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Tag:Villanova
Posted on: March 1, 2012 4:47 pm
Edited on: March 1, 2012 4:48 pm
 

Five-star junior Al Freeman down to two: KU, Nova

By Jeff Borzello

In October, five-star junior Allerik Freeman “trimmed” his list to a top 12. After a couple quiet months on the recruiting front, Freeman cut his list on Thursday afternoon.

Freeman, ranked No. 14 in the class of 2013, is down to two: Villanova and Kansas.

“Great coaches, great programs,” Freeman told CBSSports.com. “They’re recruiting me the hardest and I feel the most comfortable with these two.”

Freeman is a strong 6-foot-4 guard from Olympic (N.C.) who improved drastically last spring and summer. He uses his body to score around the rim, and he’s a good playmaker with the pass or when running the break. Freeman also expanded his game to include a more consistent jump shot and 3-point shot.

Right now, ‘Nova and Kansas are neck and neck -- and he doesn't have plans to make a decision.

"I don't have a timetable," Freeman said. "Just whenever the time is right. 

“They are both even."

Posted on: January 20, 2012 10:34 am
 

Amile Jefferson could be on verge of decision

By Jeff Borzello

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – For the past couple of months, it has seemed like Amile Jefferson was on the verge of making a decision.

This time, he might really mean it.

“It’s getting close,” Jefferson said over the weekend. “I’m hoping it’s soon. It’s day-to-day. We’re going to sit down and give each coach one more call.”

Jefferson, a 6-foot-9 forward from Friends Central (Pa.), is ranked No. 13 in CBSSports.com’s Top 100. He is considering five schools heading into the home stretch: Villanova, Ohio State, North Carolina State, Kentucky and Duke.

“There’s a lot of pressure,” Jefferson said. “You get the pressure from fans. There’s no more courting. People want you to make a decision.”

Duke is one of the schools getting plenty of attention with Jefferson the past few weeks. Mike Krzyzewski turned up the heat on him recently, becoming a major player in his recruitment after sniffing around for a while.

The Blue Devils are squarely in the mix.

“Duke was always a school I had interest in,” Jefferson said. “I’ve been talking to Coach K. You go there, you know you have a chance to compete for national championships and play with some of the best players in the country.”

Before Duke was one of the finalists, Jefferson had taken official visits to Villanova, Ohio State, NC State and Kentucky – but not to Duke. In fact, he hasn’t seen the Durham campus since his sophomore year.

However, it doesn’t look like that will hurt the Blue Devils’ chances.

“I don’t think so,” Jefferson said. “I’ve seen a lot and I talk to coach K and coach [Chris] Collins a lot.”

Is Duke the new favorite? We’ll see by the end of the month – maybe.

Photo: Adidas Nations

Posted on: January 10, 2012 10:37 am
Edited on: January 10, 2012 12:13 pm
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Posted on: December 30, 2011 12:50 pm
 

Five-star junior Troy Williams trims list to five

By Jeff Borzello

Five-star junior Troy Williams celebrated his birthday on Friday. He also trimmed his list to five schools.

Williams announced on Twitter that his final five choices were North Carolina, Kentucky, Georgetown, Virginia Tech and Villanova.

“They’re schools that play my style of play, and they’re also not that far for my family,” Williams told CBSSports.com in a text message.

Williams has visited all of the schools on his list, outside of Villanova. He leaves today for a weekend trip to Kentucky.

Williams, a 6-foot-6 small forward from Pheobus (Va.), is one of the best scoring wings in the class. He has deep range on his 3-point shot, and he has a very solid mid-range game as well. On the defensive end, Williams’ length and athleticism are assets in the passing lanes.

He is ranked No. 8 in CBSSports.com’s Top 100 for 2013.

Posted on: December 14, 2011 12:37 pm
 

Stanford Robinson comfortable as facilitator

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By
Jeff Borzello

HYATTSVILLE, Md. – Stanford Robinson might not score as much as some other top guards in the class of 2013, but that certainly doesn’t mean he’s not as good.

Paul VI (Va.) is one of the top teams in the WCAC, and the Panthers are blessed with a deep and talented roster. Four seniors have already committed to go D-I. As a result, it’s not necessary for Robinson to lead the team in scoring every night.

“I’m a scorer, but on this team we have a lot of scorers,” Robinson said. “I don’t think we have anybody that needs to score 30 points a game for us to win.”

Robinson, a 6-foot-4 prospect who ranks No. 71 in CBSSports.com’s Top 100, is certainly able to get points when needed. He has a strong body and is an effective finisher in the lane, while also possessing the ability to step outside and knock down jumpers. He does need to become more aggressive, though, if he wants to reach his true potential.

“We like to share the ball,” Robinson said. “Right now I’m being a facilitator and creating shots for my team, but when I need to, I can score the ball.”

His high ceiling has led to several schools pursuing him in the past few months. Robinson holds offers from Marquette, North Carolina State, Virginia Tech, Villanova, Miami (Fl.), South Florida, Rutgers and Xavier. Syracuse and Maryland are showing interest.

Over the summer, he checked out Villanova, Virginia Tech, North Carolina State and Miami (Fl.). Despite the trips, he’s not ready to make a decision.

“It’s still early,” Robinson said. “I don’t think I’m going to commit until the beginning of the school year next year.”

With his versatile talents, Robinson can afford to be picky with his college. However, he thinks he can thrive in any system.

“I can fit anywhere,” he said.

Posted on: December 13, 2011 12:48 pm
Edited on: December 13, 2011 12:49 pm
 

Ja'Quan Newton is one of the best PGs in 2014

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By
Jeff Borzello

WASHINGTON D.C. – The class of 2014 is shaping up to be a dynamite high school class, especially at the point guard position.

One of the top lead guards in the class is Ja’Quan Newton, a 6-foot-2 prospect out of Neumann-Goretti in Philadelphia. At the Gonzaga DC Classic over the weekend, Newton was one of the best players. He averaged 19.7 points in three games, including 28 in the semifinals. While North Carolina-bound Nate Britt and host Gonzaga knocked off Newton’s troops in the championship game, he did solidify himself as a top-50 prospect in 2014.

“I played pretty good, considering it was the first game of the season,” Newton said after the tournament opener.

Newton is a very good scorer who can beat his defender off the bounce consistently. He knows how to get to the rim and finish, and his speed and quickness are a huge asset in transition. Newton is adept at drawing defenders in the lane and then finding open teammates for shots. Over the summer, Newton showed an ability to facilitate offense in the half-court with Team Final.

While he was able to knock down several jumpers at the event, he’s looking to improve his outside shooting.

“I’m working on my jumpshot and my defense,” Newton said. “Also, making my teammates better.”

In terms of recruiting, expect Newton to be a sought-after prospect over the next couple of years. He is already hearing from Rutgers, Villanova, Georgetown, North Carolina State, Maryland, Boston College, Saint Joseph’s and others.

Although he’s not planning to finish his recruitment soon, Newton has taken trips to Rutgers, Villanova and Saint Joseph’s.

Posted on: December 12, 2011 1:42 pm
 

Kris Jenkins uses versatility to his advantage

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By
Jeff Borzello

WASHINGTON D.C. – Kris Jenkins doesn’t have a true position.

He’s not a small forward, he’s not a power forward, and he’s not a shooting guard. And Jenkins is just fine with that.

“I don’t really have a definite position,” Jenkins said. “I’m a basketball player. You can’t limit me to one position.”

Jenkins is a 6-foot-5 junior from Gonzaga (D.C.) who has been on the radar for several years. He’s a physical player who can step outside and knock down 3-pointers, and is still effective at scoring around the rim. Jenkins seems to have become more athletic in the past few months, too.

At the next level, Jenkins might have to make the move to the perimeter on a full-time basis, so he’s working on other skills.

“I need to be more assertive,” he said. “I’m working on lateral movement, handling the ball under pressure.”

Jenkins is getting plenty of college interest. He holds offers from Rutgers, Miami (Fl.), Xavier, George Washington and Penn State, with interest coming in from Villanova and Boston College.

He’s looking for a school that will help advance him both athletically and academically.

“Good academics, a place that’s going to prep me for the real world,” Jenkins said. “Also, a good basketball program that gives me an opportunity to fulfill my dream.”

Jenkins took trips in October to Penn State and George Washington, but he’s not close to making a decision.

“I’m focused on the season,” Jenkins said.

Photo: Washington Post

Posted on: December 12, 2011 12:55 pm
 

Josh Hart gets bigger, expands his game

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By
Jeff Borzello

WASHINGTON D.C. – For many players, shooting outside jumpers and finishing at the rim is all that matters. For Josh Hart, it makes him want to expand his game.

“My coach said I was always settling for a 3 or dunking,” Hart said at the Gonzaga DC Classic. “I need that in-between game.”

Hart, a 6-foot-4 guard from Sidwell Friends (D.C.), is one of the top shooting guards in the mid-Atlantic region for the class of 2013. He has gotten stronger and bigger since the summer, giving him another asset to use offensively. He constantly attacked the rim with aggression, despite taking a few hard spills. On the defensive end, Hart also showed good athleticism, contesting shots and grabbing boards.

In addition to his mid-range game, Hart is also working on his ball-handling ability. Once he irons out the wrinkles offensively, he is going to be a big-time scorer.

As a result, several schools are in the mix for Hart. He holds offers from Georgetown, North Carolina State, VCU, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Penn State and Xavier. Moreover, Georgia Tech, Maryland, DePaul, Villanova and Saint Joseph’s are all showing interest.

“I want to play up-tempo, and a good coaching staff,” Hart said when asked what he was looking for in a school.

He is not ready to make a decision in the near future.

“I’m focusing on school,” Hart said. “I’m just letting everything happen.”

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com