One of the best players at the recent Fullcourt Press Easter Classic in Las Vegas was Askia Booker, a 6-foot, 170-pound shooting guard from Los Angeles Price. It's understandable if you haven't heard of him yet because not many people have - including college coaches.
That could soon change.
"He's very explosive and as an off-guard he's a complete player in every respect in the sense that he can really shoot the ball, has range, and is also an excellent driver with good finishing shots," said Booker's AAU coach, Bob Gottlieb of Branch West. "He also really gets after it defensively.
"The only concern is that he's a little bit undersized at his position to be considered a high-major. However, we'll have to see. As he continues to progress, he might just force the issue by being so good that the high-major schools can't ignore him.
"He's about 6-1 and he's a combo. He can also play some point and we're going to try to use him more at the point. If he can show he can handle the point then he has a high-major body."
Booker has all the attributes of a high-major player but it's a tough call at this time because he prefers to play shooting guard even though he's just about 6 feet tall.
He said Montana State has offered him and that he's hearing from Baylor, Portland, San Diego and Virginia but if he continues to play so well on the AAU circuit more programs will be getting involved. Booker is shorter than most shooting guards but he's tough, jumps so well and has a knack for getting to the rim and finishing. His size has not hindered him yet.
If Booker has performances like he did in Vegas, Gottlieb said schools will have no choice but to recruit him because he's just that talented.
"He'll definitely be recruited at the WCC, Big West level," Gottlieb said. "The question is can he play at the Pac-10 level and in my opinion yes but most of them like the off-guards 6-3 or better. He's very strong, fast, jumps extremely well, can drive, can shoot, has a good midrange jumper, he plays hard defensively, he just does a lot of good things.
"At this point nobody really knows about him. I don't think the idea of who's recruiting him has any validity whatsoever. … He's just beginning to establish who he is on the recruiting scene."