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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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Sunday / June 16.
  • Julius Randle could be added as the 25th McDonald’s All-American this year if he proves he’s healthy enough in the next few weeks, committee chairman Morgan Wootten told SNY.tv Friday.

    “What we’ll certainly do with Julius — one of the great players in the country, no question, a legitimate four-year man — we’ll take a real good look and see how he comes back physically,” Wootten told SNY.tv. “That’s the key. Everybody knows he can play. It’s just a question of whether he’s physically sound or not.”

    The 6-foot-9 Randle out of Prestonwood (TX) Christian was left off the 24-man McDonald’s roster announced Thursday. He has been out since Thanksgiving with a foot injury, but is expected to debut with his team tonight (Friday).

    If he plays well and proves himself over the final weeks of the season, he could add a McDonald’s All-American selection to his Jordan Brand Classic selection.

    Wootten said there is precedence for adding injured players after the initial list comes out, pointing out that  former DeMatha Catholic star Dereck Whittenburg was added late in 1979 after he returned from a broken foot.

    Kentucky assistant Orlando Antigua came away impressed with 2013 point guard Emmanuel Owootoah Thursday night.

    Owootoah went for 15 points, 10 assists, 7 rebounds and 6 steals as Cordia (Ky.) beat Jackson City, 81-30, according to Scott Anderson of NationofBlue.com.

    “Orlando was at the game,” Cordia coach Rodrick Rhodes told SNY.tv.

    “He liked the kid. He thought the kid can play at that level. He said he’s going to send another assistant coach to take a second look. He was impressed with his speed, wiht his vision and he told me he really liked the kid, so I took that as a positive.”

    Don’t piss off the Canadians.

    That is the message Tyler Ennis and his fellow Canuck Andrew Wiggins have sent in recent days.

    On the same day he was snubbed for the McDonald’s All-American Game, the Syracuse-bound Ennis went off for a school-record 53 points in a 116-65 rout of Eastern (N.J.) at the Scholastic Play by Play Classic Thursday at Burlington (N.J.) Life Center Academy.

    The 6-foot-2 Ennis learned shortly before the game that he had been left off the roster for the McDonald’s Game April 3 at Chicago’s United Center.

    “We were pissed, our team was pissed,” St. Benedict’s Prep coach Mark Taylor, whose team is ranked No. 5 by USA Today, told SNY.tv. “Tyler was upset.”

     

    Dakari Johnson is the lone Kentucky commit on the McDonald’s All-American East roster.

    Four of his future teammates are on the West squad in the game set for April 3 at Chicago’s United Center.

    The way Johnson figures it, the organizers may just have been afraid to put all five future Wildcats on the same team for fear of the havoc they might wreak.

    Kentucky and coach John Calipari have the top-ranked recruiting class in the nation.

    “I guess they didn’t want the world to see what all five of us could do on the court at the same time,” Johnson, a 6-foot-10 center from Montverde (Fla.) Academy, joked to SNY.tv.

    Julius Randle will return to the basketball court Friday for the first time since suffering a foot injury two days after Thanksgiving.

    Randle, a 6-foot-9 senior forward at Prestonwood (TX) Christian, will play in his team’s district playoff game against Bishop Lynch.

    “He’s coming back,” his mother, Carolyn Kyles, told USA Today. “He’s really excited. He’s been doing really well in rehab and he’s been full-contact in practice all week. The coaches are saying that he’s looking like he’s on his way to being the old Julius and even better. They’re saying it’s looking great.”

    Florida coach Billy Donovan watched Randle work out Thursday and  was highly impressed.

    Andrew Wiggins headlines the roster for the 2013 McDonald’s All-American Game set for April 3 at the United Center in Chicago.

    “Oh, it’s just a blessing from God,” the 6-foot-8 Wiggins out of Huntington (W.V.) Prep said on ESPNU when he was named to the East roster. “It’s a blessing.”

    Five Kentucky commits — Andrew and Aaron Harrison, Dakari Johnson, Marcus Lee and James Young — were also named to the game, the most number of players ever from one school. Those same five will play in the Jordan Brand Classic April 13 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

    Wiggins is the latest Canadian named to the game, following a recent group of countrymen that included Tristan Thompson, Cory Joseph, Myck Kabongo, Khem Birch, Anthony Bennett and Kyle Wiltjer.

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