Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
Kansas Recruiting Lance, Cheek; Hurley on USA Basketball
Good story today by Gary Bedore of the Lawrence Journal-World about how Kansas coach Bill Self is more recognizable on the recruiting trail this summer after winning an NCAA championship.
“One thing that is a positive … we are a little more recognizable now. You walk in a crowded gym, and they may recognize you. We’ve gotten a little added airtime,” Self told Bedore.
Self and his staff, including Jersey’s own Joe Dooley, are working on a number of high-profile targets, including Xavier Henry, a 6-foot-6 guard/forward from Putnam City (Okla.) High, who averaged 24 points a game at the Nike Peach Jam.
Henry says he’s down to Kansas, Memphis, UCLA and Texas, but we hear it will be between Memphis and Kansas. Both his parents attended Kansas.
Self and his staff are also targeting Brooklyn Lincoln star Lance Stephenson, the No. 2 shooting guard in the Class of 2009, and St. Anthony standout Dominic Cheek, ranked No. 4. Both players have listed Kansas among their choices, with Stephenson saying it’s down to Kansas, USC, UCLA, Tennessee, Texas, Memphis and St. John’s. His father’s list did not include Texas and Tennessee.
Dooley has already proven he can recruit the Northeast hard, having landed St. Anthony guard Tyshawn Taylor, St. Patrick big man Quintrell Thomas and twins Marcus and Markieff Morris out of Apex Academies in South Jersey.
Speaking of Cheek….
St. Anthony coach Bob Hurley had this to say about Cheek and the USA U18 National Team losing in the gold medal game to Argentina.
“I’m sure he was disappointed that they didn’t win the gold medal and I know he’s somewhat disappointed that he didn’t have a bigger role. But I think the whole experience will be a very good experience for him. So I think we can mitigate some of the negatives with the fact that he had a chance to really work with three very good coaches (Bob McKillop, Anthony Grant and John Thompson III) for 21 days, and build up some friendships. And for the first time in his life he got a call to the bench. He had to try to figure out how to please the coach and I think that’s going to help his empathy towards teammates in high school because he got into that situation where he knows what it’s like for a kid to be battling to get on the court.”
Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle.
A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013.
He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.