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.
Lance Announcement to Appear on SNY; 'Born Ready' on MTV
Lance Stephenson is expected to name Kansas as his college destination when he makes his announcement Tuesday at the McDonald’s All-American Game in Miami.
“My guess is Kansas based on his cancelling of the [college] announcement at [Madison Square] Garden and the fact that he wants to be able to have a chance to win a national championship,” a source close to the Stephenson family said.
Brooklyn Sal of SNY will be in Miami to conduct an exclusive one-on-one interview with Stephenson after his announcement.
McDonald’s officials say the announcement will come Tuesday morning at 11:45 during its media day. The dunk contest, 3-point contest and skills competition will take place Monday (7 p.m., ESPN2) and the game itself is on Wednesday (8 p.m., ESPN). Brooklyn Sal’s interview will air on SNY’s “Daily News Live” and “Geico SportsNite” if he announces Tuesday.
Stephenson was the only McDonald’s All-American not on hand for Sunday’s first practice in Miami. The other 23 players are reportedly there. Stephenson will room with North Carolina-bound guard Dexter Strickland of St. Patrick of Elizabeth (N.J.)
The 6-foot-5 Stephenson, a senior guard at Brooklyn Lincoln who is New York State’s all-time leading scorer, is the No. 1 recruit in the Class of 2009, according to the Hoop Scoop and No. 9 by Rivals. He recently said he had already made his decision and had chosen from among Kansas, Maryland and St. John’s.
Because he did not make his announcement after Lincoln won its fourth straight PSAL title March 21 at the Garden, he is not expected to announce for St. John’s.
“The fact that he cancelled the thing at the Garden leads me to believe it’s not St. John’s,” the source said.
Stephenson has said he wants a chance to win a national championship and he and his family have developed a close relationship with Kansas assistant Danny Manning, a former No. 1 draft pick.
“Danny Manning, I look up to him a lot,” Stephenson said. “He’s a great player and a great assistant coach so I think he’s good.”
Stephenson scored 14 points in his final high school game Saturday, a 77-50 loss to Rice in the New York State Federation AA semifinals.
Behind 23 points from Miami-bound guard Durand Scott (pictured with Rice coach Moe Hicks), Rice went on to beat Newburgh Free Academy 70-68 Sunday to capture the State Federation Class AA championship at the Civic Center.
Maryland coach Gary Williams was on hand for the Lincoln-Rice game to watch Stephenson and Maryland-bound forward James Padgett.
“I was surprised to see him,” Stephenson told the New York Post.
BORN READY ON MTV
For still more Lance on TV check out the documentary series “Born Ready” March 30-April 2 at 11 p.m. on MTV2.
**For even more on Lance, read this extensive piece in The New Republic.
(Photos courtesy Daily News and AP)
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.