NCB On The Trail: Hoop Group July camps

NEW YORK, N.Y. -- After a month of nothing but basketball, recruits and college coaches alike tend to be exhausted by the time the final weekend of the July evaluation period rolls around. For event operators, that creates a unique challenge where they have to do a little something different to ensure the quality of their event.

For the Hoop Group’s Buzzer Beater Classic, that little something different this past weekend was Basketball City, a state-of-the-art, seven-court facility sitting on Pier 36 on the East River, just off FDR Drive and literally in the shadow of the Brooklyn Bridge.

The facility, combined with the allure of New York City, created just the type of atmosphere necessary to spark a couple more days of competitive basketball at the end of a long month. Here’s a look at the top storylines that emerged from the Buzzer Beater Classic.

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KING OF PRUSSIA, Pa. -- On the heels of the invitation-only Summer Classic East event, the Hoop Group concluded the second week of the evaluation period with its Summer Jam Fest this past weekend. The Jam Fest welcomed a much larger field of players and presented us with a variety of intriguing storylines and a who’s who list of coaches in attendance to see ESPN 100 stars Goodluck Okonoboh, Kaleb Joseph and Abdul-Malik Abu.

Here’s what caught our eyes in Philly.

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KING OF PRUSSIA, Pa. -- The Hoop Group’s annual Summer Classic East event kicked off the second week of the July evaluation period with a highly selective, invitation-only field of the top teams in the northeast. The loaded event featured a pair of ESPN 100 talents in point guard Kaleb Joseph (No. 51) and Pascal Chukwu (No. 58), No. 38 junior Moustapha Diagne and No. 21 sophomore Kassoum Yakwe, leading to a slew of college head coaches from all levels making sure their presence was noticed.

Here’s how things went down in the Keystone State.

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READING, Pa. -- The Hoop Group opened the July evaluation period in its customary fashion: by hosting one of the biggest exposure basketball camps in the United States with more 800 campers converging on Albright College this week for session II of the Hoop Group Elite Camp.

While the sheer size of the camp attracts coaches from all levels of college basketball, what really differentiates this camp are the players themselves. Although there was a fair share of big names in the field, a consistent theme was the desire for players to prove themselves in front of college coaches. As a result, this turned into an ideal venue to spot under-the-radar and young talent.

Here were the top performers from the Hoop Group Elite Camp, including big-name players, under-the-radar stars and the top underclassmen.

Big-Name Players

Isaiah Whitehead (Brooklyn, N.Y./Lincoln)
2014, SG, 6-4, 195
Offers from Arizona, Kansas, Louisville, St. John’s and Syracuse, among others


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