ATLANTA, Ga. -- The big games won't happen until tomorrow at the Wallace Prather Memorial Classic but there was still a handful of games to see on Friday night at Georgia Tech.
Few games, plenty of recruiting news
Memphis based Team Chaos rolled into Atlanta amidst a flash flood and Friday afternoon traffic in Atlanta and took to the court for a game shortly after arriving into town. After shaking off the dust, the club picked up a hard fought win against the Crush All-Stars.
However, the big news comes on the heels of a commitment. 2008 point guard Eric Buggs verbally committed to Valparaiso. The speedster got the rim any time he wanted in the opening night victory. He said he felt a connection with Homer Drew and his staff.
"They said I fit perfectly with their system," Buggs said. "They said they wanted to use me in transition on offense and then work their press on defense. That made a lot of sense with the way I play. Plus, it's a great academic situation for me."
His teammates – Terrico White and Jarvis Jones – both hold offers from Valpo. The trio visited the campus last week together.
White, a bouncy 6-foot-4 guard, said he also has an offer from Ole Miss while Clemson, Tennessee, Memphis and UTEP are involved. Jones, a 6-foot-1 shooter, has interest from UAB, Austin Peay, Murray State and Ole Miss. Both will have a decision by the end of July.
Worldwide players seeing recruitment heat up
Teondre Williams, one of the most athletic players in the country, said he picked up a couple of new offers this spring. The latest came from Illinois, Clemson and Wake Forest. The trio joins Georgia and Cincinnati as those that have stepped up with a free ride while Texas, Alabama and Tennessee are heavily recruiting him, he said. The Meadowcreek High School product said he has tentative plans to visit Cincinnati next month.
Sophomore guard Lorenzo Brown said he has offers from Oregon and Georgia while Ohio State, UConn and Virginia Tech are very much in the picture with the 6-foot-3 combo guard from Centennial High School in Alpharetta, Ga.
Ari Stewart, another sophomore with Worldwide Renegades, has enjoyed a big spring. The 6-foot-7 forward has earned high-major interest with his athletic play and improved perimeter game. The Wheeler High School prospect has interest from the likes of Xavier, Michigan, Florida State, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Tennessee Tech, UCLA, Texas, Wake Forest and NC State. Stewart made a number of big plays in the second half to help his squad pick up a hard fought victory.
Big man Jeremy Olsen, a 6-foot-8 sophomore forward from Collins Hill High School, has seen BYU, Utah, Clemson, Xavier, Auburn, Georgia, Ole Miss all roll in to see him this year. The 4.0 student has unofficially visited Texas.
More recruiting scoop
Andre Young, a 5-foot-8 point guard for the Georgia Blazers has four offers: Wofford, Tennessee Tech, Mercer and Colgate. Teammate Kelvin Martin of Cook Co. High School, said he has offers from Middle Tennessee State and Army while Jacksonville, Tennessee Tech and Wofford are interested.
DeAndre Johnson may be small but his shots were big. The 5-foot-7 guard drilled five three-pointers in the first half. His hot hand helped crack open the game against the North Georgia Heat.
Zuri James, a 6-foot-3 guard from Pace Academy in Atlanta, will be a very intriguing guard prospect in the class of 2008 for the mid-majors. For starters, he's a great student. On the court, he's improving his ability to put the ball on the court and attack with the dribble against the Georgia Blazers.
Workhorse Murphy Holloway earned every droplet of sweat on his 6-foot-6, 220-pound frame en route to a workmanlike 22 points. The Dutch Fork High School/South Carolina Ravens prospect said he is hearing from Florida, Clemson, Tennessee, Auburn and South Carolina the most.
Manny Atkins, a sharp-shooting wing for the Atlanta Celtics/Tucker High School, said he is hearing from Georgia, Georgia Tech, Auburn, Memphis, Florida State, Alabama, Wofford and South Carolina. Atkins said he has a visit to Alabama in the works while trips to Georgia Tech and Georgia are being set up.
Gideon Gamble, a long and lanky wing from the Celtics/Atlanta Westlake, said he is hearing from Miami, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Maryland, South Carolina and has offers from Toledo and Tennessee Tech. Gamble added he will be visiting South Carolina in June. He recently returned home from Toledo for a visit.
Playing without Cincinnati commitment Darnell Wilks, Southeast Elite leaned on the blue collar effort from Romero Osby. The 6-foot-8 forward got it done inside the paint and didn't face much of a challenge in a 20-point win the night cap.
The 1-2 punch of Courtney Fortson and Varez Ward did their normal damage. Fortson, a 5-foot-11 spring board, played well above the rim all night long. Ward hit shots from the perimeter as the team coasted to a victory.
Recruiting news and notes from around the country
Word came to us tonight about a couple of players not at the Prather Memorial.
According to Mike Mullins of the Illinois Wolves, Northwestern landed forward John Shurna. The 6-foot-7 Chicago area big man is a nice catch for the in-state Big Ten program.
According to sources close to the situation, West Virginia is on the brink of landing 2007 big man Sean Carter of Laurinburg. The 6-foot-9 center visited the Big East school last week.