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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.
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Tuesday / March 28.
  • LaQuinton Ross Spurring Major Interest

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    Count Bob Huggins and Rick Barnes among the high-major coaches targeting LaQuinton Ross, a 6-foot-8 junior wing from Burlington (N.J.) Life Center Academy who averaged 18 points and 10 rebounds last season.

    “Bob Huggins flew in Monday. Rick Barnes came on Tuesday,” Life Center coach Wilson Arroyo said, referring to the West Virginia and Texas head coaches.

    Since transferring in January from Jackson (Miss.) Murrah High School, Ross has generated a lot of interest from Big East schools.

    Arroyo said Syracuse associate head coach Mike Hopkins, Villanova assistant Doug West and Seton Hall assistant Steve Sauers all came in last week to watch Ross.

    Oklahoma State also flew in to watch Ross. Kentucky, Memphis and Maryland called to express interest. Mississippi State, Baylor and Temple are also involved.

    “The schools recruiting him the hardest right now are Texas, West Virginia, Syracuse and Villanova,” Arroyo said. “Mississippi State, Memphis and Kentucky are somewhere in the mix.”

    Dion Waiters, Ross’s teammate at Life Center, is headed to Syracuse and Ross told BoxofMess.com he would definitely consider playing for the Orange.

    “I probably plan on taking some [visits] this summer…I’m going to narrow [my list] down to the top five next summer. Top five, Syracuse will be in there,” Ross said in the BoxofMess interview.

    As for Seton Hall, Arroyo and Sauers are close and after the Seton Hall assistant invited Ross to check out a college workout, he did so on Thursday.

    “I know Steve Sauers pretty good,” Arroyo said. “He and Coach [Kevin] Willard are doing some really good stuff in workouts and Steve said if Q wanted to come out and watch a college-style  workout, he could. I wanted him to go up there to see what a college-style workout is.

    “Seton Hall’s not far from here. He can do as many unofficials as he wants.”

    This summer Ross will attend the NBA Top 100 Camp and the Kevin Durant and LeBron James Nike Skills Academies.

    With the addition of Ross to the roster, Life Center has become a hot commodity next season.

    Arroyo said the team has been invited to numerous high-profile tournaments and will play in three PrimeTime Shootout events; the Hoophall Classic in Springfield, Mass; and the Battle by the Bay in New Jersey.

    “We’re getting invited to everything,” Arroyo said.

    GJUROSKI TO LA TECH

    Stojan Gjuroski, a 6-7 senior small forward who started alongside Ross at Life Center, has committed to Louisiana Tech. Gjuroski had offers from Quinnipiac and Iona. He averaged 8 points, 5 assists and 4 rebounds

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    Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. 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.

    • Memphis isn’t going after him very hard right now. A lot depends if we land Adonis Thomas, which as of now, looks very promising. From what I hear around Ross’ circle and those around Syracuse, I predict LaQuinton to play for the Orangemen, but anything can change.

      He has high major talent and potential, but he has yet to put it all together. Great mid-range game and has a good handle. Long and rangy, he could be very effective in Syracuse’s system, Kentucky’s DDMO, or Memphis’ motion offense. A lot depends on how he performs this summer

      • Adonis Thomas to memphis has to be the favorite. He played AAU with Memphis Select with Joe Jackson, Tarik Black, Jelan kendrick and chris crawford. And Pastner has been all over him from day 1, the only other school I could see him at is UNC.

        • Adonis’ coach is pissed off right now with Memphis for (he claims) not bothering to travel the three miles between their schools to use all the allowable visits. (Memphis say they have no more visits to use.) If the coach has any influence with Adonis or his father, will this hurt Memphis’ chances of landing Thomas? Doesn’t seem like it’ll help.

          • You’re right, the lines are strained between Coach Johnson and Pastner, but this isn’t the first time a coach has tried to influence a player to go to another school. The last time this happened with Pastner, Tarik Black signed with Memphis after his coach wanted him to go to Marquette.

            Adonis really likes Memphis. He really likes Pastner and the University. At the end of the day, this is actually no news, and Adonis will be a Tiger. He enjoys the recruiting process, but he’ll be wearing blue and gray in 2011.

        • You’re 100% correct. One of the first things Pastner did after receiving the Memphis job was offer Adonis and Jarnell Stokes, who I think will both be future Tigers.

          Adonis’ AAU teammates are at Memphis, his family lives right down the street from Memphis, Pastner himself is recruiting Adonis, and Adonis is on campus unofficially all the time

    • This is like The who’s who of programs the NCAA has to be targeting.

      • Coming from who, a UK fan? Heard of hypocrisy?

        • Nice blatant assumption that Ava is a UK fan, and also a wrong one. Ride the fail train often?

    • Targeting for what? Having good talent in their own backyard?

      • I believe he was implying the NCAA targeting the listed schools for NCAA violations.

        Like your point, however.

        Btw…good PG commitment from Selby. Kansas will have a scary rotation next year, and I can’t wait for a “true” Memphis-Kansas matchup. This past year’s was good, but Memphis had nowhere near the talent they should have had due to Calipari leaving.

        Also really like Royce Woolridge, but he’ll probably redshirt this year.

    • Kentucky top targets are Quincy Miller,LeBryan Nash and Johnny O’Bryant at the forward spot….

      That Avaricious person must be a fan of some irrelevant program that can’t land a high profile recruit.Makes him feel better to spew hate on the programs that can….

      • 2 of those are also Memphis targets. LOL. just had to point that out. UK has got into LeBryan’s recruitment kinda late, and with Mike’s commitment to UK, that kind of hinders their chances with Nash.

        JOB looks like an Ole Miss lean as of now. Gonna be hard to get him out of the South.

        I do think Q ends up at UK, which would mean the top 3 for 2011 are going to UK.

        LMAO. Good last point