Play Fantasy The Most Award Winning Fantasy game with real time scoring, top expert analysis, custom settings, and more. Play Now
 
Tag:USC
Posted on: January 27, 2012 12:26 pm
Edited on: January 27, 2012 1:17 pm
 

Shabazz Muhammad keeps everyone guessing

No. 1 prospect Shabazz Muhammad has not given any hints as to where he's headed next year. (US Presswire)

By Jeff Borzello

Everyone wants to know where Shabazz Muhammad will play his college basketball next season. As the consensus top prospect in the class of 2012, his decision has the attention of fans, casual observers, recruitniks, coaches – everyone.

Muhammad’s classmates at Bishop Gorman (Nev.) are no different.

“Probably 10 times a day in school,” Muhammad said last week when asked how often he hears the question. “Everyone wants to know. I don’t mind it. I just say I don’t know yet.

“I’m still looking at all my schools.”

Muhammad, a 6-foot-5 small forward, has had a pretty static list for the past year. UCLA, Kentucky, UNLV, Duke, Arizona, Kansas and USC are the ones jockeying for his services right now.

He’s taken his time throughout the process, only taking official visits to Kentucky and Texas A&M so far. He won’t make a decision until he’s taken all five of his officials.

“Probably when I’m done with my visits,” Muhammad said. “I have three more officials, and I’m definitely going to take them. I’ll have them scheduled in a month or so.”

For now, he said he’s looking at Duke, Kansas and Arizona for the remaining visits. Because they’re so close to home, UCLA and UNLV likely won’t receive official visits.

“It’s worthwhile to go to a farther school for an official, since they’re paying,” Muhammad said.

UNLV seems to be gaining some traction in his recruitment, especially after picking up Pittsburgh transfer Khem Birch. Moreover, the hometown school has been on Muhammad as long as anyone, and the Runnin’ Rebels performance this season is just proving that the program is on the rise.

They’re certainly in the mix for Muhammad.

“The program is really coming along,” he said. “They got Khem Birch, some other recruits. They’re a great program, they’re going to be a great team. I’m really looking forward to getting more involved with the recruitment.”

Muhammad also said he would be OK staying at home in Las Vegas.

John Calipari and a couple of assistants were in attendance for Muhammad’s game at the Hoophall Classic against DeMatha Catholic (Md.). The Wildcats are continuing to turn up the heat on Muhammad.

“The interest level is high,” Muhammad said. “Coach Cal was at my game. I talked to them a week ago. I just think I fit really well in their style of play.”

Another school that sent a head coach and two assistants was Duke, as Mike Krzyzewski was front-and-center for Muhammad’s nationally-televised game.

“Coach K is just a mastermind,” he said. “I’m really getting excited about going down there.”

The school that has been associated with Muhammad’s recruitment for most of the past two years was UCLA. The Bruins are squarely in the mix for him, and the addition of top-five prospect Kyle Anderson in the fall can only help.

“Who wouldn’t want to play with Kyle?” Muhammad said. “How he sees the floor is just remarkable.”

Another school in the running for an official visit from Muhammad is Arizona. The Wildcats have the top recruiting class in the country right now, and adding the No. 1 prospect would cement its spot atop the rankings.

Moreover, Sean Miller would have one of the most talented rosters around.

“I think I would fit really well,” Muhammad said. “They run a high-tempo style.”

Style of play is Muhammad’s most important factor in his recruitment. He prefers a mostly half-court style where he could use his tremendous scoring ability to his advantage, but he also wants some fast-break opportunities where he can get out in transition.

Muhammad won’t let the pressure get to him; he’s set on taking his time and making an informed decision after his season ends.

“It’s kind of weighing on me, but I’m still weighing my options out.”

Posted on: September 20, 2011 1:25 pm
 

Two schools on top for Negus Webster-Chan

INTERESTED TEAMS:



By
Jeff Borzello

Since Louisville and Negus Webster-Chan parted ways back in April, it’s been pretty quiet on the recruiting front for the Canada native.

That will change soon, as Webster-Chan is in the process of taking visits and hopes to make a decision by November.

He has taken trips to Missouri and Iowa State, and those two Big 12 (for now) schools sit as the favorites.

“They recruit me the hardest out of all,” Webster-Chan said. “Both have really great coaching staffs. They both had in-home visits with my family over in Canada so that showed me how interested they were.”

So far, Missouri and Iowa State are the only two schools to conduct in-home visits with Webster-Chan, with no further in-homes on the horizon.

There were rumors that Webster-Chan had trimmed his list to just those two schools, but he denied those reports.

“Those are just the two schools at the top of my list,” he said.

Webster-Chan is planning an official visit to Clemson “probably next weekend,” while USC, Texas, Oregon State and Marquette are also in pursuit.

Webster-Chan is a 6-foot-7 small forward from Huntington Prep (W.Va.) who uses his length and athleticism to score effectively on drives to the rim. His shooting is getting more consistent, but he needs to add weight and bulk in order to better absorb contact on his finishes. Webster-Chan is also a capable passer and an aggressive defender.

Posted on: August 22, 2011 10:49 am
 

Recruiting picks up for Torren Jones

By Jeff Borzello

Since the end of his high school season, Torren Jones made an effort to expand his game. Instead of being just a run and jump big man who scored in transition, Jones began to make plays on his own.

“I played really well this summer,” Jones said. “I started to use the 15-foot jump shot, along with some more post moves.”

With the development in his game, recruiting has also picked up for the 6-foot-8 power forward from Basha (Ariz.). Jones said Florida State, West Virginia, Georgetown, San Jose State and Kansas have started to show interest after his play with California Supreme during the summer.

Moreover, he currently holds offers from Arizona and Colorado, with interest coming from Oregon State, Washington State, UCLA, USC, Iowa State and DePaul.

“The process is going great,” Jones said.

He did say Arizona, UCLA, USC, Kansas and Iowa State were the five schools currently standing out. UCLA and USC are the two he’s visited the most due to playing with Cal Supreme on the AAU circuit.

“I’m looking for good academics, style of play and location,” Jones said.

Being from Arizona and playing with a California-based travel team, he is more interested in West Coast teams. However, he’s not afraid to go away for school, either.

“I would like to stay close to home,” Jones said. “But if a good East Coast school offers, I will go there.”

Despite the recent uptick in recruiting, Jones – ranked No. 81 in CBSSports.com’s Top 100 for 2013 – is in no hurry to make a decision.

“I am going to hold out until my senior year,” he said. “Make sure I make the right choice.”

Photo: Five-Star Basketball

Posted on: August 3, 2011 5:05 pm
Edited on: August 3, 2011 5:07 pm
 

Zena Edosomwan's focus turns towards recruiting

By Jeff Borzello

Zena Edosomwan was one of the fastest-rising players on the spring and summer AAU circuit.

Despite the attention it has brought him, Edosomwan is glad that the grind is finally over.

“I’m just happy I’m done with AAU because it’s crazy,” he said. “You play so many games in such a short period.”

Edosomwan, a 6-foot-7 power forward from Harvard-Westlake (Calif.), made an impression in the spring and then solidified his standing by holding his own against the cream of the crop. He runs the floor well and is excellent at finishing in transition. Edosomwan is willing to do the dirty work in the paint, but is athletic and skilled enough to make plays on the glass and above the rim.

The next step for him will be recruiting, which has heated up in a major way lately.

“It’s going really well,” Edosomwan said. “I just have to cut down my list soon.”

He picked up offers in the past couple of days from UNLV, California and Wake Forest, adding to a collection that also includes Harvard, Georgia Tech, Washington State, USC, Colorado, Utah, Oregon, Maryland, Gonzaga and Arizona State. Edosomwan, who ranks No. 68 in CBSSports.com's Top 100 and also holds a 3.4 GPA, has strong interest from UCLA, Texas, Vanderbilt, Washington and Virginia Tech.

While Edosomwan has taken visits to UCLA and USC, he is not ready to make a decision about his future just yet.

“I’m going to enjoy the visits and the whole process,” he said.

Edosomwan has certainly earned a break.

Photo: LA Daily News

Posted on: August 1, 2011 2:49 pm
 

Javonte Hawkins backs up top-100 ranking

By Jeff Borzello

One of the last players in the pre-July CBSSports.com Top 100 rankings was Javonte Hawkins, a 6-foot-5 wing from Powers Catholic (Mich.).

After his performance with the Michigan Mustangs on the AAU circuit, though, it’s clear Hawkins isn’t content with his standing.

“I want to show that I’m a player,” he said. “I wanted to come out and play defense. I can shoot, I can get to the hole.”

More on Recruiting

Hawkins is a big-time athlete who uses his length and leaping ability to make plays off the bounce and in transition. He can knock down 3-pointers with consistency, and is not afraid to elevate in traffic around the goal. Defensively, he is aggressive and looks to force turnovers.

Michigan, Cincinnati, USC, Miami (Fl.), South Florida, Iowa, Iowa State, West Virginia, Marquette, Colorado and Providence are all showing interest in the Flint, Mich. product.

Hawkins said Iowa, Iowa State, West Virginia, Colorado and Marquette are showing the most interest at this point.

“A place that likes to run,” he said when asked what he is looking for in a school. “A team that plays hard, plays defense and runs the floor.”

His mindset is certainly that of a top-100 player; after July, he has the game to back it up. 

Posted on: July 23, 2011 9:04 pm
 

Ikenna Iroegbu hopes to join Oak Hill greats

By Jeff Borzello

LAS VEGAS – Oak Hill Academy (Va.) has been a point guard factory throughout its history, producing the likes of Nolan Smith, Quinn Cook, Rajon Rondo, Ty Lawson, Brandon Jennings and Steve Blake in recent years. The lineage goes all the way back to Rod Strickland, who spent 17 seasons in the NBA.

Ikenna Iroegbu hopes to be the next stud lead guard for the Warriors.

“I just wanted to play on the national stage, get more looks,” Iroegbu said. “They’ve produced a lot of good point guards, and I want to join the history.”

More on Recruiting

Iroegbu, a 6-foot-1 junior from California, certainly has the talent and potential to be a factor when he arrives in Virginia, currently ranking No. 66 in CBSSports.com's Top 100. He is extremely fast with the ball, and has the quickness to beat defenders off the dribble. Iroegbu knows how to finish in the lane and can also knock down jumpers. 

While he has some of the tools necessary to be a big-time player, there are some areas he needs to improve.

“I could handle the ball better, take care of the ball better,” Iroegbu said. “I need to step it up.

“I want to show everyone that I’m a good player and one of the best point guards in my class. I think I stack up well, but I could do better.”

Currently, he holds offers from Arizona, USC, Colorado, Oklahoma State and Washington State, with interest coming from Virginia Tech and most of the Pac-12. Iroegbu said Washington State and USC are coming at him the hardest.

He wants to play in a fast-paced offense where his speed and ability to push the ball in transition will be a huge asset.

“I’m also looking at how the coaching staff treats the players,” Iroegbu said.

If he stands out at Oak Hill as the next great point guard, though, one can only assume he will be a favorite amongst the coaches at whichever school he chooses.

Posted on: June 28, 2011 12:55 pm
Edited on: June 28, 2011 1:21 pm
 

Danuel House's school list goes from 2 to 35

TEAMS INTERESTED:

By Jeff Borzello

Before the Best Buy Classic in Chicago over Memorial Day Weekend, Danuel House was hearing from two schools, TCU and Jacksonville.

After a breakout performance in the Windy City, House has seen his stock skyrocket.

“It was at two, then 32, now 35,” he said. “It’s still new to me.”

House, a 6-foot-6 small forward from Elkins, Texas, has offers from Louisville, Baylor, Texas, California, Colorado, USC, Houston and, yes, TCU and Jacksonville. Arizona, North Carolina, South Carolina, Missouri, Kansas, Maryland, Florida State, South Florida, Gonzaga and Providence have also reached out to the rising senior.

“It’s good exercise for the brain,” said House, referring to rattling off his long list of suitors. “It’s fun.”

House is a terrific athlete who is at his best when driving to the basket and finishing at the rim. He is great in transition and also handles the ball fairly well. His outside shot needs work, but he does have the ability to knock down 3-pointers. With his length and athleticism, he is a solid defender.

It doesn’t take long to see his potential, which makes it even more surprising that it took so long for House to burst onto the scene.

“People were seeing me for the first time,” he said.

Playing alongside Isaiah Austin on Texas Pro, don’t expect House's stock to collapse anytime soon.

Posted on: June 21, 2011 7:29 pm
 

Zena Edosomwan excels on and off the court

INTERESTED TEAMS:



By Jeff Borzello

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – It doesn’t take long to notice Zena Edosomwan is not your average high school basketball recruit.

First, he attends Harvard-Westlake (Calif.), a high school that two people have said has the most rigid academic standards “west of the Mississippi.” He holds a 3.4 GPA at that school and has nearly every Ivy League school on his tail.

Then, Edosomwan begins speaking. Aside from the fact he is one of the more well-spoken recruits in the country, his mindset is different than most top-100 recruits.

“People say college is not a four-year decision, it’s a 40-year decision,” Edosomwan said. “That’s how it is for me.”

Yes, a 40-year decision. Not one year and the NBA, not two years and then go pro – 40 years.

With the way he has been playing, though, basketball could certainly be in Edosomwan’s future.

“I worked a lot harder, was focused on getting better,” he said. “I started becoming more competitive.”

At the NBPA Top 100 camp in Virginia last week, the 6-foot-7 power forward more than held his own against higher-rated players. Edosomwan runs the floor exceptionally well and knows how to finish in transition. He has good hands and uses his length and athleticism to make plays above the rim. Given his strong frame, Edosomwan also has the ability to get position in the paint and score.

He went into the camp with the goal of hanging with the top of the class.

“I want to show I can compete with the best players,” Edosomwan said. “It’s the perfect place to do that, with players that are taller and more athletic than me.”

More and more colleges are beginning to notice the student-athlete on the court, as Edosomwan mentioned Harvard, Georgia Tech, Washington, Washington State, UCLA, USC and Virginia Tech.

He took an unofficial visit to UCLA last Monday.

“It was great,” Edosomwan said. “The tradition there is unbelievable, with [John] Wooden and everything he did.”

There doesn’t seem to be much of a timetable for his decision – Edosomwan is focused on his game.

“I just want to keep getting better,” he said. “It’s my time to prove that I can play.”

Photo: Harvard-Westlake

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