When you have star-studded events every week in the spring and summer, there are bound to be break-out players. Whether it’s the Pangos All-American Camp, Nike EYBL or a plethora of other events, summer basketball provides every basketball player from every team the opportunity to make a name for himself. Lets take a look at some of the guys who have taken advantage of this and which prospect’s stock is rising the most.
Mitch McGary ¦ Power Forward ¦ Not Ranked
McGary has been one of the biggest breakout players so far in the AAU circuit but one factor in his recruitment that was different from other prospect’s was that colleges had to worry about his grades. Now that his academics are in order, schools can focus on the basketball side of things like his great performance again class of 2012 power forward Robert Carter (#33) at the Under Armour Best of the Best in which he played with great intensity and claimed the interior as his. He also displayed impressive turn-around and face-up jumpers that complemented his interior game well. He did a good job passing too but more importantly did a terrific job on the defensive end as he was the only person to stop Carter one-on-one all weekend.
His recruitment: Before McGary broke out onto the scene, he had visited schools like Purdue, Indiana, Illinois and Marquette but now he has the likes of Duke, Kansas and Kentucky being in near-constant contact with him. He says that his recruitment is wide open and that he will likely wait until late in the process to make his decision. He also says location isn’t a factor in his choice. In his latest visit, he took a visit to College Park to see what Maryland and Terrapin head coach Mark Turgeon has to offer a few days ago but does not have any ties to the area. On a separate note, the Indiana-native says he had a very good visit when he went to Connecticut and that head coach Jim Calhoun‘s decision to retire or not will play a role in his recruitment.
Anthony Bennett ¦ Power Forward ¦ Not Ranked
Bennett has consistently been a presence in every tournament and camp that he’s participated in so far with the culmination being his spectacular performance at the Pangos All-American Camp. He has good size and athleticism and plays with a good motor and aggressive mindset. He displayed the ability to impact the game in every phrase between his 16-point, game-high four steals, two rebounds and one assist stat line during the Pangos all-star game at the end of the weekend. Bennett shot extremely well from the field in the same game too as he went 7-8 from the field and 2-3 from behind the arc.
His recruitment: Bennett is currently considering Connecticut, Iowa State, Oklahoma, West Virginia and UNLV just to name a few but expect him to pick up many more high-major offers by the time the summer circuit ends. He says Arizona, Oregon, Washington, Connecticut, West Virginia and Florida are recruiting him the hardest and that “Arizona is a good school.” Bennett has also said recently that he plans on making a decision late next year. When asked what Connecticut is talking to him about, he said “they’re just telling that they’re a top school, they play great competition and they’ll get me better.”
Skip to 2:08 to see Bennett’s windmill dunks at the Pangos All-American Camp.
Alex Caruso ¦ Shooting Guard ¦ Not Ranked
Caruso’s stock really shot through the roof at the Pangos All-American Camp last weekend where he was clearly the biggest breakout player. He is a wing who displayed the ability to finish, make impressive passes and create scoring opportunities for himself. He also exhibited a nice jumper and good athleticism as he utilized the dribble-drive effectively. He surprised with his athleticism as well and showed the ability to knock down shots from a variety of spots around the floor whether it was in catch-and-shoot situations or off the dribble. Look for his stock to continue to rise — especially if he has an impressive outing at the NBPA Top 100 Camp — and to get on the radar of several high-major collegiate programs.
His recruitment: From the beginning, Caruso has even said that he has a bias towards Texas A&M since his father is the current associate athletic director for the Aggies and because he grew up as the ball boy. However, they have not offered him a scholarship. It’s also been reported that Arizona State and Colorado like him and that he will take an unofficial visit to Creighton, where his dad played college basketball at. Expect his number of scholarship offers to rise as his stock continues to soar.
Kris Dunn ¦ Point Guard ¦ Not Ranked
In a class thin at the point guard position, Dunn has been a standout so far this summer and his stock has shot up like few others. He is a good ball-handler and finisher and does a great job operating in the lane since he has tremendous body control and good explosiveness around the basket. He is a versatile guard who can play either position — the point or two — and shoots the ball well. He also had good range on his shot and does a good job of creating for his teammates too. He has a lot of potential and upside and could become a great defender too but he needs to cut down on the turnovers.
His recruitment: Since his stock is rising very quickly, he will get many more high-major offers but right now he is considering the likes of Boston College, Connecticut, Marquette, Providence and Rhode Island.
See what all of the buzz is about below:
Justin Anderson ¦ Small Forward ¦ Rank: #45
Anderson is similar to Muhammad in the sense that they’re both great slashers who have improved their shooting. Anderson is a tremendous athlete who can get to the rim seemingly whenever he wants and is a force to reckon with in transition. The biggest knock on him going into the summer was that his shot was a little flat and needed to be improved upon. Well now, after countless numbers of hours of work he put in, his shot has certainly improved and has more arc and consistency than I’ve ever seen out of him. His shot selection has also improved and I love his aggressive mentality in driving to the basket and getting into the lane. Look for him to crack the top-20 when we update our class of 2012 rankings if not higher.
His recruitment: Anderson committed to the University of Virginia a couple of weeks ago just days after he de-committed from Maryland after Mark Turgeon became the head man for the Terps and replaced Gary Williams. The Cavaliers have long been his second choice and he told us in an interview that it was an easy decision for him once he decided not to go to Maryland.