Perhaps no other player in the country has boosted his stock as much as Jason Cain, a mobile and athletic 6-9, 200 pound combo forward from John Bartram H.S. in Philadelphia, Penn.
Cain scored 16 points last weekend as Bartram upended Chester H.S. at the Scholastic Play by Play Classic at Franklin H.S. in Philly.
Following the game, Rivalshoops.com spoke with Bartram Head Coach Lou Biester, and he gave us his thoughts on why Cain is receiving such heavy attention this winter.
RH: The thing that struck us about Jason's play tonight was his passing. He passes the ball very well for a big man.
LB: When he gets the ball in low, he scores, and then when they start to double him and we start making our cuts, he always finds the cutter. He passes the ball well in transition and can handle it a bit. When he came here his first year, he was 6-0. Now he's 6-9 but he's kept his guard game. When we go into our delay game, we have him handle the ball because his defender usually can't stay with him. He's very comfortable with the basketball.
RH: He's really more of a combo forward than a power forward.
LB: Oh, yes. When he goes to a college, he'll put on 35 pounds and he will be fine. He's a little stronger now, but each game he is so much more comfortable playing and gets better every time. I thought he played a great game tonight.
RH: He plays very hard and is so quick to the spot on the floor. He beats defenders to the spot.
LB: He passes the ball, he rebounds the ball, he outlets the ball. He alters shots.
RH: Out of the list of schools, who would you say has offered scholarships?
LB: Penn State, St. Bonaventure and UNC-Greensboro have offered. Villanova sends faxes every day, so they're after him pretty good, but they haven't offered. Rutgers, Seton Hall, Georgia Tech and Virginia have been in contact. Virginia wants him to come down for a game.
RH: Jason also mentioned Indiana, Charlotte, Utah and Temple.
LB: Utah was at his game and they were impressed. Indiana, the coach who came out here wants Mike Davis to see him play. I also wonder about some of these schools coming in late. I've told Jason that you want to be around the schools that have been around you the whole time -- they want you. Some of these other schools might want you now because they didn't get somebody.
RH: Can you talk about what makes him such a difficult matchup for other teams?
LB: He's so athletic, he can put the ball on the floor, he has a great spin move, he looks for other people. When he gets the ball, people don't expect him to be as agile and as fast as he is. And when you add some strength to him, he's going to be a heck of a college player down the road. He can even stick the three. When he came here, I told him he wasn't going to be my center. He's been at Bartram for three years. He started out at West Catholic but didn't play there?
RH: Do you think he will take all five official visits? He's already used up two, one to UNC-Greensboro and another to Penn State.
LB: I think he will. I want him to, I want him to experience what's out there and then make an intelligent decision.
RH: Can you touch real briefly on Indiana's interest in Jason?
LB: They heard a lot about him from different sources. They came to the Gratz game (1/31/03) and they loved how he played. He had 23 points, nine rebounds and six blocks and a lot of alters. He ran the floor. He did it all. He said that Jason fits their kind of system. Facing the basket, going inside and outside, the whole bit. The coach [from IU] left here pretty excited. It's just a matter of Coach Davis seeing him.