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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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Thursday / May 24.
  • Kimani Young should help UConn draw players from New York and New Jersey

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    By ADAM ZAGORIA

    One day in the fall of 2016, Kimani Young and Minnesota head coach Richard Pitino had a home visit with Jamir Harris, the shooting guard from The Patrick School (N.J.), and his parents.

    The following day, Young and Pitino were back in The Patrick School gym in Hillside, N.J., as was an assistant from a Stanford, who was also there hoping to meet with Harris.

    By the end of the evening, Young and Pitino had closed the deal and Harris had committed to Minnesota before Stanford could really get its foot in the door.

    With Young now officially joining Dan Hurley’s staff at UConn, he should be able to help the Huskies recruit from the fertile recruiting base that is New York and New Jersey. There were four players in last week’s McDonald’s All-American Game from those two states.

    “Kimani relates well with kids in the tri-state,” Patrick School coach Chris Chavannes told me Wednesday. “He is well know and respected. He has deep ties to players and coaches in the area. He is a very good recruiter. Once again Danny is showing why the sky is the limit for him as a coach.”

    St. Raymond’s coach Jorge Lopez, who coached current Minnesota freshman guard Isaiah Washington, concurred.

    “Kimani will be a great asset to Hurley’s coaching staff,” he said. “He will certainly be able to draw high level players to UConn. Kimani has a great rapport with many of the high school and AAU coaches in the tri-state area. Kimani did his due diligence in recruiting Isaiah Washington and was one of the primary reasons why he committed to Minnesota.”

    As reported here before Hurley was hired at UConn, high school and AAU coaches in the New York and New Jersey area generally have respect and fondness for Hurley. Many feel the same way about Young, a former AAU coach with the New York-based New Heights program.

    “Kimani is well liked by a lot of people in New York and New Jersey,” Christ the King coach Joe Arbitello said. “He is always honest and true to his word that’s why his relationships are so strong in the basketball community.”

    Roselle (N.J.) Catholic coach Dave Boff, whose team has won three New Jersey Tournament of Champions titles since 2013 and features Class of 2019 wing Kahlil Whitney, among others, agreed.

    “He recruits this area well, so I would think he could do even better now that he’s recruiting to a Northeast school,” Boff said.

    Pat Masssaroni led Archbishop Stepinac High School to the New York State Federation championship.

    “Kimani has many connections to the New York and New Jersey area,” he said. “He has done a really good job recruiting local players so his addition to the UConn staff will be valuable.”

    Speaking to UConn SID Phil Chardis, Hurley said:

    Photo: WPID

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    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.