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.
The 12-member 2014 USA Basketball Men’s U18 National Team was announced Sunday morning and features seven players boasting of prior USA Basketball experience, including Stanley Johnson (Mater Dei H.S./Fullerton, Calif.), Tyus Jones (Apple Valley H.S./Apple Valley, Minn.) and Justise Winslow (St. John’s School/Houston, Texas), who each have won two gold medals playing internationally for USA Basketball.
Also included on the official USA U18 roster are: Isaiah Briscoe (Roselle Catholic H.S./Union, N.J.); Jaylen Brown (Wheeler H.S./Alpharetta, Ga.); Jalen Brunson (Adlai E. Stevenson H.S./Lincolnshire, Ill.); Luke Kennard (Franklin H.S./Franklin, Ohio); Tyler Lydon (New Hampton School/Elizaville, N.Y.); Dwayne Morgan (St. Francis Academy/Baltimore, Md.); Allonzo Trier (Montrose Christian/Seattle, Wash.); Myles Turner (Trinity H.S./Bedford, Texas); and Stephen Zimmerman (Bishop Gorman H.S./Las Vegas, Nev.).
Chase Jeter, Antonio Blakeney and Thomas Welsh were the last three players cut.
“I’m really excited about the team. As it is every year, it was a really hard selection process because only 12 guys can be on the team. We just tried not necessarily to take the 12 best players, we tried to take the guys that were going to make up the best team,” said Billy Donovan, USA U18 National Team and University of Florida head coach, who led the 2012 U18 and 2013 U19 USA National Teams to gold medals and a combined 14-0 record. “We had the chance to look at this group for almost a week and all of them worked very, very hard. It’s never easy when you’ve got to get down to 12 guys because for as hard as everybody has worked you almost want everybody to be on the team, but it doesn’t work like that so it’s always a challenge.
“I think it always helps,” continued Donovan, speaking about his players who own prior international experience. “We’ve got guys on this team that have played in USA Basketball, some of these guys have won gold medals, some of these guys understand international play. I think that’s a positive because there are some guys on this team who haven’t gone through this before and it will be a new experience for them. I’m happy with these guys; they seem like a great group of kids; they’ve worked hard and I think they understand that they’re all going to have to sacrifice.”
Assisting Donovan along the USA sideline are collegiate head coaches Ed Cooley of Providence College and Sean Miller of the University of Arizona.
The USA team will continue its training June 15-19 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center (USOTC) in Colorado Springs, Colorado. USA Basketball is hosting the 2014 FIBA Americas U18 Championship at the USOTC from June 20-24.
Photo/Release: USA Basketball
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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.