NCB On The Trail: Isaiah Briscoe

Fab 48 recap 

July, 26, 2014
Jul 26
8:30
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The Las Vegas stretch of the last evaluation period is exhausting, to say the least. Watching games for at least 12 hours a day can take its toll on the mind and body. However, there is nothing better to get the juices flowing again when you can arrive at the gym and take in an epic matchup of 2016 prospect Lonzo Ball against the terrific trio of Oregon-bound Kendall Small, San Diego State-bound Jeremy Hemsley and Stephen Thompson Jr. The game was sloppy at times and the defensive intensity was an afterthought, but the game exhibited the talents of these four West Coast talents.

Best Player

[+] EnlargeIsaiah Briscoe
AP Photo/The Augusta Chronicle, Jon-Michael SullivanIsaiah Briscoe showed why he's one of the top point guards in the 2015 class.
Isaiah Briscoe (Union, N.J./Roselle Catholic)
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NORTH AUGUSTA, S.C. -- The Peach Jam continues to be an event college coaches flock to so they can evaluate and recruit talent for their future rosters. This past weekend, many of the biggest stars on the high school circuit competed for the Nike EYBL championship at the Peach Jam, and the New Jersey Playaz walked away champions in the 17-and-under division.

With so much talent and so much on the line, here are my five takeaways from the event.


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Peach Jam Day 4 recap 

July, 20, 2014
Jul 20
2:15
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NORTH AUGUSTA, S.C. -- You won’t find a more competitive grassroots environment than what we saw Saturday during the quarterfinal round of the Nike EYBL Finals at the Peach Jam, as teams were battling to hold on to their seasons. Heading into Sunday's semifinal action, only four teams remained in the 2014 EYBL season.

Here’s a look at some of the most impressive performances from Day 4 on Saturday:


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Five burning questions: Arizona 

June, 20, 2014
Jun 20
11:15
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At this time last week, Arizona had two early verbal commitments in the Class of 2015 and two graduating seniors whose scholarships would need to be filled.

The Wildcats' work seemed to be done early. Except it wasn’t. Not even close.

Last weekend, ESPN 100 guard Tyler Dorsey decommitted from the Wildcats in a move that many had come to expect.

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The ESPN 60 has officially grown into the ESPN 100 for the Class of 2015, and there are plenty of intriguing storylines among the top rising seniors in the country:

[+] EnlargeIvan Rabb
Chris Williams/Icon SMIIvan Rabb maintained his tenuous hold on the No. 1 spot in the 2015 class.
1. Top spot still up for grabs. Ivan Rabb has retained his spot as the top-ranked prospect in the Class of 2015, but make no mistake about it: This remains a very tight race that will continue to play out for the next 12 months. Rabb’s versatility and efficiency during the Elite Youth Basketball League regular season, in addition to his vast physical upside, were enough for him to retain his title. But he has plenty of competition. Ben Simmons has been coming on as strong in recent months as any prospect in the class, as he is now turning potential into production on a much more consistent basis. In a class full of scoring guards, Malik Newman stands out as the most talented of them all, and very likely the best pure scorer in the ESPN 100. Diamond Stone has had an equally dominant spring in the Under Armour Association, playing his way into the top four and asserting his claim as a contender in the race for the No. 1 spot.

2. Oh, Henry. No player has made a more dramatic jump up the rankings than Henry Ellenson, who went all the way from No. 47 to No. 5 in the ESPN 100. Ellenson averaged 18 points and 9 rebounds per game for Playground Elite during the EYBL season, showing a versatile and unique game for a 6-foot-9 power forward, all while continuing to raise his level of his production with each passing week. He can shoot the ball from the 3-point line but is also a threat to put the ball on the floor. He is perhaps most effective when he’s able to get out and run in transition.

3. Other risers. Ellenson is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to players whose stock is rising. Jaylen Brown had a terrific spring on the adidas Gauntlet circuit and played his way into the top 10. Chase Jeter jumped more than 20 spots to land at No. 13, while Michigan State-bound big man Deyonta Davis moved up 30 spots to No. 18. Other spring stock risers include Justin Simon, who went from 45 to 23; Jalen Adams, 46 to 33; and Jalen Coleman, who hopped 24 spots to land at No. 34 in the ESPN 100.

4. Announcing his arrival. Previously a member of the 2016 class, Caleb Swanigan is making his debut in the 2015 rankings at No. 17 after announcing his reclassification last month. The wide-bodied 6-9 big man has nimble feet for a player of his size and an even bigger presence on the backboards. He led the entire EYBL in rebounding this season and was equally dominant cleaning the glass on both ends. His recruitment has also heated up, with Arizona and Kansas joining a long list of scholarship offers that already included Michigan State, Indiana, Purdue and many others.

5. More notable newcomers. While Swanigan might be the most notable of the new prospects in the ESPN 100, he’s far from the only one. In a class in desperate need of point guards, Corey Sanders has helped to fill a major void. He was unranked in the last ESPN 60 but now makes his ESPN 100 debut ranked No. 31 in the class. Former UConn commit Prince Ali is another prospect who was on the outside looking in the last time we updated rankings, but he has more than proved himself in recent months. Tres Tinkle, Admon Gilder and De'Jounte Murray make their debuts in the top half of the ESPN 100.

[+] EnlargeJessie Govan
Bart Young/USA BasketballGeorgetown commit Jessie Govan is trending back up the ESPN 100.
6. Down but not out. As some prospects go up the rankings, others must go down, but sometimes that’s just the spark of motivation they need to reassert themselves in the coming months. Jessie Govan and Terance Mann are examples of prospects who slipped out of the rankings at one point in time but are now trending back in the right direction. At No. 23, Tyler Dorsey is a prospect who could make another climb up the ESPN 100 before all is said and done, while the same can be said for P.J. Dozier, Charles Matthews, Doral Moore and K.J. Lawson.

7. Big and getting bigger. The 2015 class was already well known for the amount of size and frontcourt depth, but that has become an even bigger (no pun intended) trend in these most recent rankings. In fact, 11 of the top 15 ranked players in the class come at either the center or power forward positions, making this far and away the most frontcourt-dominated class we’ve seen in recent memory.

8. Plenty of positional size. Size is a characteristic of this class, not just among the frontcourt positions, but across each of the five positions on the floor. Even the perimeter players atop the class have terrific size relative to their spot on the floor. Jaylen Brown is no slouch of a wing at 6-5, while Brandon Ingram’s 6-8 frame is ideal. Malachi Richardson has equally imposing size at the shooting guard position at 6-6. Conversely, we don’t see a player 6 feet or under until Kendall Small (ditto on the no pun intended) checks in at No. 60.

9. Scoring guards. While the big men dominate the top of the rankings, many of the best guards in the class all seem to come from a similar prototype. They handle the ball more than natural 2-guards and yet are more focused on their individual offense than pure point guards. Instead, guys such as Newman, Antonio Blakeney, Allonzo Trier and Isaiah Briscoe can be best described as scoring guards -- guards who act as the primary playmakers for their respective teams but look for their own offense first and foremost before passing as a result of forcing the defense to collapse or rotate.

10. On the cusp. The final spots in the ESPN 100 are always some of the most debatable, essentially because there are so many prospects who can make a legitimate claim on the top 100 status. That was particularly true this year, when proven players such as Bryant Crawford and Rex Pflueger were left just on the outside looking in, along with other deserving prospects such as Joseph Toye, Matt Ryan, Chimezie Metu, Marcus Derrickson and several others.
LONG BEACH, Calif. -- Though the overall talent level was diminished in comparison to previous years, this year's Pangos All-American Camp still included several talented prospects, led by McDonald's All American candidates Isaiah Briscoe and Stephen Zimmerman.

Best player


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Isaiah Briscoe is one of the nation’s top prospects in the Class of 2015, ranked ninth in the ESPN 60.

He's a big, strong guard whose DNA is to score, play with pace and change his speed to keep a defender off balance. During the last year or so, he has played more at point guard and is learning how to balance between running a team and scoring to help his team win. So far he has done a good job as his NJ Playaz team is one of the best in the EYBL.

Let’s take an in-depth look at what he brings to the game.


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Minneapolis Nike EYBL recap 

May, 25, 2014
May 25
3:08
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MINNEAPOLIS -- The fourth session of the Nike EYBL gave teams one more opportunity to add league wins and earn the right to participate in the Peach Jam that will crown a champion in July.

Check out some of the many terrific prospect performances we witnessed this weekend at the EYBL:


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EYBL Session III recap 

May, 19, 2014
May 19
10:30
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HAMPTON, Va. -- The third installment of the 2014 Nike EYBL came to the Boo Williams Sports Complex this weekend. Here’s a look at some of the major storylines:


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Best of Dallas Nike EYBL 

May, 12, 2014
May 12
9:01
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FRISCO, Texas -- The second Nike EYBL session is in the books.

Let’s take a look at the event’s best players:

Best inside player

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With Myles Turner's commitment to Texas serving as an unofficial close to the 2014 recruiting class, it’s time to focus on the 2015 crop.

Here are 10 questions that the recruiting world will seek to answer in the next year:

1. Will it be one and done?


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Roundtable: Looking ahead to 2014 

December, 31, 2013
12/31/13
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As we close the door on 2013 and look forward to the year to come, there are a variety of things to look forward to in college basketball recruiting.

The potentially intriguing storylines and trends are perhaps best reflected in our team of Recruiting Nation experts, who seem to have their eyes set on something different heading into the new year.

Paul Biancardi: In the 2014 class, the point guard position is strong at the very top, but there is not a lot of depth or promise after some of the elite players.


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ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. -- For the second consecutive year, the “Live in the A.C.” event offered AAU and grassroots teams an East Coast alternative to the Las Vegas tournaments that have historically served as one of the pillars of the summer evaluation period.

When the balls stopped bouncing on Friday after three days of action, We-R-1 had captured the U17 championship with a win over Expressions Elite, while Team Final Blue held off CIA Bounce in the U16 final.

Here are some of the top performances and notable recruiting news from the event, which included ESPN 100 prospects like Abdul-Malik Abu and Jared Terrell and fast-rising ESPN 60 recruit Derrick Jones.

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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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Best of the LeBron camp Day 3 

July, 9, 2013
7/09/13
12:07
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LAS VEGAS -- The third and final day of the LeBron James Skills Academy wrapped up on Monday with Florida beating Duke, 59-53, in the finals of the playoff bracket. Speedy PG Lourawls Nairn (Bel Aire, Kan./Sunrise Academy), rugged post Angel Delgado (Northfield, Mass./Redemption Academy) and versatile wing Boubacar Moungoro (Bradenton, Fla./IMG Academy) led the way for the winners, while Duke received an outstanding all-around performance from bully ball connoisseur Isaiah Briscoe (Newark, N.J./St. Benedicts).

Here are some superlatives from the final day of the elite skills academy.

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