Tag:Florida State
Posted on: June 28, 2011 12:55 pm
Edited on: June 28, 2011 1:21 pm

Danuel House's school list goes from 2 to 35


By Jeff Borzello

Before the Best Buy Classic in Chicago over Memorial Day Weekend, Danuel House was hearing from two schools, TCU and Jacksonville.

After a breakout performance in the Windy City, House has seen his stock skyrocket.

“It was at two, then 32, now 35,” he said. “It’s still new to me.”

House, a 6-foot-6 small forward from Elkins, Texas, has offers from Louisville, Baylor, Texas, California, Colorado, USC, Houston and, yes, TCU and Jacksonville. Arizona, North Carolina, South Carolina, Missouri, Kansas, Maryland, Florida State, South Florida, Gonzaga and Providence have also reached out to the rising senior.

“It’s good exercise for the brain,” said House, referring to rattling off his long list of suitors. “It’s fun.”

House is a terrific athlete who is at his best when driving to the basket and finishing at the rim. He is great in transition and also handles the ball fairly well. His outside shot needs work, but he does have the ability to knock down 3-pointers. With his length and athleticism, he is a solid defender.

It doesn’t take long to see his potential, which makes it even more surprising that it took so long for House to burst onto the scene.

“People were seeing me for the first time,” he said.

Playing alongside Isaiah Austin on Texas Pro, don’t expect House's stock to collapse anytime soon.

Posted on: June 28, 2011 10:53 am
Edited on: June 28, 2011 11:17 am

Chris Walker with quick ascent to the top


By Jeff Borzello

Unlike some of his counterparts in the class of 2013, Chris Walker’s rise to the top-tier of the rankings has not been a long process.

Walker’s athleticism and rebounding ability have always been attractive, but when he grew to 6-foot-10 and still improved his all-around game, he became a can’t-miss prospect.

“It was just me playing hard,” Walker said. “I tried to show everyone what I could do. I put in the work. I improved my game tremendously.”

His improvement is obvious immediately. While he still needs to work on his post moves, Walker has impressed with his ability to run the floor and make plays in transition. He can face-up and score with short jumpers or drives to the rim. Because of his length, he is a good shot-blocker.

The big man from Holmes County, Fla., has heard from a number of schools, including Kentucky, Florida, Florida State, Syracuse, Memphis, North Carolina State, Ohio State, Tennessee, Texas, Alabama, Georgia and Kansas.

Five are standing out right now: Kentucky, Florida, Syracuse, Memphis and Kansas.

“I want a college that, off the court, makes you a better person,” Walker said. “I also want a great relationship with the coaches.”

Posted on: June 21, 2011 3:29 pm
Edited on: June 21, 2011 3:43 pm
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Posted on: June 21, 2011 9:41 am
Edited on: June 21, 2011 3:45 pm

Joell James out to prove he's more than hype


By Jeff Borzello

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Despite standing 6-foot-10 and hovering around the 300-pound mark, Joell James knows he won’t dominate against other big-time players on size alone.

“I have to hustle,” James said. “You can have no talent, and still be a better player than someone else just by hustling.”

James, a rising senior from Dwyer High School (Fla.), certainly has talent. For someone so big, he runs the floor and moves around without the ball effectively. James can face-up and knock down shots inside the arc, and he is also adept at scoring around the rim. Because of his size, he is a presence defensively and on the glass.

Rising up the rankings in the spring, James went to the NBPA Top 100 Camp to prove he wasn’t all hype.

“It’s not about your name, it’s about what you do out there,” he said. “I need to show I can do it.”

Because of his stellar play over the last few months, James has been hearing from Florida, Florida State, West Virginia, Ohio State, North Carolina, Maryland, Louisville and Miami the most.

He said Florida, Florida State, West Virginia, Ohio State and North Carolina are standing out to him as a top five, with the Gators currently on top.

“It’s a state school, and coach [Billy] Donovan is a great guy,” James said. “It’s a great program, and they’re known for putting out big men.”

The Floridian has taken trips to in-state schools Florida, Miami (Fla.) and UCF in the past.

A decision does not appear to be on the horizon for James, although he does have more immediate goals for the summer.

“I’m too heavy, I want to lose about 20 pounds,” he said. “And I just want to improve.”

Photo: Pack Pride

Posted on: June 20, 2011 2:08 pm
Edited on: June 21, 2011 4:07 pm

Kareem Canty nearing end of process


By Jeff Borzello

Over the past year, Kareem Canty has undergone several changes in his recruitment.

Canty, a 6-foot-1 point guard from New York, started out as a class of 2011 prospect with mostly mid-major offers but then decided to reclassify and head to Bridgton Academy (Me.). Once there, he became one of the top-10 players at his position in the class of 2012, and therefore had plenty of big-time schools on his trail.  

Now, it looks like Canty is nearing the end of his process – he has trimmed his list of schools to three: Florida State, Miami (Fl.) and Xavier.

“I chose those three because of the winning tradition at Xavier; the coaching staff at Miami has been recruiting me since George Mason and wanted me before anybody else saw me; and Florida State lets his guards play,” Canty said on Monday.

With the schools so close to each other at this point, Canty said his next destination will be determined by where he can come in immediately and get on the floor.

“The school I feel I could play right away and make the biggest impact,” he said.

Canty took a trip recently to Xavier and will visit Miami next week, and will wait to decide until after his trip to Coral Gables.

He is ready to get the process finished.

“Real soon – like the next two to three weeks,” Canty said. 

Photo: NY Post 

Posted on: June 17, 2011 5:03 pm
Edited on: June 17, 2011 6:05 pm

Charles Mann boosts recruitment in spring


By Jeff Borzello

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – Heading into the Real Deal in the Rock in April, Charles Mann was looking to make a name for himself.

The 6-foot-4 guard from Union Grove (Ga.) was scheduled to go up against Dream Vision and Shabazz Muhammad, the nation’s best perimeter player.

“I just wanted to play my game,” Mann said. “I got out there and didn’t worry what his name was.”

Mann said he outscored Muhammad, 28-13, and was the primary defender on him the entire game.

“I held him,” Mann said.

Since then, his recruitment has blown up, with Connecticut, Georgia, Virginia, Virginia Tech, Miami (Fla.), UCF, Georgia Tech, Florida, Florida State and Tennessee all pursuing Mann.

Six schools are standing out: Georgia, Georgia Tech, Miami, Virginia, Florida State and Virginia Tech.

“I definitely want to take officials to Georgia, Florida State and Georgia Tech,” he said. “I haven’t decided on the other two.”

When it comes time to decide on a school, Mann knows he wants to contribute immediately once he gets there.

“I’m looking for playing time," he said. "I want to come in as a freshman and start. I’m trying to get better, get to the next level.”

Unfortunately for Mann, he injured his ankle recently and was only at 70 percent entering the camp. After playing with the injury for one game, it was decided that he would shut it down for the rest of camp.

Before that, Mann wanted to continue his momentum from earlier in the spring.

“I want to show I’m just as good as everybody else,” he said. “I don’t worry about my ranking.”

Posted on: June 15, 2011 10:39 am
Edited on: June 15, 2011 11:06 am

Sam Cassell Jr. relishes father's shadow


By Jeff Borzello

BRONX, N.Y. – Some people might think having a famous NBA player as a father could provide added pressure or constantly create unfair comparisons.

That’s not the case for Sam Cassell Jr., who enjoys being the son of a 15-year NBA veteran.

“It’s been wonderful,” Cassell Jr. said. “I know everyone is watching me when I play. I get to show what I can do.”

Cassell Jr. is a 6-foot-4 Baltimore native who plays his high school ball at Notre Dame Prep (Mass.). His length and size give him an edge over most opponents, and he is aggressive when it comes to attacking the basket. Cassell Jr. is a very good defender because of his frame, but is looking to get faster.

“I’m trying to become a pure point guard,” he said. “I’m working on my ball-handling and I have to get quicker to guard other point guards.”

Cassell Jr. has a variety of schools pursuing him at this point, listing UNLV, Arkansas, Missouri, Florida State, Butler, Clemson and Morgan State.

No one is standing out at this point, but he still knows what he needs in a school.

“I’m looking at the coaching,” Cassell Jr. said. “And the atmosphere of the team.”

Posted on: June 13, 2011 5:02 pm
Edited on: June 13, 2011 5:53 pm

Skylar Spencer sorting through recruiting process


By Jeff Borzello

BRONX, N.Y. – Although most of the teams at this past weekend’s Rumble in the Bronx were from the New York metropolitan area, it was hard not to notice Los Angeles native Skylar Spencer.

Playing for Brandon Jennings-affiliated Team Jennings, Spencer looked the part of a high-major recruit. The 6-foot-8 power forward has a long, built frame that makes him a matchup problem inside. He knows how to get position on the block, and can play with his back to the basket. While he needs to refine his post moves, he is effective around the rim. Defensively and on the glass, Spencer is outstanding due to his athleticism. He also runs the floor well for someone his size.

The Price (Calif.) product is looking to expand his game and become even more of a mismatch.

“I’m working on my outside game,” Spencer said. “I’m trying to be more versatile, I want to work on my ball-handling.”

Spencer is one of the top post players on the West coast in the class of 2012, and he is making his way through the recruiting process.

Right now, he is focused on USC, Washington, Florida State, California and Gonzaga, with two schools sitting in the driver’s seat.

“I like Florida State because of their playing style,” Spencer said. “And Gonzaga, they feed the ball to the post.”

Even though he is trying to become an inside-outside threat, Spencer prefers playing near the basket and is therefore looking for a school that isn’t averse to involving big men in the offense.

“I’m looking to see how I fit into the offense,” he said when asked what he wants in a school. “Also, education and coaching.”

Playing under former Syracuse guard and NBA veteran Jason Hart on the AAU circuit, Spencer will continue to garner attention regardless of the city.

Photo: Max Preps

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