There was a big turnout for the high school basketball showcase at Northern Guilford on Saturday afternoon/evening. College coaches were able to check out the area talent with games going in two different gymnasiums. Jerry Eaves from NC A&T, Tom Palumbo of Guilford College, Ernie Nestor from Elon U., Houston Fancher from Appalachian State, plus assistant coaches from UNCG, High Point University, and many other schools were on hand.
They had two games going on in different gyms at Northern but in the main gym they were keeping score and in the auxillary gym they did not keep score. It was a full court game and the games lasted 20 minutes each and the clock ran non-stop so as soon as you finished one game you could be on your way to another. They had a couple of officials but as far as calls go you were pretty much on your own and the games were moving at a steady pace and often times resembled an outdoor pick-up game. The most important thing was the college coaches were able to make their notes and they saw a ton of talent and it was FREE for everyone.
Coach K, Stan Kowalewski of NG, was running the basketball showcase along with former Smith and NEG coach Reggie Peace.(Peace also coached at SEG) As far as players go, I saw Luqman Tijani of Page, David Dupont from Grimsley, JB Beloved Grimsley, Julius Brooks Page, Samuel PJ Hairston Dudley, Keith Manley Grimsley, Jordan Weethe Page, Carter Gourley Grimsley, Jay Canty and Wally Jones Ragsdale, Javan Mitchell Greensboro Day, plus Jonathan Frye, Jacob Lawson, Dylan Berry, Michael Neal, Asad Lamont, and JR Grant all from Northern Guilford.
If I counted my numbers correctly, there 110 players at Northern Guilford for the Showcase. This would have to be considered a huge success and if a kid like David Dupont gets a chance to play college ball because of it then more power to the showcase. I saw Dupont talking to Coach Tom Palumbo from Guilford College. Could David go to Guilford and play both soccer and basketball? I say, why not? Dupont was an All-State soccer player who has been selected to play in the East-West All-Star soccer game and I hear that he wants to play college basketball now but earlier he was just going to go to college and do college, and NO SPORTS….. A Charleston Southern or a USC Upstate might be in on the basketball hunt for Dupont now, but with Saturday’s Showcase he has a chance to be seen by a number of college coaches.
Brandon Clifford the assistant basketball at Page told me he was there at Northern on Saturday to try and help Luqman Tijani get a ride to college somewhere. Tijani was late bloomer and he was drawing some attention at the beginning of his senior year but the college coaches cooled off toward the tail end of Tijani’s senior season. All of the seniors that don’t have a college lined up yet are looking for a lift like Beloved and several others, while guys like Brooks and Manley hope to hit the jackpot with a schloarship offer coming their way before their senior season. Samuel PJ Hairston has been on everyone’s radar since he put on a Dudley Panther varsity uniform and Frye will be one of the best players in the state before he graduates from Northern Guilford. I heard that Wake Forest was after Javan Mitchell back during his junior year at GDS and I sat beside a coach from USC-Upstate that was watching Mitchell in the Calvary Baptist-GDS game at GDS.
We have some real good talent around here and Coach K did a good job with the Showcase display that had people talking and looking, out at Northern Guilford on Saturday……