anything, I am a by-product of Oakland." What's that old (revised) saying, 'you can't the Oakland out of...'

It's true he has earned a doctorate but academics were more of an afterthought because baseball was going to be his ticket to ride.

"My Mom and Dad stressed education -- I didn't value it,": Wallace explained. "There were no educational role models, I never knew a PhD. In my neighborhood, it was drugs, sports or entertainment."

Playing baseball at San Francisco State brought him into the educational fold but, as he envisioned, only as a way station until he was drafted and made his way into major league baseball. "I was a big A's fan  -- Reggie Jackson, Campy Campaneris -- and if I wasn't drafted by MLB, then I didn't know what would happen to me."

"But I got to San Francisco State and my coach [Dr. Simpson] said you have to have something to fall back on," Wallace recalls. Displaying the depth of his actual capabilities, he majored in economics. During this time, he also landed a position in 1987 with the San Francisco Giants organization, the first African-American to do so.

Professional baseball did not reach out to Wallace as a prospect but that lemon eventually morphed into the proverbial lemonade.

A BA in economics was earned in 1989, eventually followed by an Marketing MBA in 1995 from Golden Gate University and eventually a doctorate in business in 2007, again from Golden Gate University.

A musical interlude

While still in college working towards his initial degree, Wallace branched out, teaching himself to play the piano. "It's been about 20 years performing on piano and keyboards," Wallace said about yet another of his masteries. “I have played in a few bands and I have had the opportunity to open up for world reknown gospel recording artist Fred Hammond, as well as, the legendary R&B group the Gap Band” during the 90s."

Giving back

1998 was the birth of Project Transition, Wallace's brainchild for creating greater economic opportunity for Alameda County residents. Implemented in 1999, it was holistically framed, a program encompassing the development of not just employable skills but also presentation and communication aptitudes. In 2002, Project Transition earned the Oakland Chamber of Commerce Community Project of the Year.

A stranger in his own land?

Call him a Renaissance Man.

Yet despite his many accomplishments, Wallace can and does move about in the East Bay minus much recognition. In an area not bereft of but certainly in need of as many role models as possible and with Oakland itself badly in need of revitalization, there's a jewel or better yet, a resource, moving about largely untapped.

That is confounding.

Yet he is recognized nationally, being listed as a change agent in the Black Contemporary Encyclopedia alongside such well known names as a pre-presidency Barack Obama, James Earl Jones, Smokey Robinson; Al Roker, Forest Whitaker and James Worthy. The volume is designed to provide biographical profiles of the important and influential persons of African American and/or black heritage.

Our ears are picking up strains of Sinatra's "The Best Is Yet To Come."

Bill Paterson on the Iroegbu family of basketball

Bill Paterson covers the upcoming moves of the two eldest Iroegbu sons as one heads north and the other east.

Fletcher Johnson takes over

Bill Paterson offers a small feature on Fletcher Johnson assuming the head coaching spot with the boys basketball program at Rancho Cordova High.

An upcoming all-star contest

Go here to learn who is on which roster as the Sonoma County League matches up with the North Bay League on June 25.

Summer hoops in Marin

Dave Curtis writes about summer basketball for Marin prepsters as the MCAL coaches explain the goals and benefits.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Team 94 in the Rose City Classic

Justin Young is reporting from Portland on the Rose City Showcase:

Team Takeover is the top team in the Nike EYBL standings at 15-0. But with the majority of the team at the NBA Top 100 camp, this Takeover team didn’t look like the same group that has dominated the EYBL. In fact, Takeover lost to Team 94 in the opener 64-50...
...McKenzie Moore was one of the nice revelations of opening night. He committed to St. Mary’s but never achieved his qualifying score. He’s currently waiting the return of his latest test results. If he gets the qualifying score, Moore will be college bound, according to his coach Phil Handy. If not, hello prep school. If that’s the case, Moore will be an interesting prospect. He’s 6-foot-6, athletic, can handle the ball and raw enough to make you do a double take. Moore’s case is an interesting one and worth watching...
...Team 94 forward David Andoh, a 6-foot-7 rising senior, has offers from Colorado, Utah and Cal Poly, according to Handy...
...Devareaux Manley, an unsigned senior for Team 94, scored 17 points and hit three three-pointers. He’s a fully qualified 6-foot-2 and looking for a home.

The Nor Cal Preps Top 40 Sacto area players

Bill Paterson of the Sacramento Bee has a pair of posts up on area basketball players making the Nor Cal Preps Top 40 lists:

* 2012

* 2013

Anyone know if this kid will be playing in or around Sacto next HS season?

Alex Kline/The Recruit Scoop recently tweeted this:
"2014 PG Obim Okeke of the Sacramento Renegades (CA) just finished a visit to USC & is on his way to Stanford for another unofficial"
Okeke preps at Bishop Manogue High in Reno and also is affiliated with ESA Basketball.

Gerry Freitas wrotes this after this year's Bay Area Memorial Day Classic:
"Tremendous upside for this player. Runs the team well and passes with great vision. Great size with excellent ballhandling skills. Can shoot the 3 off the dribble or the catch. Multiple ways to score and uses big frame to get defenders off balance when driving the lane. Good pull up jump shot. Nice prospect!"

Nor Cal Juco Jamboree July 6-7

This begins the run of junior college tournaments that allows spectators to get a sense of who the various teams will be featuring in the coming season:

The Nor Cal Juco Jamboree will be held July 6-7 (Wednesday and Thursday) at Skyline College in San Bruno.    

The event will run from noon to 8 p.m. each day.

Eighteen Northern California junior college teams will participate and the event is NCAA sanctioned, allowing Division I coaches to attend.

This is odd

Arizona Wildcats signee Josiah Turner has withdrawn from the USA Basketball U19 World Championship Team training camp because of unspecified schedule conflicts, according to a press release from USA Basketball.

Turner, a point guard, had been one of 21 players scheduled to be at the camp, which begins today. Twelve players will be selected for the team, which will compete at the U19 World Championships later this summer.

The timing of the withdrawal is curious, as it was announced on May 12 that Turner had been chosen to the camp in Colorado Springs, Colo., so there was ample time to prepare.

The camp figured to be good experience for Turner, who is expected to play a key role on next season's Arizona team, especially with the recent transfer of starting sophomore point guard MoMo Jones.

Others from the soon-to-be Pac-12 at the camp include Cal's Allen Crabbe (the Pac-10 Freshman of the Year last season), Cal's Richard Solomon, Stanford's Anthony Brown and Arizona State incoming freshman guard Jahii Carson.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Trevan Abraham to transfer

Saw on Jeff Goodman's latest transfer list that Trevan Abraham is departing from Rice. Out of Sacramento High, he played in 30 games as a freshman, including 11 starts, with an average of 9.4 minutes a game. Abraham totaled 36 assists to 13 turnovers.

An interview with Ikenna Iroegbu

Neal Nieves recently conducted an interview with former Franklin High point Ikenna Iroegbu, who is heading to Virginia. Note: Ike isn't out of Oakland.

Kids say the darndest things

A line in this Jason Jordan-penned ESPN RISE article literally jumped off the screen:
“A lot of times I wish I could play against guys on different circuits,” Reese said. “I just want to get to play against everyone, but we never get the chance to.”- J-Mychal Reese, Houston Hoops club team
Unfortunately, the dollars and the adults get in the way of doing what is best for the kids.

Phoning it in

Not northern California related but Jeff Eisenberg serves up a feature on what Wednesday was like for one particular 2013 prospect. There's more than a scent of rediculousness in the air.

A Dakarai Allen feature

The Gonzaga fan site The Slipper Still Fits offers a feature on Sheldon High and Play Hard Play Smart 2013 player Dakarai Allen.

Bill Paterson on Sacto area tournies

Bill Paterson has the scoop on the various prep basketball tournament in and around the Sacramento area this summer and includes comments on the debate involving how much is too much for the kids. It's a great read.

Ryan Madry to UCSB

Former Bishop O'Dowd player and West Valley College player and then co-coach Ryan Madry is Goleta bound as an assistant to Bob Williams.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Offers pouring in for Stephen Domingo

At the risk of becoming a member of the Stephen Domingo Marching and Chowder Society, here's yet another tweet, this from Alex Kline/The Recruit Scoop:
"USC & UNLV offered 2013 forward Stephen Domingo of California today. He picked up offers from Arizona, Memphis & Georgetown yesterday"

Dominique Bukasa lands a head coaching position

Sac State Assistant Coach Dominique Bukasa, who played at Sonoma State and also coached at Casa Grande High in Petaluma, has been named the head coach at Lassen Junior College.

Travis Pacos heading to college in Oregon

Ben Enos has the scoop on Travis Pacos of DLS and his collegiate destination.

More offers for Stephen Domingo

Premiere Ball just tweeted this:
"2013 Stephen Domingo picked up a few more offers. spellin out George Town, Indiana, Washington and Arizona"

A lengthy Humboldt State update

Coach Steve Kinder has added eight newcomers to his Humboldt State basketball program -- here's the release:
Adding to his already potent arsenal of returners, Humboldt State head men's basketball coach Steve Kinder is bringing in eight newcomers who will further enhance the Lumberjacks' chances of defending their California Collegiate Athletic Association title this year.

Humboldt State, 26-4 in 2010-11 and California Collegiate Athletic Association champions, return three starters from the squad that qualified for the NCAA Division II postseason for the 10th time in 11 years. They'll supplement the group led by all-CCAA selection Randy Hunter and Brandon Sperling with a talented recruiting class that includes five transfers and two freshmen.

Following are brief biographies of the Jacks' newcomers.

Austin Bryan, a 6-4 guard, joins the Jacks after sitting out the 2010-11 season recovering from a knee injury that occurred late in his 2009-10 debut as a freshman at Dominican University. During his first collegiate season, Bryan averaged 21.5 points per game to lead the PacWest Conference, and was recognized as the league's Freshman of the Year and selected to the all-league first team.

In PacWest conference play, Bryan also led all players in free throw percentage, making 70-of-78 attempts for a .897 mark. He was also first  in 3-pointers made, fourth in steals and fourth in 3-point shooting percentage (.441). Bryan is from Wenatchee, Wash., where he starred for Wenatchee High School, earning Columbia Basin League MVP honors his senior year.

"Austin is a scoring threat from the 3-point line and also has the ability to score from mid-range," Kinder said. "He'll give us another perimeter threat to help fill the void left by (graduated senior) Ernie Spada."

Tavin Hurley
Tavin Hurley
Tavin Hurley adds to the Jacks' size and strength in the post, bringing a 6-9, 235-pound frame to the court. Hurley hails from Joseph, Ore., and played the past two season for Blue Mountain Community College. During the 2010-11 season Hurley averaged 15 points, seven rebounds and two blocked shots per game.

"Tavin is a high profile recruit that we have landed with high expectations," Kinder said.  "We believe he will bring instant numbers in both the scoring and rebound columns."

A teammate of Hurley's at Blue Mountain, Robbie Church offers contrasting skills that include good range and a deft shooting touch. A 6-6 shooting guard from Springfield, Ore., Church is also solid rebounder who Kinder can call upon to guard opponents' power forwards.
Robbie Church
Robbie Church

"Robbie is a lights out shooter with a high and quick release," Kinder said. " With his shooting ability and toughness Robbie is a player we will be counting on to help us contend for the CCAA title."

Another 6-9 presence down low is JC transfer Greg Leslie, who played his freshman season at Grayson Community College in Texas and comes to Humboldt State as a sophomore. Along with strong defensive skills, Leslie adds the ability to step outside and shoot the 3-pointer.

Greg Leslie
Greg Leslie
Leslie prepped at Chaparral High School in Temecula, where he averaged 16.3 points and 6.6 rebounds per game for the Rams during his senior season.

"Greg will present problems for our opponents," Kinder said. "He has the skills to play out on the perimeter and a good sense of team play."

Darren Turpin transfers to Humboldt State from Navarro College in Texas, where former HSU player Eric Colbert serves as assistant coach and recruiting coordinator. A 6-4 junior, Turpin is an undersized post who can also step outside to score. He averaged seven points and five rebounds for the Runnin' Bulldogs last year.

Darren Turpin
Darren Turpin
Turpin played high school basketball for perennial basketball power Dominguez High School in Compton.

"Darren has experienced success in a very good junior college program," Kinder said. "He is a physical player who brings toughness and effort to every possession."

Ethan Dillard, a 6-3 incoming freshman from Bishop Manogue High School in Reno, Nev., will reinforce the Lumberjacks' 3-point game. Dillard averaged 20 points and five rebounds per game this past season for the 4A state runner-up Miners, and was selected to the Reno Gazette Journal's All-North team.

Ethan Dillard
Ethan Dillard
Dillard made 102 3-pointers as a senior forward, including 10 in a single game in December.

"Ethan has a shooter's mentality and is a competitor who won't back down," Kinder said. "He's a great student in the classroom, and I expect him to have an immediate impact on our program."

Colin Lee is a freshman who at 6-5 brings length and size to the guard position. He averaged 17.5 points and 5.6 rebounds per game for Nevada Union High School last year, and was named MVP of the Northern California All-Star Senior Showcase.
Colin Lee
Colin Lee

"Colin has 3-point range and the ability to play on the perimeter," Kinder said.  "He's a skilled player who will fit into our motion offense concepts immediately and contribute to this basketball program his first year."

Meniru Ofodu is a 6-4 transfer from San Jose State, where he redshirted last year for the Spartans. The small forward played prep ball for Heritage High School, earning All-Bay Valley Area League recognition in 2009-10. Ofodu helped Heritage win the BVAL title that season and advance to the second round of the NCS playoffs.

Meniru Ofodu
Meniru Ofodu
"Meniru is a special player who can run, jump, and make spectacular plays," Kinder said.  "He's a real crowd-pleaser who can get the ball to the basket."

Named CCAA and West Region Coach of the year following a spectacular first season guiding the Lumberjacks, Kinder and assistant coach Hardy Asprilla are counting on this recruit class to refuel the Jacks. Along with Spada, the Jacks will be without departed senior Brian Morris, the CCAA and West Region Player of the Year, and also be missing starter Elliot Babcock-Krenk, who decided to forgo his final year of eligibility.

Returning personnel include all-CCAA first team honoree Randy Hunter, who averaged 14.4 points and 7.3 rebounds per game in 2010-11. Also named to the National Association of Basketball Coaches' all-region team, Hunter will be a senior.

Another talented senior, guard Brandon Sperling, earned all-CCAA second team honors, scoring 12.7 points per game last year and dishing a team-high 84 assists. Kyle Baxter, a 6-9 junior with diverse talents as a shooter, rebounder and ball-handler, started all 30 games for HSU a year ago.

DJ Broome, a point guard who led the Jacks in steals last year, also returns, and redshirt sophomore Matt Lipski, a 6-9, 275-pound post player, will see his first action for HSU in the late fall.

Humboldt State opens with a home exhibition game against Simpson University on Oct. 28, then travels for an exhibition game against NCAA DIvision I University of Arizona on Nov. 1.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

A three item post for you

In this article about a departing Fresno State player, a local name also appeared:
"...Bennie Rhodes also left the team, but it's unclear whether he will seek to continue his basketball career.
Rhodes came to FSU as a walk-on from City College of San Francisco.


Joe Davidson remembers now NBA champion Jason Kidd.


Scott Schroeder is a major fan of St. Mary's Mickey McConnell, whose NBA draft status will be fascinating to follow.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Bay Area Hoop review coming in early July

2011 Bay Area Hoop Review

The 2nd annual Bay Area Hoop Review will be held Friday and Saturday July 8 and 9 at San Francisco State University and City College of San Francisco from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. each day.

The event will be NCAA sanctioned allowing Division I coaches to attend (making it Northern California's only NCAA sanctioned event of the summer). Fifty teams from Northern California and others areas will participate.

Every team will play four games (two each day).

Contact Gerry Freitas at 408-998-1327 or email:

Two players from Cabrillo College moving on

Backcourter Markus Duran is walking on at UOP (Pacific) and frontcourter Bert Hall has signed with Azusa Pacific.

On Duran:
(with the ball in the dark jersey)

The MVP of the Coast Conference South Division, the 6-foot-0 175 pound guard averaged 19.8 points per game on 35% shooting from the 3 point line and 85% from the foul line. He led the state the last two years in three-point field goals made for the season

On Hall:
(in the dark jersey, shooting)

Seahawk center Bertram Hall has signed a scholarship offer to transfer to Azusa Pacific University in the fall of 2011. He is a 6-foot-6 220 pound post who was a Second Team All-Coast Conference South selection for the Seahawks. Hall, a native of Tehachapi, CA, averaged 10 points and nearly 9 rebounds a game for the Seahawks and was one of the outstanding defensive players in the conference as he took an astounding 35 charges in 28 games.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Sign #84721 of the Basketball Apocalypse - yikes

In a Rivals Q-and-A feature (a sub is required), Eric Bossi and Jerry Meyer weight in on some overzealous videographers:
"The video/mixtape crews have now become a fixture at events. Is there any concern that their presence is beginning to impact the way players conduct themselves on the floor?

Bossi: This is something that has been discussed quite a bit at events this spring. There have been instances of kids picking up technical fouls for walking over and saying stuff to the cameras after plays. Some have also complained about seeing camera guys running to chest bump, dap up or shout out instructions to players during games. While these are isolated incidents, they do have a negative impact on the way some perceive the mixtape phenomenon, culture or whatever you want to call it. Over the years I've become friends with many mixtape guys and I admire their grinder's mentality and enjoy watching the increasingly slick and entertaining videos they put together. But I've also seen an increasing amount of inappropriate behavior from guys who are there as credentialed media. Remember, credentialed media is supposed to cover the action, not insert itself into the action.

Meyer: It has been impacting the way players act and this spring it has become glaringly obvious that it is having a negative impact on the game. It is disheartening enough to know that prospects are playing more for their ranking and for the coaches than to win the game. Now we have prospects constantly aware of the cameras and are playing to impress video guys who have attached themselves as ad hoc publicists. It seems to be the next step in the denigration of American basketball.

National love for Aaron Gordon + plus some interesting numbers

Jerry Meyer (a Rivals sub is required) posted some interesting notes and numbers today. First the former:
* Stephen Domingo has an 8-foot-8 reach at 6-foot-4.

* Aaron Gordon and Jabari Parker both have 6-foot-11 wingspans, but Gordon has a 3-inch higher reach and is an inch and a half taller.
Coming off an ankle sprain, elite forward Aaron Gordon made a significant impact at the 16-Under USA national team trials...
...Gordon, a 6-foot-7 combo forward from San Jose (Calif.) Archbishop Mitty High, quickly made it clear that there is an elite prospect besides Jabari Parker vying for a spot on the USA team. Quick off the ground and quick to change direction, Gordon stood out with both his athleticism and his shooting touch.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Brenden Glapion to Seattle

6-foot-3 Brenden Glapion, SanFranPrep's Athletic Academic Association Player of the Year, is headed to Seattle U.

Out of Washington High, Glapion will be a walk-on for Coach Cameron Dollar, the former UCLA backcourter and Washington assistant coach.

If the rumor comes to fruition, Seattle is soon to become a basketball playing member of the Western Athletic Conference so Glapion will return to the Bay Area when the Redhawks come to play San Jose State.

Johnny Mrlik to Vassar

St. Ignatius' Johnny Mrlik, the SanFranPrep's City Player of the Year, is headed to Vassar where he will be able to play both basketball and baseball.

Vassar, well known for its academic reputation, is located in Poughkeepsie, NY, 75 miles north of New York City. Coach Del Harris operates the D-3 program

Here's a mid-January YouTube video of Mrlik in action.