Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Taylor can play both back-court positions

GRANDVIEW, Mo. -- As one of the top available players in the Midwest, things are going pretty well for Tyrone Taylor. The three-star guard has been playing with a relaxed confidence and eclipsed a current NBA player's school record. Soon, he'll get more serious about picking a spot to play his college ball.

Tyrone Taylor broke Alex Burks' scoring record at Grandview High.
Initially, Taylor had hoped to sign in the fall. However, the 6-foot-2 combo guard at Grandview (Mo.) High in the Kansas City area decided to wait until spring. After putting early pressure on himself, the southpaw has relaxed and his game has blossomed.

"I'm glad that things have kind of slowed down a little bit so I can focus on my season," Taylor told "I was really stressed out at the beginning of the season. If you were here you would have seen it because I was so worried about playing well. Since I've relaxed, my game has gone to the next level."

While leading his team to an undefeated conference record, Taylor has also set Grandview's all-time scoring record. The record was previously held by current Utah Jazz shooting guard Alec Burks who keeps in touch with the new record holder.

"I actually texted him last weekend and was talking stuff to him," Taylor said. "It just shows that I have talent and hopefully I can be just as good as him.

"He always says to believe in yourself because just like it did for him, it can happen."

Long, quick and capable of getting into the paint and setting up himself or others for shots, Taylor has become much more steady as an outside jump shooter. He's also used his ability to move his feet and long arms to turn a previous deficiency into a strength.

"I've improved my defense," said Taylor. "I feel like I struggled early in high school with my defense and I feel like I've picked it up a whole lot.

"I am what I am. I'm more of a combo guard. I think what makes me special is the things that I can do at the point guard and then also being able to play as a shooting guard."

So far, college interest for Taylor has been all over the board between mid- and high-major programs. Among those who have been in contact or in to see him recently are Kansas State, Texas Tech, Missouri, Vanderbilt, Florida International, Western Illinois and Eastern Illinois.

For now, Taylor is focusing on ending his high school career on a high note. His team needs one more win to finish its conference record undefeated and after that, it is looking to make a run in Missouri's class 4A playoffs. When it comes time to decide on a school, though, he has pretty simple criteria.

"Like I tell coaches when they ask, I obviously want to go a winning program. My teammates in high school, we are like a family. So i want to go to a program that is more of a family than a team and somewhere that I can develop my game and take it to the next level."

Friday, February 21, 2014

Current Top Ten players in 2014 Class

Chicago, ILWhitney Young
5 stars
Dallas, TXPrime Prep Academy
5 stars
Santa Ana, CAMater Dei
5 stars
Chicago, ILCurie
5 stars
Apple Valley, MNApple Valley
5 stars
Euless, TXTrinity
5 stars
Henderson, NVFindlay Prep
5 stars
Indianapolis, INArsenal Technical
5 stars
Houston, TXSt. Johns
5 stars
Houston, TXHCYA
5 stars

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Florida guard could be sleeper

Talk about it in Basketball Recruiting Board
Coaches across country are searching for sleepers to sign in the spring of 2014. Dinero Mercurius may be one.

A 6-foot-4 combo guard at Brandon (Fla.) Faith Baptist Christian School, Mercurius has been playing some as a point guard. His ability to play on and off the ball landed him his first high major offer when Stan Heath offered him a scholarship to play at USF.

"It felt good to get the offer," Mercurius told "I knew Coach Heath would be at our game and I didn't want to blow that opportunity.Coach Heath likes that I can shoot the ball and that I'm a combo guard."

A native of New York, Mercurius also holds offers from UT-Martin and Southern to go along with interest from Niagara, Florida A&M, The Citadel, Florida International, Georgia Southern and East Tennessee State.

"His move from the shooting guard to the point has been the biggest reason for his success," said Faith Baptist head coach Kenny Gillion. "It improved his offensive awareness in that he sees the floor better and he improved his ball handling so that he is not just a catch and shoot player."

With Mercurius averaging 17 points and six assists in his prep season at Faith Baptist it's not difficult to see why there was a sudden rush of interest in the local talent from USF staff.

"Coach Roc (South Florida assistant coach Steve Roccaforte) and I have definitely been keeping in contact for a while," said Mercurius. "He'll check to see how I'm doing and get to know me, just building a relationship."

The combo guard recently took an unofficial visit to USF for their game against Rutgers.

"Going to the game opened my eyes a bit," he said. "We went around campus and after the game the coaches talked to me about how I can come in next season and contribute. They've made a really good impression which means a lot. I feel very confident in them."

Mercurius would like to get his commitment out of the way soon but indicated that he would like to see and learn more of what South Florida has to offer educationally before making that decision.

"I don't really have a set timetable for a decision," said Mercurius. "(USF) and I talked about going on a visit next Friday and Saturday. Most likely my mom will be with me. When it comes time to make a college choice I'll talk to my mom and my coaches and listen to their opinions.

"I want to go somewhere that even without basketball I can succeed with my major in in my career. I'm looking for a school that really wants me and fits my playing style."

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Top150 - What if they chose football?

Rivals150: What if they'd chosen football?

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MORE: National Signing Day updates
Easily one of the most anticipated days for college sports fans, football's National Signing Day is always full of entertainment. Each year, we take a look at the Rivals150 and wonder: What if some of the best basketball players chose the football route? Is it a stretch to think that the nation's top point guard Emmanuel Mudiay could have been a highly ranked quarterback? Here's a look at Mudiay and some others from the class of 2014 we could see being successful on the gridiron.
(Note: In the interest of fairness, we will exclude Rivals150 members such as Reid Travis, Jae'Sean Tate, Wade Baldwin, Tadric Jackson and Michael Humphrey who were actually being recruited as football players at one point.)

Emmanuel Mudiay may have been a very good quarterback.
No. 2 Emmanuel Mudiay
School: Dallas (Texas) Prime Prep, SMU
The Buzz: One of the most gifted athletes in the class of 2014, the near 6-foot-5 point guard has all the tools to be a high-end quarterback. He is patient, elusive, has great vision, anticipates plays and likely has a strong arm. His athleticism would make him very dangerous outside of the pocket.
No. 3 Stanley Johnson
School: Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei, Arizona
The Buzz: Because of his size and ability to tussle with bigger players, Johnson would be a natural at tight end. He has pretty good top-end speed, great hands and he could easily add another 20-25 pounds to his already strong 220-pound frame.
No. 4 Cliff Alexander
School: Chicago (Ill.) Curie, Kansas
The Buzz: Probably the single most physical player in the class of 2014, Alexander is a little tall for a football player, but he has the tools and mindset. We would love to see him lined up as an edge rusher. Strong hands, explosive first step and a relentless motor would make him a great pass rusher.
No. 14 Isaiah Whitehead
School: Brooklyn (N.Y.) Lincoln, Seton Hall
The Buzz: A sleek 6-foot-4 athlete with toughness and burst, Whitehead would be a terrific wide receiver prospect. He has very good hands, changes directions well and would win a lot of hand fighting battles with defensive backs. Obviously, his size would be a plus.
No. 19 Theo Pinson
School: High Point (N.C.) Wesleyan Christian, North Carolina
The Buzz: The future Tar Heel would be really intriguing as a wide receiver. At 6-foot-6 he is a long strider with great top end speed, plus hands, and he is a competitor despite his lean frame. He is athletic in traffic and has great body control while taking a hit.
No. 43 Jordan McLaughlin
School: Etiwanda (Calif.) High, USC
The Buzz: The tools to develop into a shutdown corner are all there for the future Trojan. He has great hips, good length, strong hands, stops and starts with ease and is a bouncy athlete. He's a little on the skinny side, but has a body that could easily bulk up to 190 pounds without losing any athleticism.
No. 50 Abdul-Malik Abu
School: Meriden (N.H.) Kimball Union, N.C. State
The Buzz: Abu is a chiseled power forward with long arms, strong hands and a motor that runs high. All of those attributes make him an ideal defensive end. Could see him terrorizing quarterbacks rushing off the edge or defending passes when he drops back during zone blitzes.

Lourawls Nairn would likely be the unquestioned No.1 hoops-to-football prospect
No. 61 Lourawls Nairn
School: Bel Aire (Kan.) Sunrise Christian, Michigan State
The Buzz: If we had to rank these guys in order, Nairn would likely be the unquestioned No.1 hoops-to-football prospect. He is hands down the fastest player in the class of 2014, and the 5-foot-10 point guard is powerfully built. He could play tailback, return kicks and be spread out as a receiver.
No. 63 Jared Terrell
School: Wolfeboro (N.H.) Brewster Prep, Oklahoma State
The Buzz: Terrell actually looks like he could play college football right now. The 6-foot-3 shooting guard is a physically gifted 225-pounder who looks like he would be a fierce hitter as either a jumbo strong safety or a ball hawking outside linebacker.
No. 111 Larry Austin
School: Springfield (Ill.) Lanphier, Tennessee
The Buzz: One of the better perimeter defenders in the class of 2014, Austin moves his feet well and has great anticipation on the defensive end. We could see him covering a lot of ground and being a problem as a free safety or nickel cornerback. Tennessee's class is actually loaded with guys who could be very good football players. Both Phil Cofer (No. 117, DE/TE) and C.J. Turman (NR, O-line) have physical traits that make it easy to envision them as football players.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

3rd Grade Nationals @ Disney 2013 - E1T1 Nike Travel Program

Here comes AAU season!  While school ball is wrapping up, the highest level national AAU teams are preparing for their season!  Each One Teach One is on the video above.  North Metro Elite gets ready for their 2014 season in the next month or so!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

8th Grader Chase Adams dominates John Lucas Camp!

Chase Adams basketball highlights mix-tape from 2013 John Lucas Camp Right Way held at Attack Athletics in September 2013. Chicago 8th grade point guard Chase Adams (Ariel Community Academy) measures about 5 feet in height but had no problem controlling the tempo playing against the best 8th graders in the Midwest.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Wolfpack advance to "Elite Eight"

Living up to their year-long top ten ranking, the North Paulding Wolfpack Boys 7th grade squad advanced to the CCJBC Atlanta Middle School ELITE EIGHT!  The Pack were led by Luke Dabbelt and a host of others in rolling over Kell High School 51-39.

The Pack will face McEachern on Thursday, 2/13/14, at the Cobb Civic Center.  Other teams to advance include 2nd Ranked Pope and 5th ranked Hillgrove! 

5-Star Shooting Guard to announce this weekend

The recruitment of five-star prospect Rashad Vaughn will come to an end in the near future.

Rashad Vaughn will decide this weekend.
The 6-foot-5 shooting guard at Findlay (Nev.) Prep tweeted on Tuesday that he plans to announce his college decision this weekend.

News that he would announce this weekend -- likely Saturday -- was also confirmed to by Findlay assistant Pete Kaffey.

That the No. 7 prospect in the class of 2014 has decided to go ahead and make a decision doesn't really come as a surprise. When spoke to Vaughn in January at the Hoophall Classic he indicated that the process was wearing on him and that he would likely decide before the end of February.

Now the question is, where does Vaughn end up? Officially, Vaughn is down to Iowa State, Kansas, Kentucky, North Carolina and UNLV. He has taken official visits to Iowa State and UNLV and was planning to take trips to North Carolina (where he has been unofficially) and Kentucky later in the month but those plans have been scrapped for now.

With only a few days left in his recruitment, all signs look to be pointing to either the Running Rebels or the Cyclones. Both Dave Rice and Fred Hoiberg's programs have immediate playing time available on the wing and both are in need of a scorer. A native of Minneapolis, Vaughn has grown fond of the Las Vegas area and the support of the Rebels program by locals while he's been attending Findlay. Iowa State is close to home, has been recruiting him intensely the longest and features an NBA style offense that appeals to him.

Headed down the stretch Vaughn isn't giving out any hints, but it does look that a choice other than the Rebels or Cyclones would be a surprise.