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 Tops Hoop Scoop Rankings, Scrimmages Harris; Big East Breakdown of Top 150
Clark Francis’ rankings of the Top Seniors in the Class of 2009 are out and Brooklyn Lincoln guard Lance Stephenson tops the list.
Stephenson has said he will wait until the spring to announce his future plans. St. John’s, Kansas and USC are among the schools recruiting him, and some speculate he may also opt to follow Brandon Jennings to Europe.
Derrick Favors of South Atlanta follows at No. 2; Plantation (Fl.) American Heritage guard Kenny Boynton (Florida) is No. 3; Mobile (Al.) LeFlore center DeMarcus Cousins (UAB) is No. 4; and Elizabeth (N.J.) St. Patrick guard Dexter Strickland (North Carolina) is No. 5.
The next five include Putnam City (Ok.) guard Xavier Henry (Memphis); Tampa (Fl.) Sickles forward John Henson (North Carolina); Tacoma (Wash.) guard Abdul Gaddy (Washington); Findlay (Nev.) Prep guard Avery Bradley (Texas); and St. Anthony (N.J.) wing Dominic Cheek.
Of local interest: Glen Mills (Pa.) big man Aaric Murray is No. 19; Philly Roman Catholic point guard Maalik Wayns (Villanova) is No. 26; Rice guard Durand Scott (Miami) is No. 30; South Kent (Conn.) guard Omari Lawrence (St. John’s) is No. 61; South Kent (Conn.) wing Kevin Parrom (Xavier) is No. 64; Newark (NJ) St. Benedict’s guard Tamir Jackson (Rice) is No. 71; Pennsbury (Pa.) guard Dalton Pepper (West Virginia) is No. 73; Rush-Henrietta (NY) forward Dane Miller (Rutgers) is No. 87; Brooklyn Lincoln forward James Padgett (Maryland) is No. 100; Torrington (Conn.) forward Jordan Williams (Maryland) is No. 119; Newark (NJ) St. Benedict’s forward Lamar Patterson (Pittsburgh) is No. 136.
Clark also gave me his Top 10 list of 5th-year players:
2-Dante Taylor (Pitt)
3-Rashanti Harris (Georgia State)
4-Jordan Hamilton (TExas)
5-Alex Oriakhi (UConn)
7-Karron Johnson (Oklahoma State)
8-Roscoe Davis (West Virginia)
9-Clarence Trent (Washington)
10-Chris Braswell (Charlotte)
BIG EAST BREAKDOWNGeorgetown: No. 15 WF Hollis Thompson; No. 33 C Da’Shonte Riley
Louisville: No. 52 PG Peyton Siva; No. 86 PF Rakeem Buckles; No. 115 PF Stephan Van Treese
Marquette: No. 12 PG Junior Cadougan; No. 14 WF Erik Williams; No. 23 PF Jeronne MaymonNotre Dame: No. 108 PF Jack CooleyPittsburgh: No. 117 C Talib Zanna; No. 136 WF Lamar Patterson; No. 2 PF Dante Taylor (5th-year player)Providence: No. 133 PF James StillRutgers: No. 87 PF Dane MillerSt. John’s: No. 61 WF Omari LawrenceUConn: No. 5 Alex Oriakhi; No. 11 Jamal Coombs (both 5th-year players)
Villanova: No. 22 C Mouphtaou Yarou; No. 26 PG Maalik Wayns; No. 51 PF Isaiah ArmwoodWest Virginia: No. 72 SG Dalton Pepper; No. 102 PF Deniz Kilicli
STEPHENSON SCRIMMAGES HARRIS
By Guest Blogger Wes Harris
Lance Stephenson and his Lincoln High squad, ranked No. 3 in the USA Today Super 25 preseason rankings, made the trip out to Long Island Saturday to scrimmage an upstart Long Island Lutheran squad. The matchup featured the highly-anticipated pairing of Lance and LuHi junior standout Tobias Harris, as the two faced off for the first time since IS8 this past summer.
Harris scored 28 points on 9-of-16 shooting, added 9 rebounds, 4 blocks, 3 assists and 2 steals.
Stephenson finished with a very efficient 36 points.
The young Lutheran team was able to more than hold their own, however, with the starters only losing to the Lincoln starters by a four point margin. This was due in large part to the play of 6-4 sophomore wing Achraf Yocoubou. The former American Christian product, who played alongside Memphis freshman Tyreke Evans and Oak Hill’s MoMo Jones (Virginia Tech) a year ago under Tony Bergeron, had 30 points and seemed to gain the respect of Stephenson, who switched off of Harris to guard him about midway through the scrimmage.
According to Lutheran assistant John Buck, Yocoubou already holds offers from Memphis, UConn, Villanova, Wake Forest and Fordham, and is garnering interest from North Carolina.
Maryland signee James Padgett and St. Pat’s transfer Shaquille Stokes both played well for Lincoln, while Harris finished with 26 for Lutheran, who play at St. Anthony Jersey City on Feb. 10.
Lance and Lincoln open this Tuesday against arch rival Grady.
-Sat next to Xavier guard Torrel Holloway’s dad who said his son is out 2-4 weeks with a stress fracture in his foot. He’s actually been hurt since before the Puerto Rico trip but after getting through those games, Sean Miller wants to make sure he’s healthy heading into conference play.
– former Lutheran guard Jeriel Henriquez was at the scrimmage and he’s currently at prep school down in Florida and claims to have interest from St. John’s and Clemson.
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.