NCB On The Trail: Thomas Bryant

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NEW YORK -- The Dick's Sporting Goods High School National Tournament crowned a champion on Saturday at Madison Square Garden with a familiar name as Montverde Academy (Fla.) won its second straight title, this time 71-62 over Oak Hill Academy (Va.). Over the six-year history of this prestigious event, this was the deepest field of teams and the highest level of talent from top to bottom. Montverde came in ranked as the No. 1 high school team in the country and should walk away in that top spot when the polls are finalized.

As the final high school team event of the 2013-14 season, let's take a look at five things we learned from this year's tournament:


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#AskCoachB: Who will land Bryant?

February, 21, 2014
Feb 21
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Want to ask ESPN RecruitingNation national recruiting director Paul Biancardi a question about basketball recruiting? Tweet it to @PaulBiancardi using the hashtag #AskCoachB.
Bryant is a big-bodied power forward who is an excellent rebounder because of his mobility, effort and secure hands. What really makes this junior such a talent is his special set of ball skills. His jumper is accurate to the arc, and he will score in the paint with ease.

Bryant holds offers from schools such as Florida, Ohio State, Syracuse, Villanova, West Virginia and many more. He is getting attention from most every major program.

He plays at Huntington Prep in West Virginia but hails from Rochester, N.Y.

I am going to give Syracuse the inside track for the No. 14 player in the Class of 2015.

#AskCoachB: Duke's 2015 priorities

February, 12, 2014
Feb 12
12:30
PM ET
Want to ask ESPN RecruitingNation national recruiting director Paul Biancardi a question about basketball recruiting? Tweet it to @PaulBiancardi using the hashtag #AskCoachB.



Recruiting never stops, and coaches are always working on classes one or two years down the road. While Duke currently holds the top recruiting class in 2014, coach Mike Krzyzewski and his staff are diving right into the Class of 2015 and beyond.

In the Class of 2015, size is a big need for Duke. The biggest name on the Blue Devils’ board is ESPN 60 No. 1 overall player Ivan Rabb (Oakland, Calif./Bishop O'Dowd), an extremely athletic post who scores, rebounds and blocks shots.

Other names on the list are Diamond Stone (Milwaukee/Dominican), a skilled low- and high-post player; Thomas Bryant (Rochester, N.Y./Huntington Prep), a wide yet mobile big with a soft touch; and Chase Jeter (Las Vegas/Bishop Gorman ), a fundamentally sound inside and outside threat.

Some names to know on the perimeter are ESPN 60 No. 2 Malik Newman (Jackson, Miss./Callaway), Luke Kennard (Franklin, Ohio/Franklin), Brandon Ingram (Kinston, N.C./Kingston) and Charles Matthews (Chicago/St. Rita).

If you are a Duke fan, the biggest thing to remember right now is that the Blue Devils are still in the running for ESPN’s No. 2 2014 prospect Myles Turner (Bedford, Texas/Trinity), who is expected to make a decision when his season is over. While the Duke staff has 2015 targets on the board, wrapping up the 2014 class comes first.

Top players at Hoophall Classic 

January, 19, 2014
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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. -- The 2014 Spalding Hoophall Classic, one of the best events of the year, began its Hall of Fame Showcase of games at Springfield College with matchups involving elite players and programs.

Mr. Productive: J.C Washington (Houston/Yates)
Washington doesn't need a ton of shots to be happy. When his hands touch the ball, something good usually happens. He can score on putbacks and short jumpers in the lane. On defense, he takes charges and rebounds with consistency. But perhaps the most impressive part about Washington is the energy and effort he shows on every possession. A local product, he wants to stay home and be a Cougar.


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USA developmental team camp recap 

October, 6, 2013
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- The USA Basketball Developmental National Team minicamp featured some of the nation's best high school talent representing the classes of 2014, 2015 and 2016. Head coach Don Showalter and his staff put the players through numerous intense and competitive drills, controlled scrimmages and game situations in this four-workout, two-day minicamp.

Note: ESPN 100 No. 1 overall player Jahlil Okafor didn't play on Day 1 after rolling his ankle during a one-on-one in the post drill.

Here are a few players who were impressive this weekend from the ESPN 100, 60 and 25 rankings.

ESPN 100 Standouts

Best Motor
Myles Turner (Bedford, Texas/Trinity)
C, 6-foot-11, 225 pounds
Considering: Kansas, Ohio State, Texas, Duke, Arizona, Kentucky, Louisville, Oklahoma State

Turner's talent and shot blocking is well-documented, but his consistent motor also makes the big fella special. Regardless of the outcome of the possession, Turner never stops playing. He runs, jumps and competes at a high level, which makes him stand out.


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10 things to know about the 2015 class 

June, 13, 2013
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The new player rankings are out and the 2015 class of rising juniors has expanded from the ESPN 25 to the ESPN 60. With these prospects halfway through their high school careers, here are 10 things you need to know about the Class of 2015.

1. There’s a big man invasion

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