Tag:July Recruiting Period
Posted on: July 7, 2009 9:04 pm
Edited on: July 7, 2009 9:09 pm

Nike does not want you to see that dunk

AKRON, Ohio -- You want to see video of Xavier's Jordan Crawford dunking on LeBron James?

If so, too bad.

Because you're not going to see it.

Thanks to Nike.

Turns out, there were at least two cameras rolling Monday night when Crawford dunked on James during a pick-up game here at the LeBron James Skills Academy. It was a two-handed jam, the kind that would've circulated quickly on YouTube. But Nike officials eliminated that possibility shortly after the dunk happened by allegedly confiscating tapes from various cameramen.

Freelance photographer Ryan Miller was one of the cameramen shooting the game.

He told CBSSports.com that Nike Basketball Senior Director Lynn Merritt took his tape.

"He just said, 'We have to take your tape,'" Miller said. "They took it from other guys, too."

Worth noting is that there is no policy against filming at the LeBron James Skills Academy, and Miller said he had been filming all day without incident. Nobody ever told him to stop. Nobody ever said there was a problem ... until after Crawford dunked on James.

"LeBron called Lynn over and told him something," Miller said. "That's how I knew his name was Lynn. LeBron said, 'Hey, Lynn. Come here.'"

Minutes later, Miller said Merritt demanded his tape.

"There's nothing I can think of besides LeBron just not wanting it online," Miller said. "It's a good story to tell people, I guess. But then again, I'm kind of pissed. I lost my tape."
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: July 7, 2009 6:30 pm
Edited on: July 7, 2009 6:37 pm

Breaking news: College recruiting is still shady

AKRON, Ohio -- You might think the slew of negative attention that USC and Memphis have endured in recent months would scare college basketball recruiting straight, at least to some degree. But if you think that, you are stupid. And I offer DaJuan Coleman as Exhibit 1A.

Coleman is a star of the Class of 2012.

That means he just finished his freshman year of high school.

He's one of only three Class of 2012 prospects invited to the LeBron James Skills Academy, and on Tuesday he casually spoke about the dangers of being an elite prospect identified this early. "People have offered me stuff, but I don't take it," Coleman told CBSSports.com. "I know what's good."

If you didn't catch that, what we have is a rising sophomore already being "offered stuff."

And really, that's the problem.

As long as elite prospects can be identified at an early age, there are going to be people offering stuff to those same elite prospects. The O.J. Mayo case will not make it stop. People -- like runners or agents or, in some cases, actual college coaches -- will offer stuff to prospects, to the families of prospects, and to anybody else they think might be close enough to the prospects to have some sort of influence. In most cases, eventually, somebody will take something because, really, how could they not? And then two or three years later, millions will pretend these same elite prospects are "amateur" athletes while willfully (and stupidly) buying into the myth that there is such a thing at the highest levels of this sport.

It's crazy.

And what it highlights is a system flawed to its core, a system that on one end requires agents and runners and coaches to secure elite prospects to get wealthy, and on the other end asks those same elite prospects to never take a free meal, much less a cell phone, car or cash. It's unnatural and impossible to make work. Which is why I always shrug my shoulders when people ask what the NCAA must do to eliminate cheating in college basketball? The truth is that folks won't cease breaking rules until the rules are eliminated, because the alternative is to eliminate the money being made and the money at stake, and, as you know, that's not going anywhere.
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: July 7, 2009 11:52 am
Edited on: July 7, 2009 11:57 am

Xavier's Crawford dunked on King James

AKRON, Ohio -- The word when I arrived at the LeBron James Skills Academy was that Monday's best highlight came in a pick-up game featuring the college players and James himself. According to the collection of NBA scouts and other folks here, Xavier's Jordan Crawford dunked on James pretty good. So I had to find out whether it was true.

"It happened, and it was bad," said Michael Gilchrist, the top player in the Class of 2011. "That was something to see."

Sorry I missed it.
Category: NCAAB
Posted on: July 6, 2009 9:50 pm
Edited on: July 7, 2009 12:04 am

Day 1 amounts to ... nothing

AKRON, Ohio -- Yep, I had travel problems.

My first flight today was cancelled.

So I had to get rebooked.

All of which forced me to arrive in beautiful Ohio much later than anticipated, way too late to see anything at the LeBron James Skills Academy. Consequently, I'm at the hotel entertaining myself with Michael Jackson coverage because there is nothing funnier than watching his ex-wife threaten a reporter before dropping an F-bomb, over and over again.

Anyway ...

Tuesday should be great.

Here's the schedule of things at the LeBron James Skills Academy:

9:00-11:00 am: High school players workout
11:00-1:00 pm: College players workout
1:45-2:45 pm: High school players workout
7:15-9:00 pm: College players workout

  • Harrison Barnes (No. 1 prospect in Class of 2010)
  • Michael Gilchrist (No. 1 prospect in Class of 2011)
  • Austin Rivers (No. 3 prospect in Class of 2011)
  • Jared Sullinger (No. 4 prospect in Class of 2010)
  • Rakeem Christmas (No. 5 prospect in Class of 2011)
  • Jereme Richmond (No. 6 prospect in Class of 2010)
  • Marquis Teague (No. 6 prospect in Class of 2011)
  • Kyrie Irving (No. 7 prospect in Class of 2010)
  • Johnny Bryant (No. 7 prospect in Class of 2011)
  • Will Barton (No. 9 prospect in Class of 2010)
  • Josh Selby (No. 10 prospect in the Class of 2010)
  • Willie Warren (Projected No. 3 pick in 2010 NBA Draft)
  • Cole Aldrich (Projected No. 4 pick in 2010 NBA Draft)
  • Al-Farouq Aminu (Projected No. 8 pick in 2010 NBA Draft)
  • Devin Ebanks (Projected No. 11 pick in 2010 NBA Draft)
  • Kyle Singler (Projected No. 16 pick in 2010 NBA Draft)
  • Jerome Jordan (Projected No. 20 pick in 2010 NBA Draft)
  • Larry Sanders (Projected No. 25 pick in 2010 NBA Draft)
  • LeBron James (Best basketball player in the world)
(Class of 2010 and 2011 rankings provided by Scout.com; 2010 NBA Draft projections provided by DraftExpress.com; Opinion on LeBron James provided by Gary Parrish, who does not think it's even debatable.)

Click here to follow Gary Parrish on Twitter.

Category: NCAAB
Posted on: July 6, 2009 10:05 am

College rosters for LeBron Academy finalized

One of the neatest things about the LeBron James Skills Academy for elite high school prospects is that some of the best college players also gather at the University of Akron to play pick-up games throughout the week. This year is no exception. The following is a list of college players in attendance:
  • Cole Aldrich (Kansas)
  • Jeff Allen (Virginia Tech)
  • Al-Farouq Aminu (Wake Forest)
  • Patrick Christopher (California)
  • Dwayne Collins (Miami)
  • Jordan Crawford (Xavier)
  • Malcolm Delaney (Virginia Tech)
  • Devin Ebanks (West Virginia)
  • Yancy Gates (Cincinnati)
  • Manny Harris (Michigan)
  • Jerome Jordan (Tulsa)
  • Kalin Lucas (Michigan State)
  • Larry Sanders (VCU)
  • Iman Shumpert (Georgia Tech)
  • DeShawn Sims (Michigan)
  • Kyle Singler (Duke)
  • Edwin Ubiles (Siena)
  • Greivis Vasquez (Maryland)
  • Willie Warren (Oklahoma)
  • Chris Wright (Dayton)
I'm flying to Akron for the LeBron James Skills Academy today.

My complete schedule for the July recruiting period looks like this:

July 6-7: LeBron James Skills Academy in Akron, Ohio
July 8-9: King City Classic in Cleveland, Ohio
July 12-15: Nike Peach Jam in North Augusta, S.C.
July 22-26: Adidas Super 64 /Reebok Summer Championships /The Main Event in Las Vegas

Click here to follow Gary Parrish on Twitter.
Category: NCAAB
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com