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LBJ Skills Academy recap

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MORE: Class of 2015 Rivals150
LAS VEGAS -- There was no sprint to the finish at the LeBron James Skills Academy on Saturday. It was actually more of a limp as one player after another dropped out to either fatigue or injury, forcing Nike to eliminate some games and move teams around on Saturday. Caleb Swanigan wasn't limping to the finish and neither was Henry Ellenson, even though their team fell in the camp championship game.
Swanigant to cut list in August
By Saturday, campers at the LeBron James Skills Academy were justifiably worn down -- at least those who had competed all the way through - but one of the biggest guys in camp, five-star big man Caleb Swanigan was still going strong.
A wide body with touch and skill, Swanigan kept plugging away through the end of camp and gave coaches exactly what they wanted to see.
"It's not a lot of nerves, you have to play hard," Swanigan told Rivals.com when asked if he was at all nervous playing in front of college coaches. "They don't expect you to dominate every game with scoring or getting every basket. But if you go after every loose ball and be a good teammate, that's what they want to see."
Ever since the 6-foot-9 product of Ft. Wayne (Ind.) Homestead made the decision to reclassify from the class of 2016 to 2015, the general assumption has been that Michigan State is the team to beat. Swanigan acknowledged that he has heard the talk but said that he has no leader and that others like California, Purdue, Indiana, Michigan, Arizona, Duke, UCLA and Texas are in the mix as well.
However, Swanigan will be cutting things down soon enough.
"I'll probably narrow my list down around August," said Swanigan. "Then I'll start weeding my list out and setting up visits so there won't be a lot of wasted time."
Brooks justifying rankings leap with his play
One of the biggest movers in the most recent update to the 2015 Rivals150 was Dillon Brooks. A 6-foot-6 wing from Canada who plays his high school ball at Henderson (Nev.) Findlay Prep, Brooks went from unranked to No. 50 and his climb may not be done.
At LBJ, one would have been hard pressed to find a craftier player. While Brooks has good size and strength, he's not a crazy athlete or flashy ball handler but man oh man does he recognize matchups and the best way to exploit them. He can make jumpers from deep, he is very clever around the bucket and he plays hard on both ends of the floor.
Coaches who aren't even recruiting him were nodding in approval of his style and things should start to pick up for him. According to Brooks, he would like to cut his list down to five sometime after next week's Peach Jam in Georgia and some of the schools under consideration are Iowa State, Michigan, Michigan State, Rhode Island, Houston, UNLV, Syracuse, Kansas State and Providence.
More Saturday notes and notables
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Wisconsin forward Henry EllensonClick There wasn't a single player at LBJ who raised his stock in the eyes of Rivals.com as much as Huntington (W.V.) Prep power forward Ted KapitaClick Omari SpellmanClick Here to view this Link. is a top 30 prospect in the class of 2016 and at the rate he's going he could be moving up a little more at the end of the summer. The power forward still has some baby fat to shed, but he is a surprisingly quick and explosive leaper (especially on his second jump) who can play above the rim when he needs to and he is a legitimate threat as a three-point shooter. College coaches have certainly caught on and Spellman listed offers from FloridaClick Here to view this Link., PittsburghClick Here to view this Link., Seton HallClick Here to view this Link., Wake ForestClick Here to view this Link., Virginia TechClick Here to view this Link., MiamiClick Here to view this Link., DaytonClick Here to view this Link., IowaClick Here to view this Link., IndianaClick Here to view this Link., West VirginiaClick Here to view this Link., Manhattan, CincinnatiClick Here to view this Link., UNLV, Northern Kentucky, Cleveland State, Detroit, Ohio and RutgersClick Here to view this Link.. They haven't offered yet, but Spellman mentioned KansasClick Here to view this Link. and Ohio StateClick Here to view this Link. as two programs picking up its attention level.Here to view this Link.. After showing off his ability to maul people physically on Friday, Kapita flashed his skill on Saturday. He faced up defenders and hit some 18 foot jump shots. A native of The Congo who arrived in the U.S. in 2012, Kapita has early offers from ArkansasClick Omari SpellmanClick Here to view this Link. is a top 30 prospect in the class of 2016 and at the rate he's going he could be moving up a little more at the end of the summer. The power forward still has some baby fat to shed, but he is a surprisingly quick and explosive leaper (especially on his second jump) who can play above the rim when he needs to and he is a legitimate threat as a three-point shooter. College coaches have certainly caught on and Spellman listed offers from FloridaClick Here to view this Link., PittsburghClick Here to view this Link., Seton HallClick Here to view this Link., Wake ForestClick Here to view this Link., Virginia TechClick Here to view this Link., MiamiClick Here to view this Link., DaytonClick Here to view this Link., IowaClick Here to view this Link., IndianaClick Here to view this Link., West VirginiaClick Here to view this Link., Manhattan, CincinnatiClick Here to view this Link., UNLV, Northern Kentucky, Cleveland State, Detroit, Ohio and RutgersClick Here to view this Link.. They haven't offered yet, but Spellman mentioned KansasClick Here to view this Link. and Ohio StateClick Here to view this Link. as two programs picking up its attention level.Here to view this Link., ConnecticutClick Omari SpellmanClick Here to view this Link. is a top 30 prospect in the class of 2016 and at the rate he's going he could be moving up a little more at the end of the summer. The power forward still has some baby fat to shed, but he is a surprisingly quick and explosive leaper (especially on his second jump) who can play above the rim when he needs to and he is a legitimate threat as a three-point shooter. College coaches have certainly caught on and Spellman listed offers from FloridaClick Here to view this Link., PittsburghClick Here to view this Link., Seton HallClick Here to view this Link., Wake ForestClick Here to view this Link., Virginia TechClick Here to view this Link., MiamiClick Here to view this Link., DaytonClick Here to view this Link., IowaClick Here to view this Link., IndianaClick Here to view this Link., West VirginiaClick Here to view this Link., Manhattan, CincinnatiClick Here to view this Link., UNLV, Northern Kentucky, Cleveland State, Detroit, Ohio and RutgersClick Here to view this Link.. They haven't offered yet, but Spellman mentioned KansasClick Here to view this Link. and Ohio StateClick Here to view this Link. as two programs picking up its attention level.Here to view this Link., Miami, Florida, Texas and Kansas State to go along with interest from MissouriClick Omari SpellmanClick Here to view this Link. is a top 30 prospect in the class of 2016 and at the rate he's going he could be moving up a little more at the end of the summer. The power forward still has some baby fat to shed, but he is a surprisingly quick and explosive leaper (especially on his second jump) who can play above the rim when he needs to and he is a legitimate threat as a three-point shooter. College coaches have certainly caught on and Spellman listed offers from FloridaClick Here to view this Link., PittsburghClick Here to view this Link., Seton HallClick Here to view this Link., Wake ForestClick Here to view this Link., Virginia TechClick Here to view this Link., MiamiClick Here to view this Link., DaytonClick Here to view this Link., IowaClick Here to view this Link., IndianaClick Here to view this Link., West VirginiaClick Here to view this Link., Manhattan, CincinnatiClick Here to view this Link., UNLV, Northern Kentucky, Cleveland State, Detroit, Ohio and RutgersClick Here to view this Link.. They haven't offered yet, but Spellman mentioned KansasClick Here to view this Link. and Ohio StateClick Here to view this Link. as two programs picking up its attention level.Here to view this Link. and Kansas. Currently ranked No. 74 in the 2015 Rivals150, Kapita looks like a potential five-star prospect.Here to view this Link. has already climbed into 2015's top 20 and earned five-star status. At No. 17 overall, though, it is possible that he may still be a little bit under ranked. Nobody at camp showed deeper range on their jump shot and he was quite comfortable from behind the NBA line. In the past, the biggest quibble with his game has been that Ellenson settles a little too easily for the deep jumper. On Friday and Saturday at LBJ, Ellenson showed much more off the dribble and was quite active around the rim.
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Finally, the competition amongst big men to land spots in the 2015 McDonald's All-American game is going to be pretty fierce. At least in the eyes of Rivals.com, Deyonta DavisClick Not that a top 10 player has much to figure out, but Malik MonkClick Playing in front of future head coach John CalipariClick Looking at things now, not including point guard Xavier SimpsonClick Count the trip to Vegas as a good one for class of 2016 five-star wing V.J. KingClick In fact, Ellenson looked so good off the dribble that you have to wonder if he might not be able to play full time on the wing sometime in the next few years. He certainly has the speed and skill to do so, the question is if he can hang with the smaller and quicker athletes he would be matched up with. His older brother recently transferred to Marquette and that has set off a flurry of rumors indicating that he will follow, but Ellenson wouldn't tip his hand.Here to view this Link.. The 6-foot-7 small forward had some bounce in his step, was swishing one and two dribble pull-up jumpers and spent more time playing above the rim than ever before.Here to view this Link. in the expanded 2016 rankings was a mistake. The sub six-footer isn't the biggest guy around, but he has a tremendous feel for finding teammates off the dribble, has savvy beyond his years and is a tough customer. Book him in the next 2016 rankings update.Here to view this Link., four-star shooting guard Charles MatthewsClick Looking at things now, not including point guard Xavier SimpsonClick Count the trip to Vegas as a good one for class of 2016 five-star wing V.J. KingClick In fact, Ellenson looked so good off the dribble that you have to wonder if he might not be able to play full time on the wing sometime in the next few years. He certainly has the speed and skill to do so, the question is if he can hang with the smaller and quicker athletes he would be matched up with. His older brother recently transferred to Marquette and that has set off a flurry of rumors indicating that he will follow, but Ellenson wouldn't tip his hand.Here to view this Link.. The 6-foot-7 small forward had some bounce in his step, was swishing one and two dribble pull-up jumpers and spent more time playing above the rim than ever before.Here to view this Link. in the expanded 2016 rankings was a mistake. The sub six-footer isn't the biggest guy around, but he has a tremendous feel for finding teammates off the dribble, has savvy beyond his years and is a tough customer. Book him in the next 2016 rankings update.Here to view this Link. played as well as he has in some time. Long and athletic, he focused on what he does best and that's attacking the rim. When he is in attack mode, Matthews is reminiscent of Will Barton in his high school days. A few times he struggled with finishes that will become automatic with improved strength and work on his left hand.Here to view this Link. is really figuring it out. The No. 6 player in the class of 2016 has found a perfect blend between his jump shooting and attacking the rim making him nearly unstoppable. Because he isn't quite ideal height for an NBA shooting guard there is a chance that he sticks around college for a few years when he gets there. But, let's not get too far ahead of ourselves and simply say that Monk has all the tools to be a big time scorer as when he arrives on a college campus two years from now.Here to view this Link. merits serious consideration for that honor. He is a winner with his high school team in Muskegon, Mich, and he more than holds his own with the nation's elite players. The 6-foot-9 power forward was all over the place on Saturday playing above the rim on both ends of the floor and sticking mid range jumpers when he had the chance. He is still a bit on the skinny side but is there anybody who thinks he won't get turned into a beast in Michigan StateClick Not that a top 10 player has much to figure out, but Malik MonkClick Playing in front of future head coach John CalipariClick Looking at things now, not including point guard Xavier SimpsonClick Count the trip to Vegas as a good one for class of 2016 five-star wing V.J. KingClick In fact, Ellenson looked so good off the dribble that you have to wonder if he might not be able to play full time on the wing sometime in the next few years. He certainly has the speed and skill to do so, the question is if he can hang with the smaller and quicker athletes he would be matched up with. His older brother recently transferred to Marquette and that has set off a flurry of rumors indicating that he will follow, but Ellenson wouldn't tip his hand.Here to view this Link.. The 6-foot-7 small forward had some bounce in his step, was swishing one and two dribble pull-up jumpers and spent more time playing above the rim than ever before.Here to view this Link. in the expanded 2016 rankings was a mistake. The sub six-footer isn't the biggest guy around, but he has a tremendous feel for finding teammates off the dribble, has savvy beyond his years and is a tough customer. Book him in the next 2016 rankings update.Here to view this Link., four-star shooting guard Charles MatthewsClick Looking at things now, not including point guard Xavier SimpsonClick Count the trip to Vegas as a good one for class of 2016 five-star wing V.J. KingClick In fact, Ellenson looked so good off the dribble that you have to wonder if he might not be able to play full time on the wing sometime in the next few years. He certainly has the speed and skill to do so, the question is if he can hang with the smaller and quicker athletes he would be matched up with. His older brother recently transferred to Marquette and that has set off a flurry of rumors indicating that he will follow, but Ellenson wouldn't tip his hand.Here to view this Link.. The 6-foot-7 small forward had some bounce in his step, was swishing one and two dribble pull-up jumpers and spent more time playing above the rim than ever before.Here to view this Link. in the expanded 2016 rankings was a mistake. The sub six-footer isn't the biggest guy around, but he has a tremendous feel for finding teammates off the dribble, has savvy beyond his years and is a tough customer. Book him in the next 2016 rankings update.Here to view this Link. played as well as he has in some time. Long and athletic, he focused on what he does best and that's attacking the rim. When he is in attack mode, Matthews is reminiscent of Will Barton in his high school days. A few times he struggled with finishes that will become automatic with improved strength and work on his left hand.Here to view this Link. is really figuring it out. The No. 6 player in the class of 2016 has found a perfect blend between his jump shooting and attacking the rim making him nearly unstoppable. Because he isn't quite ideal height for an NBA shooting guard there is a chance that he sticks around college for a few years when he gets there. But, let's not get too far ahead of ourselves and simply say that Monk has all the tools to be a big time scorer as when he arrives on a college campus two years from now.Here to view this Link.'s weight room?
Eric Bossi is the national basketball recruiting analyst for Rivals.com. You can click here to follow him on Twitter.
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