Posted by Jeff Borzello
HAMPTON, Va. – A season ago, Team Final was loaded with some of the top seniors in the country. Michael Gilchrist, Rakeem Christmas and a host of other highly-ranked 2011 players led Final to the Nike EYBL semifinals.
This year, the roster consists entirely of 2013 and 2014 players, with not one rising high school senior in sight.
While Austin Colbert is the headliner, two of the better ones this weekend were Rondae Jefferson and Davon Reed.
Jefferson is the younger brother of Temple sophomore Rahlir Jefferson, a very good player in his own right. Rondae is an effective lefty who is active around the basket but did struggle to finish at times. The 6-foot-5 wing has a good build and can shoot it from the perimeter.
Right now, the Chester (Pa.) product’s list includes the entire Big Five – Temple, Saint Joseph’s, La Salle, Penn and Villanova – as well as Rutgers, Pittsburgh and Kentucky.
Reed, a 6-foot-5 guard, is a long and athletic scorer who can really light it up from the perimeter. He has a very good stroke from behind the arc and is capable of getting his shot off under duress. Reed also had a couple of nice buckets around the rim.
Reed, who plays his high school ball at Princeton Day School (N.J.), listed St. John’s, La Salle, Rutgers, West Virginia, Seton Hall, VCU, Cincinnati, Providence and Florida.
“We’re playing against the best of the best,” Reed said over the weekend at the Nike EYBL Hampton.
For Team Final, being competitive against the field now requires leaning on rising juniors as opposed to tested veterans.