Tag:Syracuse
Posted on: October 25, 2011 2:33 pm
Edited on: October 25, 2011 2:43 pm
 

DaJuan Coleman stays home, picks Syracuse

By Jeff Borzello

The first time a big man named Coleman came out of Syracuse, he was an All-American in college and an NBA All-Star.

Now, head coach Jim Boeheim will get the closest thing to Derrick Coleman, as five-star center DaJuan Coleman committed to the Orange on Tuesday afternoon during a press conference at his high school.

"The school I'll be attending this coming fall will be . . . ," Coleman said, before donning a Syracuse hat. He said that he has known he wanted to pick the Orange for the last month, but took visits to Ohio State and Kentucky just to make sure.

"I wanted to make the right decision," he said. 

While DaJuan Coleman has no blood relation to Derrick Coleman, they have similar build and both are legends in Upstate New York. The elder Coleman did his damage at the college level, but the high school version has dominated at Jamesville-Dewitt (N.Y.) for years.

Make no mistake; this was a recruit Syracuse could not afford to lose.

Coleman was right in the Orange’s backyard, and had been on the Syracuse campus a number of times. His high school teammate, Brandon Triche, is currently a starting guard for Boeheim, and the Orange have been the favorite since the beginning for Coleman’s services.

"It's close to home," Coleman said. "Hanging out with the players, they made me feel like I was home."

Moreover, whenever Kentucky’s involved, the smart money seems to always be on John Calipari and the Wildcats. In head-to-head battles over the past few years, Calipari has rarely lost, racking up the top recruiting class in the country more often than not. For Syracuse to defend its home territory and beat Kentucky – and Ohio State – for a five-star recruit, it’s a big win for the Orange.

As for Coleman, he should make an immediate impact for the Orange. With Fab Melo potentially leaving after this coming year, and Baye Moussa Keita and Rakeem Christmas very raw offensively, Coleman will add a dimension Syracuse will be lacking.

The No. 9-ranked recruit in CBSSports.com’s class of 2012, Coleman is a 6-foot-9 center who is one of the more dominant low-post prospects in the country. He carves out space down low with his mammoth, 280-lb. body. Once he gets position, his good hands and assortment of moves make him difficult to stop with his back to the basket. He rebounds extremely well in his area, and controls the lane defensively. Coleman has improved his passing and face-up game, but he still needs to get in better shape on a consistent basis.

"A double-double guy every game," Coleman said.  

With his talent level and potential, Syracuse could have its next All-America big man – and his last name just happens to be Coleman.

Photo: MaxPreps

Posted on: October 24, 2011 5:22 pm
Edited on: October 24, 2011 11:04 pm
 

Big man, big recruit: Coleman makes pick Tuesday

By Jeff Borzello

The question surrounding DaJuan Coleman throughout his entire recruitment centered around Syracuse.

After all, the five-star big man attends Jamesville-Dewitt (N.Y.) near Syracuse and has been to the upstate New York campus on numerous occasions. Moreover, his former high school teammate, Brandon Triche, is currently a junior guard for the Orange.

With that said, his decision process has lasted far longer than expected -- is that a sign that Syracuse has been passed in Coleman's mind?

We will all find out on Tuesday afternoon, as Coleman will announce his commitment at a 2:30 p.m. press conference at his high school.

Along with Syracuse, the other schools in the running are Ohio State and Kentucky.

Coleman visited Kentucky for its Big Blue Madness, and the Wildcats have made up plenty of ground in this recruitment. In the summer, Coleman's AAU coach told me that Kentucky was "1A" in the race.

He has also taken a visit to Ohio State, and he has said he would like to be a Jared Sullinger-type player for the Buckeyes.

Coleman, a 6-foot-9 big man, is ranked No. 15 in CBSSports.com's Top 100. At one point, he was in the running for the top spot in the class but he has slipped some over the past year. Despite that, his physical prowess and soft touch around the rim make him very difficult to stop down low. He uses his body well and can grab rebounds consistently. If he tones his body and gets in better shape, Coleman has the potential to be a dominant force in college.

Which college will that be? We'll find out in less than 24 hours.

Photo via Lonnie Webb 
Posted on: September 30, 2011 10:56 am
Edited on: September 30, 2011 11:14 am
 

Ishmail Wainright happy with move to Montrose

By Jeff Borzello

When Ishmail Wainright made the move from Raytown South (Mo.) to Montrose Christian (Md.), a lot of things changed.

Wainright was suddenly nearly 1,000 miles from home, with new friends, new teammates, new style of play and more pressure. But the biggest difference for Wainright?

“The weather,” he said. “It rains too much.”

Not surprisingly, Wainright is extremely happy with his decision to leave home and go to the vaunted private school near Washington D.C.

“This was one of the best moves by far,” he said. “The only move, really. It’s a great education.”

Although the season has not yet started, Wainright has already noticed a difference in the attendance at the preseason workouts. The door leading to the gym is a revolving door of high-major head coaches and some of the best recruiters in the country.

UCLA, Texas, Kansas State, Alabama, Providence, Virginia Tech, Syracuse, UMKC, Georgetown, Maryland, Villanova have all stopped by. St. John’s, Texas A&M, Baylor and Missouri were there on Wednesday. Louisville is expected to come soon, while Memphis set up a date to check out Wainright as well.

“I didn’t know it was going to be like this,” Wainright said. “I was just thinking in my head, ‘I don’t know who is going to see me, I don’t know who likes my game.’

“When I got there, coach [Stu] Vetter sat me down and said, ‘Now you know you will be hearing from coaches that you’ve never heard from, right?’ I just giggled. I thought he was playing, but it was for real.”

Wainright has had an interesting recruitment so far. He committed to Missouri in May, becoming new head coach Frank Haith’s first big-time recruit since taking over the Tigers. In late June, though, but suddenly decommitted and reopened his process.

After a few underwhelming performances with Memphis YOMCA on the Nike AAU circuit in the spring, Wainright won back his reputation with the KC 76ers in Las Vegas. He led his team to a surprising Fab 48 title, outplaying No. 1 prospect Jabari Parker in a head-to-head battle.

Wainright currently holds offers from Syracuse, Baylor, Missouri, Kansas, Kansas State, Texas, Texas A&M, Colorado, St. John’s, UMKC, Florida, Nebraska and Louisville.

While he doesn’t have any specific visits planned, he wants to attend Louisville’s Midnight Madness festivities.

“I don’t have [a favorite] right now,” Wainright said.

Wainright, a 6-foot-5 small forward, is ranked as a five-star prospect in CBSSports.com’s Top 100 rankings for 2013. He is No. 17 in the country.

Photo: STLToday

Posted on: September 22, 2011 5:03 pm
 

Tyler Roberson attracting plenty of attention

By Jeff Borzello

Fairly unknown nationally, Tyler Roberson was one of the more underrated players heading into the LeBron James Skills Academy.

While there, Roberson showcased his inside-outside game and parlayed that performance into a top-75 ranking and plenty of new college interest.

“My game changed a lot and then I had opportunities to showcase myself,” Roberson said.

Roberson, a 6-foot-7 junior forward from Roselle Catholic (N.J.), holds offers from Syracuse, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Seton Hall, Rutgers, Kansas State, Saint Joseph’s and Virginia Tech. Connecticut and others have also been through to watch him work out over the past couple of weeks.

“More schools have been recruiting me,” Roberson said of the uptick in recruitment since his standout play during the summer.

He has not taken any unofficial visits and does not plan to anytime soon. Roberson is willing to take his time with the recruiting process, but he knows what he is looking for in a school.

“A school with good academics,” Roberson said. “And one that fits my style of play.”

He is ranked No. 62 in CBSSports.com’s Top 100.

Posted on: September 16, 2011 6:53 pm
 

Syracuse lands commitment from Jerami Grant

By Jeff Borzello

The last month of Jerami Grant’s recruitment had been a roller coaster. He was rumored to have trimmed his list to Maryland and Rutgers, and then a new list of Rutgers, Notre Dame and Syracuse was released.

Throughout it all, though, sources close to the situation continued to say Syracuse was squarely in the mix – and even in front for Grant’s services.

On Friday, Grant justified all the Syracuse talk by announcing his commitment to the Orange.

Team Takeover coach Keith Stevens confirmed the news to CBSSports.com.

Grant, a 6-foot-7 forward from DeMatha (Md.) and the son of former NBA veteran Harvey Grant, chose Syracuse over Big East rivals Notre Dame and Syracuse. The high schooler is also the younger brother of Jerian Grant, a sophomore at Notre Dame, and Jerai Grant, who just finished his career at Clemson.

On the court, Grant made a name for himself over the past couple of years. He is long and athletic, and improved his passing and ball-handling skills. He is a menace in the mid-range, using his ability to attack the rim and knock down jumpers to create matchup problems. His length should be an asset in Syracuse’s zone defense.

Grant is ranked No. 49 in CBSSports.com’s Top 100.

Photo: 247Sports.com 

Posted on: August 3, 2011 3:25 pm
Edited on: August 3, 2011 8:02 pm
 

Notebook: Chris Davenport stands out in Orlando

By Jeff Borzello

The magic of the July live period is the prospects one finds when watching someone else.

The Florida Rams Black team is home to top-20 point guard Kasey Hill, as well as stock-risers Landry Nnoko and Dillon Graham. In Orlando, though, the player who stood out to some onlookers was Chris Davenport.

More on Recruiting

A junior from Montverde Academy (Fla.), Davenport is a 6-foot-7 combo forward who is explosive off the floor and has a wide-ranging skill set. He can make plays in a variety of ways. While best-suited for the wing, Davenport is not afraid to mix it up in the paint and can play the power forward spot in a smaller lineup.

“I want to show coaches my talent and make players around me better,” he said. “I’ve played good so far. I’m rebounding the ball, playing in transition.”

It turns out colleges have already been turned onto Davenport.

He holds offers from Florida State, Clemson and South Florida, with interest coming from Georgia Tech, Penn State and UCF.

“I’m keeping it open, I like them all so far,” Davenport said.

He’s still at least a year from making a decision, but Davenport is looking to be successful at the next level – both on and off the court.

“Great education,” he said. “And a program with a good coaching staff that is dedicated to winning.”

Sanjay Lumpkin stays within himself

With the bright lights of Las Vegas and the staring eyes of big-time coaches following a prospect’s every move, many players start to do too much.

Sanjay Lumpkin went the opposite route: he tried to ignore the coaches in the bleachers.

“I want to play as if no coaches are watching, not let it affect me,” Lumpkin said. “It’s not about individually showing off. Coaches didn’t come to see you do that.”

Lumpkin, a 6-foot-6 guard from Benilde-Saint Margaret (Minn.), is a difficult match-up due to his size and ball-handling ability. He is long and can finish around the rim, while also able to initiate offense for teammates.

He holds offers from Northwestern and Richmond, with interest from Stanford, Colorado and Washington State.

Lumpkin is looking to make a decision in the near future.

“I’m looking for a place to play my game, a place where I fit well in the system,” he said.

Lights-out gunner pops for George Mason

Team Takeover (D.C.) guard Patrick Holloway committed to George Mason, choosing the Patriots over Saint Joseph’s, Kent State, George Washington and Delaware.

Holloway, a 6-foot-1 shooter from Paul VI (Va.), is lights-out from behind the arc.

“My family and I really liked the coaching staff and the experience they have,” he said. “It was a good distance from home and my family can be a part of this experience. Also, they are looked at to be a top team.”

News and Notes: Louis Dabney, a 6-foot-3 guard from Riverside Academy (La.), popped for Tulane on Tuesday . . . UC-Riverside picked up a commitment from Dayton Boddie, a 6-foot-3 guard from El Camino High School (Calif.) . . . Western Carolina picked up two commitments this week: Rhett Harrelson and Justin Browning, both from Alabama . . . Tuesday afternoon, Hofstra hosted 2012 prospects Jimmy Hall and Maurice Watson . . . Top-25 2013 wing Brannen Greene visited Louisville on Wednesday . . . Four-star senior Jerami Grant, from DeMatha (Md.), took a trip to Syracuse. Word on the street is the Orange could be the leader for Grant . . . C.J. Jones, from Meanstreets (Ill.), committed to Manhattan Monday night . . . Indianapolis guard Mike Ramey committed to Ball State . . . After nabbing Zac Irvin on Sunday, Michigan got another 2013 commitment, as top-75 guard Derrick Walton pledged to the Wolverines.

Posted on: July 27, 2011 11:57 am
Edited on: July 27, 2011 1:59 pm
 

Isaiah Lewis loading up on college offers

By Jeff Borzello

ORLANDO, Fla. – The July AAU circuit is normally the pinnacle of a top prospect’s season, considering all the high-profile events they attend and big-time coaches they see.

For Isaiah Lewis, improving his all-around skillset takes precedence.

“I mean, the tournaments are cool, but working on my game is more important,” Lewis said. “This year, I’m going to play the point guard in high school, so I’m learning how to be a passer and still score at the same time.”

Lewis, a 6-foot-3 junior from Christ the King (N.Y.), shares the spotlight in high school with Connecticut-bound Omar Calhoun, but he is receiving plenty of notice on his own.

So far, Lewis claims offers from Miami (Fl.), Florida, Florida State, St. John’s, Seton Hall, Oklahoma State, Kansas, Arkansas, Oregon State, West Virginia and Memphis. Other schools showing interest include Kentucky, North Carolina, North Carolina State, Syracuse and Villanova.

He said Kansas, Memphis and Florida are showing the most interest right now.

“Grades are a big factor in the school I chose,” Lewis said. “Also, the fan base and whether I think the coaching staff can get me ready for the next level.”

He plans to visit Florida, Florida State and Memphis during August, and could trip to Kansas for the Jayhawks’ Midnight Madness in October.

Two schools are currently standing out for Lewis: Kansas and Memphis.

More on Recruiting

“Coach [Josh] Pastner, I just liked the way he talked to me and my father,” he said of Memphis. “He told from the gate, he thinks I can come in, play and contribute. He also told me what he likes about my game.”

Kansas offered Lewis during his sophomore season, and the Jayhawks remain near the top of his list.

“The tradition there is crazy,” Lewis said. “Coach [Bill] Self loves winning. He also compared me to a similar version of Deron Williams, being a big guard who can score and pass.”

While it may seem like the New York City product is going through the process pretty quickly, Lewis has no plans on making a decision anytime soon.

“I’m going to take my time with everything,” he said. “I mean, I’m not saying I’m going to wait, but I may commit after my junior year.”

As we’ve seen with Lewis, getting better is more important than anything.

Photo: The Shiver

Posted on: July 18, 2011 5:02 pm
Edited on: July 20, 2011 10:53 am
 

2014's Noah Vonleh keeps growing -- literally

By Jeff Borzello

Right now, Noah Vonleh is one of the top-10 prospects in the class of 2014. At 6-foot-7, he is a matchup nightmare due to his versatility and wide-ranging talents.

The scary part? Vonleh isn’t done growing.

“My doctor said I could grow to be 6’10”,” he said.

If the New Hampton (N.H.) product gets taller and keeps his current skill set, his potential is through the roof. Vonleh is very long and rangy, and has the ability to handle, pass and finish at the rim.

“I want to prove that I’m one of the best in my class,” he said. “One of the top five in my class.”

Despite his rapid improvement over the last year, Vonleh is still working on certain things in his game.

“I want to attack the basket better, and not get in too deep. I have to work on my pull up,” he said. “I’m in the gym everyday.”

It’s very early in his recruitment, but Vonleh already has offers from Boston College, Pittsburgh, Providence, Syracuse and Georgia Tech, with interest also from Tennessee, North Carolina, Duke, Connecticut and West Virginia.

At his current size, Vonleh is a five-star prospect. If he gets to 6-foot-10? The sky is the limit.

Photo: Mass Rivals 

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com