CHERRY HILL, NEW JERSEY -- Mustafa Shakur, the very talented 6-3, 175 pound point guard from Philadelphia's Friends Central High School, had just finished playing in the finale of Rick Barrett's Annual Gym Rat Midnight Madness. Shakur had been named co-MVP, along with junior Joshua Smith, in his squad's 122-106 win. But he wasn't very happy.
"I really didn't play that well," he said. He had 23 points, eight assists and seven rebounds in the contest.
This really was not a faint boast. Shakur was displeased. One play stood out; a break where he was fed the ball and missed a dunk attempt. Course there were other plays that were memorable, such as his clean passing and his scoring from inside and outside. And the next time he was given the ball in a similar situation as the missed dunk, he calmly made a layup.
Shakur was able to make this event since he had cancelled the scheduled official visit to Virginia for this weekend. "I'm going to choose between Arizona and NC State," he said.
Mustafa visited the PAC-10 school last weekend and will have his second official visit at NC State next weekend. "I had an unofficial visit there," he said. "But seeing the campus isn't really what I need in order to make a decision."
"They're both good schools," he added. "It's going to be a tough decision."
Shakur said he'll probably announce his choice within the first two weeks of October. "It'll be where I feel the most comfortable," he said. "Especially with the players."
This young man, who earlier told RivalsHoops.com reporter Russ Blake that he achieved a qualifying SAT score, makes those on the court better. That was evident at this past June's NBPA camp. He has all the tools and a huge heart. "I'll probably major in business management," he added.
"I've been working to increase my strength," Shakur said. "May not look it but I've gained five pounds since the beginning of the summer."
Last season Friends Central won the Friends League championship. With this top player, number 28 on RivalsHoops.com's top players in the class of 2003, that, and more, will not be a surprise.
Thanks to Jay Gomes of our affiliate NJHoops for the stats. For the complete box score, please click here.