Rick Lewis with The Phenom Hoop Report and a great quote from Lou Holtz

Posted by Andy Durham on January 2, 2012 at 9:36 pm under High School | Comments are off for this article

The Phenom Hoop Report……Courtesy of Rick Lewis……Check out some of these kids and you’ll know/recognize quite a few of them…..Kennedy Meeks and several of his West Charlotte teammates are featured today, along with Will Weeks from Christ School, plus Josh Newkirk and many others are In today’s Phenom Hoop Report with Rick Lewis…….

Scouting Report: Monday, January 2nd, 2012

Event: Les Schwab Invitational: Championship & Chick-Fil-A Tournament Part 1

Twitter: @Coach_Rick57

Phenom Quote of the Day: “You’re never as good as everyone tells you when
you win, and you’re never as bad as they say when you lose.” Lou Holtz

Phenom Hoop Report Philosophy: “Balanced, thorough and detailed evaluations
based upon the 3 P’s philosophy of Performance, Production, and Potential”

In today’s issue, we will take a closer look at players that participated in
the Chick-Fil-A Tournament held December 20-23rd in Columbia, South Carolina
and then in the Les Schwab Invitational held in Portland, Oregon December
26-30th. While the Phenom Hoop Report philosophy has been “Balanced,
thorough, and detailed evaluations based upon the 3 P’s philosophy of
Performance, Production, and Potential,” we have intentionally put more
emphasis on production and performance. “If potential never translates into
performance and production, then “potential” is worthless.” Unfortunately,
in today’s media the word “potential” is the most overused word in the
scouting business. In addition, not enough emphasis in recruiting is placed
on winning! Do you win and make your team better relative to the overall
talent level. Under achievers usually stay that way at the next level, the
same can be said for those that maximize their talent to make their team
better. Simply put, winning guys don’t change! Too often today, we have
talented players that simply don’t know how to win. They are caught up in
the individual scoring and accolades, but don’t put enough emphasis and
effort into winning. It’s easy to find the players that have the will to
win. Not only do they play to win, but they make their team better. (What a
novel idea!) At this time of year, you can throw out the words of “hype”
and “potential” and showcase words like “performance, productivity, heart,
and the ability to lead your team to victory.” You see, “to get something
you never had, you have to do something you never did.”

Player: 6’2 Marcus Stroman

School: W.J. Keenan

City: Columbia, SC

Class: 2014

Committed: Uncommitted

Evaluation: Stroman is one of the top players in the state of South Carolina
in the class of 2014. He is a long, slender and athletic PG. He is super
quick and he is exceptional at getting into the lane. Stroman has above
average passing abilities and passes well off the dribble, using either
hand. He has all the physical attributes to be a high major PG. Currently,
his 3 point shot is more of a set shot, but has good lift and elevation on
his mid range pull up jumper. Look for Stroman to become a nationally known
recruit by this summer.

Player: 6’6 McKay Anderson

School: LaVerne

City: Laverne, California

Class: 2013

Committed: Uncommitted

Evaluation: Without question, Anderson was one of the best (if not best)
pure shooter at the Chick-Fil-A Tournament in Columbia, SC. The southpaw has
exceptional shooting fundamentals and technique on his picture perfect
jumper. Simply put, Anderson can “shoot the cover” off the basketball. He
has tremendous basketball IQ and the game we watched he poured in 22 points
with 5-7 from the three point line. While he is automatic from a “catch and
shoot” situation, he also demonstrated the ability to catch and shoot in
transition. The next stage in his development is to get bigger and stronger,
but mid major schools that are in search for a shooter should be carefully
monitoring the progress of Anderson this season and throughout this
spring/summer AAU season.

Player: 6’6 Shane Whitfield

School: Word of God

City: Raleigh, NC

Class: 2013 (was originally in 2012 class but reclassed to 2013)

Committed: Uncommitted

Evaluation: In the game we watched against W.J. Keenam, Whitfield was just
tremendous. Whitfield had a game high 29 points going 9-14 from the floor
and a perfect 11-11 from the free throw line. Without the impressive play of
Whitfield, WOG would have easily gone down to defeat to Keenam. Whitfield is
a strong PF that finishes well in transition and runs the floor extremely
well. He is an adequate ball handling for his size/position in the open
court and is an above average passer. He plays extremely hard and gives 100%
effort. Right now, he is a tweeter between a SF and a PF but does have the
ability to play bigger than his 6’6 frame. He has a delicate shooting touch
out to 15 feet and has the ability to knock down free throws with a deadly
accuracy.

Player: 5’10 Jaylan Robertson

School: Word of God

City: Raleigh, NC

Class: 2014

Committed: Uncommitted

Evaluation: Robertson is one of the top players in the 2014 class for the
state of North Carolina and may be one of the better PGs in his class for
the state, if not the best. Robertson has tremendous athleticism and
explosiveness in the open court. He has great leaping ability and doesn’t
mind trying to posterize the opposing player on a transition situation. He
has a moxy about him with confidence that is second to none in his class. He
has exceptional ball handling abilities and has good open court vision.
While Robertson has great speed, one of his strongest attributes is his
ability to change speeds and change of direction. He is really hard to
defend in the open court. He is a very good free throw shooter but rarely
takes many outside shots during the course of the game. Without question, he
has high major speed, quickness and athleticism. In the game we watched, he
handled the majority of the PG responsibilities for WOG.

Player: 6’1 Josh Newkirk

School: Word of God

City: Raleigh, NC

Class: 2013

Committed: Uncommitted

Evaluation: In the one game we watched and kept statistics on, Newkirk
tallied 11 points going 3-9 from the floor and 1-1 from the 3 point line and
4-5 from the free throw line. He had 3 assists to 3 turnovers for the game.
Without question, Newkirk possess blow by speed in the open court and has
little to no trouble getting into the lane. While the knock on Newkirk has
been his outside shooting, he did make the lone 3 pointer for the game and
went a respectable 4-5 from the free throw line. In this game, he missed a
few “bunnies” and didn’t finish as well as he could have. Without question,
Newkirk has the physical intangibles to become a high major PG with his
explosiveness in the open court and tremendous leaping ability. He has good
length and large feet and it looks like he could grow some more even though
he is a reclassed junior. (Originally part of the 2012 class) Newkirk is an
alum of the NC Phenom 150 camp and his development has been fun to watch
over the years. The next step in his development is consistency in his
midrange and outside jumper. That being said, Newkirk has the physical
intangibles high major schools are looking for in a PG.

Player: 6’3 Mike Brown

School: West Charlotte

City: Charlotte, NC

Class: 2012

Committed: Western Carolina

Evaluation: In the Classic II Championship game against Spring Valley, Brown
was simply fantastic. He was the game’s leading scorer with 20 points going
8-14 from the floor (0-2 from the 3 point line) and 4-6 from the free throw
line. More importantly, he has a nose for the basketball and is an old
fashion blue collar worker on the court. He grabbed 10 rebounds and dished
out 4 assists. Like the game we covered in Washington DC, he is sometimes
loose with the basketball as he had 6 turnovers for the game. That being
said, it will be hard to find a tougher competitor on the court than Brown.
He has a high motor and his passion and urgency are found on every play.
Brown was named to the All Tournament team and rightfully so!

Player: Mark Blackmon

School: West Charlotte

City: Charlotte, NC

Class: 2012

Committed: Uncommitted

Evaluation: Blackmon enjoyed a stellar all around performance for the
Chick-Fil-A and his efforts in the previous two games were enough to earn
him All Tournament honors. In the championship game, Blackmon scored 10
points going 2-10 from the floor (2-5 from the 3 point line) and 1-2 from
the free throw line. Blackmon plays the game with an air of confidence and
never allows one bad play to get him down. He is a player that is always
looking to make the next best play for his team and his overall play and
leadership was instrumental in leading West Charlotte to the Classic II
Championship at the Chick-Fil-A Tournament.

Player: 6’8 Kennedy Meeks

School: West Charlotte

City: Charlotte, NC

Class: 2013

Committed: Uncommitted

Evaluation: In the first two games of the Chick-Fil-A, Meeks had a rather
“quiet” game, but plays more to his potential in the championship game. In
the final game against Spring Valley, Meeks enjoyed a double-double of 11
points and 12 rebounds. He went 5-14 from the floor and 1-3 from the free
throw line. He also had 2 assists. While Meeks hasn’t played up to his
potential in the games we have seen so far, it is easy to understand why
major of the big name schools are recruiting him hard. He is a wide body PF
that enjoys extremely soft hands. He is a two handed rebounder and usually
gains possession of the ball once he gets his hands on the ball. Rarely, do
you see Meeks drop or fumble a pass or rebound and without question, Meeks
is one of the best passers in the country for his size/position. The next
step in his development is consistency and playing with a higher motor. He
has the physical attributes and with his size and skill can easily take over
a game at any moment.

Player: 5’11 Devante Brooks

School: Spring Valley

City: Columbia, SC

Class: 2012

Committed: 2012

Evaluation: On paper, Spring Valley was really no match up to West Charlotte
in the Classic II Championship of the Chick-Fil-A Classic, but the play of
Brooks earned his All Tournament honors before his team dropped a 6-57
decision to the eventually champions. Brooks tallied 17 points in the
championship game against West Charlotte going 5-14 from the floor (1-4 from
the 3 point line) and 6-7 from the free throw line. While his numbers may
not look too impressive, it was his leadership and competitiveness that kept
Spring Valley in the game. Brooks plays extremely hard and battles every
possession in a way that is refreshing to watch. While Brooks is a
borderline D1 prospect, he is a true competitor on the court.

Player: 6’8 Will Weeks

School: Christ School

City: Arden, NC

Class: 2012

Committed: Uncommitted

Evaluation: Christ School dropped an opening round game to Word of Game in
overtime and then bounced back to win the consolation championship against
Richland NE of Columbia, SC. Weeks strong play all week earned him All
Tournament team honors and rightfully so. He was a warrior the entire
tournament for Christ School and may be their team MVP. With Weeks, you know
what you are getting every time he steps onto the court and that is effort
and determination. He will battle you for every rebound and loose ball and
is tough as nails down in the paint. He has the size, strength and skill to
become a major contributor at a solid mid major program.


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