basketball Edit

National Hoopfest Friday: Anthony Edwards, elite bigs leave their marks

The ARS Rescue Rooter DC National Hoopfest is the spot to be this weekend as some of the best across the nation descend upon the nation’s capital. Friday evening did not fail to produce sparkling play from the country’s best as Anthony Edwards put on a show, a 1990s battle was recreated by some of 2019’s best, and the future of Boston College and Florida was on display.



Things didn’t begin on a strong note but Anthony Edwards did not fail to excite before it was said and done. The now top-ranked available senior has quickly slid into a highly prioritized recruitment thanks to his recent reclassification but also because of his high-level scoring abilities that was on display Friday.

A long-armed but well-built 6-foot-4 2-guard that boasts a skillset that can overcome any type of defense, Edwards settled a bit too often early on but whenever it was crunch time, he took over. Whether it was off of shifty attack moves, mid-range Js, or accurate passes off of the high ball screen, Edwards got it done.

He finished with 41 points off of 13-of-24 shooting from the floor. A better than average athlete that is becoming more explosive by the day, Edwards’ stock has never been higher. He has already taken an official visit to the hometown Georgia Bulldogs’ program, though Florida State continues to be the program that garners most of the talk. However, this is a more wide-open affair than what others might believe as he told that he will complete official visits to Duke, Florida State, Kansas, and Michigan State in the coming months.

Assistants from Kansas and UCLA were on hand as things are only going to pick up further from here. His game changing abilities are next level where his commitment could catapult a league contender into the national title race for next season.


A contest pitting the local Woodrow Wilson unit and the nationally ranked IMG Academy brigade was one that brought flashbacks to the early 1990s whenever elbows and haymakers were accepted instead of looked down upon.

Maryland bound seniors Makhel Mitchell and Makhi Mitchell brought the pain from the start and their willingness to control the complexion of any given game is evident. Mark Turgeon has become reliant on his duel big men lineups which should only amplify all that the Mitchell brothers can and should do in College Park. Major weapons from the high post on in, neither let anything come easy which gave way to the local bunch keeping things competitive throughout.

Those difficulties were felt by the opposing IMG Academy bunch but Armando Bacot and Jeremiah Robinson-Earl were sure not back down from the challenge. Bacot is the epitome of a showcase big within Roy Williams’ system at UNC and thanks to his refined physique and impeccable hands around the basket, the Tar Heels have a go-to piece at the five.

Robinson-Earl, just like Bacot, has evolved into one of the best half-court weapons in America. He can contribute in more finesse affairs but on Friday, when the post-game ice bath was the only medicine after what all went down, Robinson-Earl was sure to lend a helping hand as he posted 22 points and 14 rebounds. Villanova has a good one in their holster, as do Maryland and UNC, where each showed ready-made tangibles for the college game beginning next fall.


There are point of attack lead guards and then there is Jay Heath. The epitome of a tone setter at the one, Heath is only going to make Boston College that much more of a tougher out within ACC play. He didn’t shoot it great as he missed ten of his 12 attempts but whether it was winning the 50-50 play, setting the floor for his unit or defending the living you know what out of the ball, Heath is a day one dude that Jim Christian will come to rely on quite heavily in

The two-way abilities of Jaden Springer should not go unnoticed. Much younger for his grade level as he could reclassify into the 2021 class and still be younger than those within the sophomore ranks, Springer has stardom written all over him. A capable playmaker that can score, pass and defend, it is that last asset of his game that really stood out on Friday. Springer guards the ball with heavy focus and desire which is difficult to find in high school prospects. He finished with 18 points, eight rebounds, five assists and four steals as he played the part of a top-10 prospect that he truly is.

How many shots Omar Payne changes at the basket. The box score might not always display it but Payne is what you call a rim presence. Thanks to his light of foot nature and superior length where he measured in with a 7-foot-4 wingspan, to go along with more than solid instincts, Payne is the exact remedy for some of Florida’s deficiencies this season. He is tough, active and willing to play to his strengths. Tre Mann and Scottie Lewis may have garnered most of the praise in Florida’s 2019 class but Payne might answer their biggest of needs.

It was nice to see a moderately healthy Moses Moody back on the floor. The top-50 junior has been hurdled by lower leg and foot injuries in recent months but it looks as if he is close to a full bill of health. The physical tangibles that he presents are evident as he is a well-sized shooting guard with length, athleticism and toughness and is more than capable of willing to slide down a position or two on the defensive end. In his team’s win, he finished with 15 points and four assists as he remains a top-target for a bevy of SEC and ACC programs.