Already blessed with a man sized body, 2007 prospect Wendell McKines put up enormous numbers as a freshman at Richmond (Calif.) High School, averaging a healthy double-double. McKines, a 6-foot-5, 215-pound power forward, is at it again this year, stuffing the stat sheet for his 4-3 Richmond team, and a number of high-majors are closely watching his development.
"Wendell is hearing from Oregon, Washington State, Arizona State, Nebraska, Missouri and California," said McKines' AAU coach Carl Foster of the Oakland Slam N Jam (Soldiers). "As a freshman, Wendell averaged 25 points and 17 rebounds. He led his team to the playoffs for the first time in three years.
"He is a man. In his first game this year he had 39 points and 29 rebounds while missing 10 free throws. He's built like Larry Johnson. Wendell is a good athlete. He has the best jump hook in the country. Wendell just finds ways to put the ball in the basket. He is also a great rebounder."
With a game where he overpowers opponents around the basket, McKines will need to develop his skills with the ball, extend his range and improve his feel for the game to be effective at the next level once the players around him catch up to him physically.
"He's still raw and needs to learn to put the ball on the floor," said Foster. "He's a poor defender, but a great defensive rebounder. His basketball IQ is modest at best."
Despite his rawness as a player, McKines makes up for it with his physical and mental toughness.
"Wendell is a tenacious player," said Foster. "He is super competitive. He does not like losing."
On the season, McKines is averaging 24 points and 19 rebounds per game.