PHILADELPHIA, Pa. -- There was a major buzz inside the gym of Philadelphia University as the clock struck 5 p.m. and the likes of John Calipari, Rick Pitino, Kevin Ollie, Larry Brown, John Beilein, Bo Ryan, and dozens of other high profile head coaches kicked off the July evaluation period at the Reebok Breakout Camp.

Marquee matchup

The opening game featured a highly anticipated matchup between two of the ESPN 100’s best big men -- Diamond Stone and Skal Labissiere. That wasn’t the only attraction in the game, as Derryck Thornton and Kendall Small went head to head at point guard. Those matchups attracted the attention of the head coaches, who included Boston College’s Jim Christian, Washington’s Lorenzo Romar, Iowa’s Fran McCaffery, Providence’s Ed Cooley, Wake Forest’s Danny Manning, Memphis’ Josh Pastner, and Kansas State’s Bruce Weber. Though neither big man received enough touches to truly stand out, they both showed flashes of their undeniable ability. Thornton got the better of the backcourt matchup, showing his instincts in pick-and-roll action to finish with 10 points, 7 assists, and 5 rebounds in two quarters. Markis McDuffie seized the opportunity to steal the stage, making a series of tough shots to score a game-high 15 points.
With the recent commitment of Daniel Giddens to Ohio State, 33 of the top 100 players in the Class of 2015 already have verbally committed, even though the July evaluation period is just beginning. These prospects sometimes get less media attention because they have already made their decisions, but they are still being constantly evaluated by our staff.

Let’s take a look at five committed prospects from the 2015 class who are performing well and could see jumps in their rankings:


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ESPN 100 center Daniel Giddens committed to Ohio State over finalists Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas and Wake Forest, giving the Buckeyes their fourth four-star recruit.

What does the nation's No. 55 player bring to Thad Matta's crew? Let's break it down:

Why he committed: Post players were a major need for Matta's roster and Giddens, a 6-foot-10 center, will help fill that void in a huge way. He gives the Buckeyes a true low-post presence, especially defensively, and is a rim-rattling finisher with great upside.

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Fab Frosh Camp recap 

July, 3, 2014
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ATLANTA -- Each year, the Clay Dade Fab Frosh Camp gives us our first look at the incoming class of high school freshmen. This year's camp lacked any superstar standouts but showed a balance that could lead to a deep 2018 class moving forward.

Here are five of the better prospects in attendance who are worth keeping an eye on in the future:


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As ESPN.com's countdown of the top college basketball coaches continues, here’s a look at the recruiting philosophy of Kentucky’s John Calipari:


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Billy Donovan's presence on the recruiting trail had never been bigger than immediately after he led Florida to back-to-back national championships in 2006 and 2007.

That 2006 title was followed by four consecutive top-20 recruiting classes, including a 2007 group that was No. 3 in the country and a 2008 class that was No. 2.


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ALAMEDA, Calif. -- The second day of the Under Armour Stephen Curry Select Camp, featuring some of the nation's top wing players, emphasized scoring off a variety of cuts and screens, while also playing half court 4-on-4.

Here are a few players who stood out on Day 2:

On-Court Session III: L-Cut Moves

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Penn State coach Pat Chambers scored a pivotal commitment from the 2015 class on Monday night when ESPN 100 shooting guard Josh Reaves pledged to the Nittany Lions.

How will Reaves fit into Chambers' system and who does he remind us of? Let's break it down:


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With six trips to the Final Four in the last 15 years, there's no denying that the Michigan State Spartans are one of college basketball's national power house programs.

But when it comes to recruiting, Spartans head coach Tom Izzo is very content to take a regional based approach.

"Coach's philosophy has always been to recruit kids within a four hour radius," Michigan State associate head coach Dwayne Stephens said.


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Scout on the road 

July, 1, 2014
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LOS ANGELES -- The past few weeks while elite camps have been dominating the recruiting landscape, there have been a plethora of high school tournaments littered along the Los Angeles landscape. Here are some players who stood out during that time:


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Coach Mike Krzyzewski has been the head coach at Duke since 1980 and has coached dozens and dozens of players who have made an NBA roster. He is a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame and will go down as one of the all-time great coaches in college basketball. There are many factors behind his enormous success, one of which is how well he has recruited over four decades at Duke. He has had some outstanding assistants, but they have come and gone while he remained the face of the program and the reason why prospects still come to Duke.

In college athletics, overall success is a direct correlation of a coach's ability to evaluate, recruit and secure the very best student athletes.

Recruiting Philosophy

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ALAMEDA, Calif. -- The inaugural Under Armour Stephen Curry Select Camp features some of the nation's top perimeter players from the 2015, 2016 and 2017 classes. Attacking off ball screens and shooting off the dribble were the emphasis of the first day.

Here are a few players who caught our attention:


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Rick PitinoJoe Robbins/Getty ImagesRick Pitino focuses on development as well as talent when recruiting players and hiring assistants.
Russ Smith, Luke Hancock and Gorgui Dieng were cornerstones of the Louisville Cardinals' 2013 national championship team and yet none of them were top 100-rated recruits coming out of high school.

Unlike some of the game's other coaching giants, Rick Pitino has never been afraid to go off the path on the recruiting trail. Never the coach to focus exclusively on five-star prospects, Pitino's philosophy has always been of his own making.


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WASHINGTON, D.C. -- The Kevin Durant Nike Skills Academies took place under the direction of former NBA player and coach John Lucas. NBA superstar Kevin Durant was on hand each day participating in scrimmages and giving guidance to the high school and college campers. This camp showed why the SG/SF positions in 2015 are maybe the most talented and deepest positions in the class. Many of these prospects own terrific positional size with some striking wing spans.

Who stood out the most during the event? Let's break it down:

Best at creating separation


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Weekly commitment update

June, 27, 2014
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Here's a list of commitments made to schools from June 20-26.

SEC
Missouri
Tramaine Isabell PG
HT: 6-1 WT: 170
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 3

Pac 12
Washington State
Jeff Pollard PF
HT: 6-8 WT: 220
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

American Athletic Conference
Rutgers
Shaquille Doorson C
HT: 6-11 WT: 265
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: 16
Stars: 4

Atlantic 10
Dayton
Xeyrius Williams PF
HT: 6-8 WT: 205
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

Conference USA
Florida Atlantic
Don Coleman PG
HT: 6-0 WT: 160
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

WAC
New Mexico State
Jose Campo C
HT: 6-10 WT: 190
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 2

Texas-Pan American
Everett Osborne SG
HT: 6-3
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: Junior College

Big Sky Conference
Portland State
Bryce White SF
HT: 6-5
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: Junior College

Northern Colorado
Riak Bol PF
HT: 6-10 WT: 210
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: Junior College

Southern Conference
Samford
Chris Cunningham PG
HT: 5-11 WT: 160
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: 2

America East
Vermont
Everett Duncan SG
HT: 6-6 WT: 165
Class of 2015
Positional Rank: NA
Stars: Evaluation Pending

SWAC
Alabama State
Chidozie Omile SG
HT: 6-5 WT: 215
Class of 2014
Positional Rank: Junior College

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