Class of '24 Five-Star Liam McNeeley talks recruitment and Peach Jam Expereince | Zagsblog
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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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Wednesday / October 27.
  • Class of ’24 Five-Star Liam McNeeley talks recruitment and Peach Jam Expereince

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    By TOBIAS BASS

    With Peach Jam coming to a close Sunday, we had the chance to see numerous prospects make a name for themselves in North Augusta, SC, including class of 2024 five-star forward Liam McNeeley.

    The 6-foot-7, 190-pound forward from Richardson (TX) and the Drive Nation AAU Program, averaged 21 points, eight rebounds and four assists for Drive Nation’s 15U squad before being moved up to the 17U team, playing alongside four-star wing Jordan Walsh and four-star center Vince Iwuchukwu.

    “I was honored that our coaches and Jermaine O’Neal asked me,” McNeely said. “As a program, we have been practicing together all season. There is amazing talent on that team and I was proud to be part of it and just wanted to make sure I did my best and whatever I could do to help us win games. All the guys on the team took me under their wing and really made me feel like I could hang.

    “It was awesome to have the opportunity to play. I have been dreaming about EYBL since elementary school. I felt like I played my hardest throughout the tournament and appreciate the endurance it takes.”

    Just three weeks ago, McNeeley was ranked as the No. 12 overall prospect in ESPN’s initial class of 2024 rankings.

    “It was crazy and so cool to be included in that group of players,” he said. “I know a lot of those guys and respect their game.”

    Being a five-star recruit comes with a lot of pressure and McNeeley plans on taking it one day at a time and getting better with each rep.

    “I have been trying to get stronger by doing strength and agility training,” he said. “I have also been trying to improve my handles and shooting.”

    Earlier this year, McNeeley was selected to the Team USA U16 camp and since then, with a strong performance on the Nike EYBL circuit, his recruitment has picked up.

    McNeeley is currently eyeing visits to Oklahoma, Iowa, Illinois, Texas A&M, Texas, Texas Tech, and Ole Miss he plans on scheduling visits at a later date.


    “I haven’t had a chance to visit any schools yet,” McNeeley said. “I hope to visit some schools when I get back from USA Basketball.”

    McNeeley has heard from schools in the Big 12, Big 10, ACC, SEC, Pac-12, AAC and Conference USA.

    “I am really excited about each school I have talked to and received an offer from,” he said. “Getting to know the coaches is great. The coaches I have heard received offers from have talked about my versatility and IQ.”

    It’s still very early for the Richardson, Texas native in the recruiting process, but he knows what he looking for in a program at the next level.

    “I am looking for a great team and academics,” he said. “I want to play for a coach who is going to help me develop as a player and as a person.”

    Heading into his sophomore year, McNeeley opted to transfer to John Paul II (TX) to play alongside four-star guard RJ Jones.

    “I liked their style of play and pace of game,” McNeeley said. “The school is really good in terms of academics and it felt like a good fit for me. We played together in the first live period and I’m expecting us to win the TAPPS 6A state championship.”

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