NCB On The Trail: Obi Romeo

Roundtable: Future Giant Killers 

March, 25, 2014
It was a memorable first four days of the 2014 NCAA tournament, with a combination of dramatic finishes and Cinderella stories.

Archie Miller and Dayton knocked off perennial powerhouses Ohio State and Syracuse en route to a spot in the Sweet 16, while Harvard and North Dakota State scored similar upsets on the first day of the tournament.

Perhaps the most shocking result, though, came on Friday when Mercer coach Bob Hoffman led his No. 14-seeded Bears to a hard-fought win over Mike Krzyzewski and the No. 3-seeded Duke Blue Devils.

While these programs aren’t necessarily regulars on our national recruiting page, their postseason success can be attributed, at least in part, to successful recruiting. With that in mind, we once again turned to our team of experts at RecruitingNation to ask them which programs could emerge as potential “Giant Killers” in future years based on recent recruiting efforts:

#AskCoachB: Best in West Virginia

December, 26, 2013
Want to ask ESPN RecruitingNation national recruiting director Paul Biancardi a question about basketball recruiting? Tweet it to @PaulBiancardi using the hashtag #AskCoachB.

Although superpower Huntington Prep plays in West Virginia, none of its ranked seniors are from the state.

The highest ranked player is three-star power forward Obi Romeo (Lewisburg, W.Va./Greenbrier East) who committed to St. Joseph’s.

The big man plays with an energy and excitement that is contagious. Romeo has only been in the state of West Virginia for a couple of years, arriving from Nigeria. Although he played AAU basketball for the East Coast Fusion, he is still learning the game, and it's conceivable that Saint Joe's could redshirt him to allow him to develop over a five-year period. He has good physical attributes such as size, length, ability to run and make plays at the rim.

Romeo owns an enormous wingspan and uses that length to protect the rim on defense and score in the paint at the rim. What he does best is rebound and block shots while scoring on offensive rebounds and hustle plays. He has shown the coach-ability and work ethic to improve. Romeo had offers from Big South and A10 schools, as well as interest from WVU and Arkansas before committing to Saint Joe's.
Conference realignment has had lasting implications on every major conference in college basketball, but the group that might have been affected more than anyone else were the mid-major schools.

Annual powerhouses like Xavier, Memphis, Butler, Temple and several others have now been elevated to “high-major” conferences, leaving a void for other mid-major programs to establish their recruiting superiority at their own level.

So after grading the ACC, American, Big 12, Big East, Big Ten, Pac 12, and SEC last week, it’s now time to examine the best of the rest. Grading mid-major classes can be subjective, meaning there’s a little bit of a curve in order to account for the fact that recruiting at this level is tougher than ever before given the unprecedented number of competing programs who can now leverage their high-major conference affiliation.

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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. -- 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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