LSU Tigers: Jordan Mickey

Several ESPN 100 recruits to play in NHSI

March, 12, 2013
The field is set for the fifth annual National High School Invitational, and it promises to be the most talented group in the event’s history.

All eight teams in the NHSI field are ranked in the ESPN 25 Power Rankings, and six are in the top 10. The tournament will be held April 4-6 in Bethesda, Md., and televised on ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU. Seedings and matchups will be announced at a later date.

[+] EnlargeNigel Williams-Goss
Josh Holmberg/Icon SMIWashington recruit Nigel Williams-Goss and Findlay Prep look to defend their NHSI title.
This year’s NHSI is headlined by the No. 1 team in the nation, Findlay Prep (Nev.). The undefeated Pilots are the reigning NHSI champs and boast a loaded roster that features a quartet of ESPN 100 stars in Nigel Williams-Goss (Washington, No. 20), Allerik Freeman (UCLA, No. 65), Christian Wood (UNLV, No. 74) and Stanford Robinson (Indiana, No. 98).

“It’s going to be difficult [to repeat],” said Findlay head coach Todd Simon. "This appears to be the strongest field yet for the NHSI. The fact that we are 34-0 and have won NHSI three times it makes us a gigantic target. But it’s a nice little challenge.”

Top-15 recruits Kasey Hill (Florida, No. 9) and Dakari Johnson (Kentucky, No. 11) lead No. 2 Montverde Academy (Fla.). The Eagles are still smarting after consecutive losses to Findlay, first in last year’s NHSI title game and again in January on a Williams-Goss buzzer-beater that ended Montverde’s reign at No. 1.

Also in the mix for the coveted NHSI crown are: No. 4 Prime Prep (Texas), led by No. 53 senior Jordan Mickey (LSU) and No. 3 junior Emmanuel Mudiay (undecided); No. 5 St. Benedict’s Prep (N.J.) and ESPN 100 point guard Tyler Ennis (Syracuse); No. 8 La Lumiere (Ind.) with talented wing Detrick Mostella (Oklahoma State) leading the way; No. 9 Blanche Ely (Fla.), the Florida Class 7A state champ; and perennial top-25 squads No. 19 Oak Hill Academy (Va.) and No. 25 Montrose Christian (Md.).

“To win this event we’d be 37-0, and with the schedule we’ve played it would put us in rare air in high school basketball,” Simon added.

LSU signs three ESPN 100 hoop stars 

November, 15, 2012
BATON ROUGE, La. -- On the court, Johnny Jones hasn't seen his first big test yet.

In recruiting, however, the first-year LSU coach won big on Wednesday.

LSU received national letters of intent from three ESPN 100 players: forwards Jarrell Martin and Jordan Mickey and guard Tim Quarterman. LSU also announced the signing of John Odo, a center from Hill College in Texas, to an SEC Aid Agreement. Odo will enroll at LSU in January and because of that, does not sign a NLI.

No. 15 Martin highlights LSU class 

November, 15, 2012
Five-star prospect Jarrell Martin (Baton Rouge, La./Madison Prep), No. 15 in the ESPN 100, signed his official letter of intent for LSU on Wednesday.

"Jarell Martin is an exceptional talent who has the ability to play both outside and inside," first-year coach Johnny Jones said. "With his ball-handling, passing and ability to score, he will be able to create opportunities for other players on his team. He could be a difficult matchup for our opponent."

Martin is part of a class ranked No. 7 according to ESPN's RecruitingNation. Also signing with the Tigers were ESPN 100 recruits Jordan Mickey (Arlington, Texas/Prime Prep) and Tim Quarterman (Savannah, Ga./Johnson). LSU also signed John Odo (Nigeria/Hill College) to an SEC Aid Agreement. Odo is scheduled to enroll in January.

"This class consists of four young men of exceptional talent that will allow us to continue to compete in the highest level in the near future," Jones said. "The versatility of this class is what we were looking for from the beginning. We are excited about the future of LSU Basketball."

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LSU gets even more versatile with Martin 

November, 1, 2012
First-year LSU coach Johnny Jones didn't have to travel far to land his third commitment from the ESPN 100. Local power forward Jarrell Martin (Baton Rouge, La./Madison Prep), Louisiana’s top-ranked player and the No. 14 prospect in the nation, said yes to the Tigers, eschewing offers from Oklahoma State, Texas A&M, Alabama and St. John's. Martin joins power forward Jordan Mickey (Arlington, Texas/Prime Prep Academy) and point guard Tim Quarterman (Savannah, Ga./Johnson) as Top 100 players on the Tigers. Add in Australian post Deng Deng, and Jones has put together a terrific incoming class oozing with talent.

[+] EnlargeJarrell Martin
Courtesy of Scott KurtzLSU signee Jarrell Martin is having a monster senior season.
The best word to describe this class is versatile. And that's significant as the Tigers will have to duke it out with the top-five recruiting classes rivals Kentucky (No. 1) and Florida (No. 3) have heading to the SEC.

Jones implores his teams to play fast and get out on the break to score as many easy baskets as possible. In the half court, Jones will spread the floor and attack with an inside-out approach. With his length and skill, Martin should fit that offense very nicely. The 6-foot-7 post is also capable of defending both forward positions in various schemes, including switching situations and traps.

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BATON ROUGE, La. -- How big is it for LSU to land Jarrell Martin, the No. 14-ranked player in the ESPN 100?

Martin, who committed to the Tigers on Thursday in an assembly at Madison Prep Academy, is the most coveted recruit to commit to the Tigers since Glen "Big Baby" Davis, who was ranked as the nation's No. 13 player when he pledged in 2004. If LSU coach Johnny Jones was hired to improve recruiting, Martin's pledge is proof that he's delivering.

Jarell Martin
David Helman/ESPN.comNo. 14 hoop prospect Jarrell Martin, decked out in an LSU hat, committed to the Tigers on Thursday.
That makes Martin the the most coveted player to commit to LSU since Davis who, like Martin, prepped at a local high school, as Davis attended University Lab.

Martin should provide Jones with plenty of the firepower he wants in implementing an up-tempo, fast-break offense at LSU.

At 6-foot-7, Martin projects as a power forward, but he said he hopes to move inside and out, depending on how he's matched up -- and Jeff Jones, Martin's coach at Madison Prep, agreed with his star player's assessment, comparing him to North Texas standout and former Johnny Jones pupil Tony Mitchell.

"Really what will help Johnny with his system are the guys he'll have in John Udoh and Deng Deng and [Jordan] Mickey and [Tim] Quarterman," Jeff Jones said. "... There will be a lot of places to move Jarrell around. And whatever you ask Jarrell to do, he's going to do it."

Martin sees his versatility as being similar to a particular player who never even considered attending North Texas.

"I'd say I see my game like LeBron James -- I just take whatever is there," Martin said. "If a big guy is on me I'll go out and use my perimeter game, if a small guy is on me I'll go down low."

In light of that versatility and willingness, the presence of other big men among LSU commits could be a boon for Martin offensively.

Add in LSU's previous commitment from forward Jordan Mickey, the No. 46 player in the ESPN 100, and LSU has two Top 50 players in the same class for the first time since 2005 when Mitchell and Magnum Rolle both signed with the Tigers as top 50 recruits on LSU also has a pledge from Tim Quarterman, the No. 66 player on the Rivals 100 and junior college forward Deng Deng. John Odoh, a junior college center, will join the team in January.

Better than that, Jones' new batch of recruits already have some experience playing with each other.

"I actually played against Tim Quarterman and Jordan Mickey," Martin said. "Me and Jordan Mickey used to be together at the camps, and he was one of the guys that we'd be together at the camps and become close friends."

But it's Martin who stands out among the trio of prospects. LSU has had other top players since Davis, but stars such as Tasmin Mitchell (No. 20, Rivals) in 2005, J'Mison Morgan (No. 26, ESPN), Aaron Dotson (No. 45, ESPN) in 2009 and Johnny O'Bryant (No. 46, ESPN) in 2011 were all highly regarded recruits, but not as much as Martin.

It should also be noted that Morgan signed with LSU when John Brady was still head coach and was let out of his letter of intent by Trent Johnson, eventually winding up at at UCLA before transferring to Baylor.

Big recruiting week for LSU's Jones

September, 30, 2012
BATON ROUGE, La. -- When Johnny Jones was hired as LSU's basketball coach in the spring, he came with the reputation of being a top-notch recruiter.

Evidence of that has been pouring in this week.

Just two days after the Tigers landed a commitment from ESPN 100 forward Jordan Mickey, Jones added a second ESPN 100 commitment Sunday when point guard Tim Quarterman (Savannah, Ga./Johnson) pledged to sign with the Tigers. They are the first two ESPN 100 commitments Jones has landed for the Tigers since he arrived on campus to replace Trent Johnson, who left LSU for TCU.

It's huge for LSU, a program that hasn't been to an NCAA tournament since winning the SEC in 2009 and hasn't consistently been able to land top-tier talent. In Jones' short tenure, all of his recruits before this week -- point guard Corban Collins and wings Shane Hammink and Shavon Coleman in the 2012 class and junior college big men John Odoh and Deng Deng as early commitments in the 2013 class -- were relatively unknown, sleeper-type recruits.

What this week proves is LSU won't necessarily have to rely on the under-the-radar guy -- Jones can contend for top talent.

The addition of Quarterman also further clarifies the picture of what kind of team Jones wants to have. In Coleman and Hammink, Jones signed a pair of long, 6-foot-6 wings and Deng and Mickey are both versatile, athletic, 6-8 players. With big point guards like the 6-foot-5 Quarterman and the 6-3 Collins, LSU's future lineups appear to be ones of across-the-board athleticism and length.

A lineup with Quarterman at the point, Deng and Mickey inside and Coleman and Hammink on the wings would be all players 6-5 and taller, but not taller than 6-8, with the interchangeable ability to switch on screens and get in passing lanes with long arms and athleticism on defense and run with explosiveness and skill on the fast break on offense.

With four commitments already, LSU has one more scholarship to give in the class.

And there is at least one more ESPN 100 player who shares a mutually strong interest with LSU, 6-foot-7 forward Jarrell Martin, a local talent from just a few miles north of LSU's campus in Baton Rouge. If Jones can add Martin -- another versatile, athletic forward -- it would further establish the identity of Jones' Tigers teams going forward.

And it would also further establish LSU, under Jones, as a legitimate player in the national recruiting scene.

LSU adds biggest in a 'big'-heavy class 

September, 28, 2012
Remember the summer when new coach Johnny Jones struggled mightily to find big men for LSU?

Seems like a long time ago now.

Jordan Mickey, a 6-foot-8 forward from Arlington, Texas, announced Thursday that he was the third commitment for LSU's 2013 class, all big men. Mickey, the No. 45 player in the ESPN 100, joined junior college transfers John Odoh, a 6-10 shot-blocker, and Deng Deng, a versatile, 6-8 Australian, in the class.

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LSU lands Texas big Mickey 

September, 27, 2012
LSU head coach Johnny Jones has his first big-time commitment after power forward Jordan Mickey (Dallas, Texas/Prime Prep) committed to the Tigers over offers from SMU, Oklahoma State and Ohio State.

Mickey, the No. 45 player in the ESPN 100, learned about Jones during the coach’s time at North Texas.

[+] EnlargeJordan Mickey
Courtey of Reggie RankinESPN 100 PF Jordan Mickey committed to LSU.
"The fact that he brought a down in the dumps UNT program to a winning [team] in the last five years, that says a lot about him," Mickey said.

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LSU hosts three top 100 players 

May, 29, 2012
LSU coach Johnny Jones isn't done recruiting for the class of 2012, but that doesn't mean he and is staff aren't already working on the 2013 class.

LSU hosted three players ranked in the 2013 ESPN 100 during the weekend when members of the stacked Dallas-based Urban DFW Elite grass roots team made an unofficial visit to LSU on Memorial Day. Center Karviar Shepherd (Dallas/Grace Prep), the No. 29 player in the 2013 100, forward Jordan Mickey (Dallas/Grace Prep) the No. 41-ranked player, and guard Kendal Harris (Richardson, Texas/Berkner), the No. 93-ranked player, were among the players who made the visit.

Also notably present was guard Shirmane Thomas (Dallas/Skyline).

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Marcus Spears reviews LSU Pro Day
Paul Finebaum and ESPN's Marcus Spears discuss LSU Pro Day and players that stood out.