Friday, May 25, 2018

Bossi's Updated 2021 Player Rankings

Reprint from Eric Bossi, Rivals.com
In this week's Twitter Tuesday, we check in on the recruitment of five-star 
, evaluate Villanova's late 2018 options, look at the potential 2021 rankings and more.  
Ctdspyhqsojhd3eybmjg
Cole Anthony
Nick Lucero/Rivals.com
First of all, 
 has been tremendous this spring. The point guard is arguably the most productive player in the country and even at No. 4, he may be a bit underrated and he’s putting some heat on the big guys -   and   - that are ranked ahead of him.
As for Anthony’s recruitment, that’s a tough call because he doesn’t really talk about it or go into specifics those times he does. So, I can only go by what I’ve heard and what I see with my own eyes in terms of head coaches paying attention. 
I expect DukeKansasLouisvilleNorth CarolinaNotre DameOregonVillanovaWake Forest and perhaps some others like Pittsburgh or Georgetown to be among those he considers when it comes time to cut things down. When it comes to that cut, I don’t see anything happening all that soon and I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see Anthony be a player whose recruitment goes into the spring of 2019.  
Ru0s5hno1fajdtamzwel
Jay Wright
AP Images
Great question. Obviously, former five-star recruit 
 staying in the NBA Draft after playing just one year at Villanova would be a big blow. But Nova fans should be good with it since he won a title during his year on the floor.
I supposed that Jay Wright and his staff could look around to find a late replacement, but the fact is there just aren’t many players left that would be able to help a team as good as Villanova. The focus would be on developing 
, having   play at the five and hoping   is ready to give some meaningful minutes. Though he’s not a banger, inbound   will help to add some size and he can certainly stretch the floor with his shooting. They’ve got   insurance in Albany transfer  , so no matter what, Wright's team will be more than okay.
Qdhb2wx3jai70hpyu4ma
Michael Foster
This is something we won’t begin to discuss internally until at least after this summer, but you are correct because based on what I’ve seen, Arizona State commit 
 would have the early inside track on the No. 1 ranking in 2021. But, it’s far from a done deal and there’s a good chance we haven’t even seen the player who would end up No. 1 by late August when we release our initial rankings for the class.
However, a few names that jump out to me as players who could be in the discussion are smooth New England wing 
, who has been very impressive playing in the 17U division of Nike’s EYBL for Expressions Elite.   is a big and skilled wing who like Foster plays his high school ball in Milwaukee, he’s probably in the conversation.   a high energy big man from New York could be in the discussion. 

Of the players from 2021 that I’ve seen, those would be the guys that are in my mind but our staff will be seeing a lot more guys over the next few months, so take that list with a big grain of salt. 
Izms0nqt2mqze8ht0iof
Trayce Jackson-Davis
Jordan Wells/TheHoosier.com
I actually thought that 
 was on the verge of committing – to Indiana – back during the beginning of the winter after multiple visits to Bloomington. The Hoosiers are still the best bet to land the five-star big man, but as far as I can tell he is in no real rush to make a decision.
My feel at this point is that Jackson-Davis wouldn’t surprise anybody if he made a June commitment, but I don’t anticipate that he would do so without taking at least a few more unofficial visits. If he doesn’t set any of those soon with places like IowaMichigan State, Notre Dame, Ohio State or UCLA among others, then it could go into the late summer or early fall. The bottom line here is that I still see Indiana as the team to beat, regardless of a when a decision goes down.

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Villanova adds four-star Justin Moore

Reprint from Rivals.com's Eric Bossi

Villanova, already holding the commitment of four-star junior Eric Dixon, added to its promising 2019 class with the pledge of Rivals150 guard  Justin Moore. A four-star junior that is known for his shot making and toughness in the backcourt, Moore’s commitment is another win for the defending national champions.
The Wildcats made Moore a priority for the past two years. Coach Jay Wright was at nearly each of his games during the two live periods this spring, and Moore was more than ready to call it a day with things.
“It is just a great program with a great group of coaches and players who win,” he told Rivals.com. “They said they are losing most of their guards by the time that I come in so I could pretty much have a chance to start and be the man.”  
The second commitment in the 2019 class for Villanova, Moore and Dixon are a tremendous start to what could be a top-10 recruiting class in Philadelphia. The Wildcats remain in a great spot with Scottie Lewis, a five-star wing, along with Isaiah WongIsaiah StewartBryan Antoine, and Aidan Igiehon.
MORE VILLANOVANovaIllustrated.com

Friday, April 27, 2018

Rival Views: What changes would you make to AAU basketball?

Reprint from Eric Bossi and Corey Evans
Rivals.com















On Wednesday, the Commission on College Basketball issued its much anticipated report and suggestions for change. There were some good ideas and there were some bad ideas. Included in the report was some discussion of changing "non scholastic" aka grassroots or AAU basketball.

With that in mind, Rivals.com national basketball analysts Eric Bossi and Corey Evans discuss changes they would make and as usual they have Rival Views.

MORE: Five takeaways from the Commission on College Basketball report

BOSSI'S VIEW: MOVE A JULY LIVE PERIOD TO JUNE
Each college program has a total of 130 days that it can use toward evaluating prospects. That can be going to a practice, a game or attending one of the "live" weekends in April when coaches can watch grassroots tournaments around the country. However, during July's three live evaluation periods, there are no such restrictions.

I'm not sure that there is a good way to limit the number of days that a staff can be out during July, so I don't think opening up the entire month and essentially saying "go for it" - with a limited number of days available - is the plan, so instead I would focus on switching up those live periods.

One of the biggest complaints about summer ball and the importance of it is that it has lessened the role of high school coaches in recruiting. So, I would take one of the three July live periods and move it to the latter part of June. For that June period, I would require that in order for coaches to watch a player they have to either be practicing with or playing in an event with their high school team.

It doesn't take away days from coaches to scout, it theoretically gives some influence back to the high school coaches that people seem to feel are so clean in all of this and we'd find out real quick if state organizations and high school coaches are willing to be part of the solution.

Meanwhile, shoe companies and independent event operators would still be able to run their events, charge coaches for packets and potentially turn themselves a nice profit while kids get exposure to college coaches.

EVANS' VIEW: OVERSIGHT FROM A GOVERNING BODY
For all of the criticism that Condoleezza Rice and the Commission on College Basketball directed toward grassroots basketball, most involved - outside of the former coaches - have likely never set foot into a gym on a hot July afternoon. That's important to note.

True, there are some issues pertaining to spring and summer basketball. Yes, as in almost every realm, there are some people involved in travel basketball that are not in it for the right reasons. But let's be clear here: The grassroots industry is not broken. For all of its supposed faults, it is also the reason why high school prospects across the country are able to secure college scholarship offers that they would have had a hard time securing were it not for the exposure of travel basketball.

Reworking the travel period schedules is a start, but we could go further. The sport would also benefit from some sort of governing body that is more hands-on with the ground floor of the industry.

USA Basketball has been suggested as a potential "official" governing body for future events, although they already certify the coaches and run background checks. That would be a start but don’t forget that Nike sponsors USA Basketball. Sure, you could push Nike, Under Armour and adidas away but is the NCAA willing to say goodbye to all of the money that the shoe companies are investing into the sport? It’s put up or shut up time.

Monday, April 16, 2018

The Warmup: Bossi's Takeaways

Vzxqyyzilxsljf1case6
Keon Johnson
SPRINGDALE, Ark. – Things get real on the grassroots basketball circuit at the end of this week when travel teams can play in front of college coaches. In preparation for that, teams hit Made Hoops "The Warmup" over the weekend. The rise of 2020 shooting guard 
 was among National Basketball Analyst Eric Bossi's major takeaways.
RIVALS.COM RANKINGS WEEKBossi's preview

2020 GUARD KEON JOHNSON SHOULD TAKE OFF THIS SPRING

 69 
NATIONAL
   
STATE
   
POSITION
6'5" 160 LBS SG
WEBB
BELL BUCKLE, TN
CLASS OF 2020
UNDECIDED
It isn't as if sophomore shooting guard 
 showed up at The Warmup as a complete unknown. A four-star prospect from Bell Buckle (Tenn.) Webb, Johnson already ranks No. 69 nationally in the class of 2020.
After seeing him play with his Nashville-based club team EAB, I think Johnson could rise even higher than that.
Johnson is a primetime athlete, has terrific vision as a passer and can score off the dribble and make plays in transition. The SEC is all over Johnson as AuburnOle Miss and Tennessee have offered. Kermit Davis had offered at Middle Tennessee State before taking the Ole Miss job. Vanderbilt is also paying close attention.
So far, Johnson says that he's been on the campuses of Tennessee and Vanderbilt. He is open to new interest and showing high-major programs his potential.
"I've been working on my shooting," Johnson told Rivals.com. "I'm becoming more of a threat from three and off the dribble."

MOSES MOODY LOOKS COMFORTABLE WITH NEW TEAM

 32 
NATIONAL
   
STATE
   
POSITION
RANK
N/A
6'5" 177 LBS SG
NORTH LITTLE ROCK
LITTLE ROCK, AR
CLASS OF 2020
UNDECIDED
Not just one of the top prospects in the Southeast, four-star shooting guard 
 is one of the top 2020 wing prospects in the country.
Ranking No. 32 overall in the sophomore class, the 6-foot-5 scorer has joined with Bradley Beal Elite and will play up a year on the 17U level of Nike's EYBL.
Moody is a pure scorer who can get buckets at the rim, from mid range and from deep. 
Heading into the live periods he's holding an impressive group of offers that includes ArkansasOklahomaOklahoma StateBaylor and Florida State. With Duke and Villanova expressing interest, Moody could become a national priority over the next few weeks.

HARRIS SHOULD EMERGE AS A 2019 POINT GUARD TARGET

   
NATIONAL
   
STATE
   
POSITION
6'1" 160 LBS PG
ROCK BRIDGE
COLUMBIA, MO
CLASS OF 2019
UNDECIDED
An unranked three-star prospect in the class of 2019, point guard 
 of Columbia (Mo.) Rock Bridge and Kansas City-based MoKan Elite should see his stock take off this month.
Harris holds an offer from Tulsa and has had interest from Missouri and Nebraska. So, he's gotten some looks but things haven't really taken off yet. I'm expecting that to change in the next few weeks.
There are a couple of important things going for Harris that should allow this to happen. Most importantly, the 6-foot-1 floor general can play. He's tough, quick, communicates with his teammates and makes things happen on both ends of the floor. Also in his favor is that he plays for a team that will draw a crowd because of a loaded roster that is highlighted by a potential top three player in the class of 2020 in big man 
.

2019 BIG MAN JACOB GERMANY IS ONE TO WATCH

   
NATIONAL
   
STATE
   
POSITION
6'9" 210 LBS C
KINGSTON
KINGSTON, OK
CLASS OF 2019
UNDECIDED
The best part about events like The Warmup is I always seem to find a guy that hasn't received much media attention who looks ready to emerge as a prospect that people will want to know more about. Coming out of my trip to Arkansas, I feel like Kingston (Okla.) High junior 
, who plays his travel ball for Team Griffin, could be that guy.
Germany currently holds offers from Mercer and TCU to go with interest from OklahomaOklahoma StateTulsa and Kansas State. Germany is a southpaw with a nice frame to build on, has touch as a jump shooter and is a good athlete around the rim. Those attributes should result in more scholarship offers and more college interest sooner than later.

MORE NOTES FROM THE WARMUP

 74 
NATIONAL
   
STATE
   
POSITION
6'1" 165 LBS PG
VASHON
ST. LOUIS, MO
CLASS OF 2019
UNDECIDED
Bradley Beal Elite's 17U team has an interesting 2019 backcourt in four-star combo guard 
 and three-star point guard  . McKinney is a high flying, hard playing and in your face athlete who looks like he would be a natural at a program that loves to run and pressure -- even at the risk of making some gambles -- defensively. He's high octane all the way. Collins on the other hand is more deliberate and more of a feel and skill guy. Their opposing styles along with the smooth scoring of the previously mentioned Moses Moody make them a fun backcourt trio to watch.
*****
The next few weeks are going to be huge for 6-foot-10 center 
 from Kansas City (Mo.) Park Hill and MoKan Elite. Wilson can really run, blocks shots well above the rim and shows some offensive promise. He has the talent to be a member of the 2019 Rivals150 and a fairly highly ranked one at that. If he can show some consistency over the next few weeks, he's got a chance to lock in a place in the rankings and start reeling in high-major offers.
*****
Only a freshman, 6-foot-8 power forward 
 of the Houston Hoops 15U team and San Antonio (Texas) Antonian was one of the better-looking young post players I was able to watch. He's already pretty fluid, has some touch and plays with a good motors. Guys his size at that age with his current skill set tend to get recruited heavily.
*****
Over the weekend, slender scorer 
 from Rayville (La.) and Woodz Elite picked up his first high-major offer from Iowa State. Currently ranked No. 118 in the 2019 Rivals150, Wilson can fill it up from deep or off of the dribble and I doubt that the Iowa State offer will be his last before the end of his junior year.