basketball Edit

Shaw's Takeaways: Pitt Jam Fest

Rodney Rice
Rodney Rice (Jon Lopez/Nike)

PITTSBURGH - Over 30 courts spread across two stories right in the heart of downtown Pittsburgh were buzzing on Friday. The Hoop Group's Pitt Jam Fest brought together some of the very best talent from across the East Coast together to compete. Rivals.com's Jamie Shaw was on hand for the fireworks. Here is what he saw on night one of the three day extravaganza.

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2021 Rankings: Rivals150 | Team | Position

2022 Rankings: Rivals150 | Team | Position

2023 Rankings: Top 30

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RODNEY RICE HAS FOUR VISITS IN MIND

Class of 2022 four-star prospect Rodney Rice came out scorching the nets in the opening round of the Hoop Group Pitt Jam Fest. His Team Durant EYBL team defeated Team Rio UAA in running clock fashion behind a dazzling 20-point, five three-pointer effort from Rice.

After the game the Hyattsville (Md.) Dematha guard and I talked about his recruitment and he said he wants to visit Louisville, Maryland, Indiana and Virginia Tech once the NCAA opens up in-person recruiting. Rice says he would like to commit prior to his senior season.

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CAM WHITMORE TARGETS A LATE FALL COMMITMENT DATE

Cam Whitmore is a strong and athletic wing who can play above the rim with a mean streak. That ferocity has brought forward 15-plus offers for the 2022 Rivals150 No. 98 prospect. Whitmore's Team Melo squad opened up with a big win over the Wildcats Select 3SSB team on opening night of the Hoop Group Pitt Jam Fest. After the game the Severn (Md.) Archbishop Spalding four-star said that he will be visiting Maryland, Wake Forest and Virginia Tech in June with a late fall target to commit.

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DERIK QUEEN CALLED NEXT

It does not take long to realize Derik Queen has some special qualities about him. Standing 6-foot-8 and 225-pounds, the freshman just does not move like most others on the court. Even playing up in the 16u age group with the Team Thrill UA program, Queen still dominates in a very noticeable fashion. For instance, in this game, the forward finished with14 points in only nine minutes played (it was a blow out). Tracking as one of the top players in the 2024 class the Baltimore (Md.) St. Frances Academy Queen already carries offers from LSU, Georgetown, Maryland, Arizona State and Virginia Tech. Get used to hearing this name.

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ISAIAH MIRANDA HAS A LOT OF TOOLS

Already the tallest player on the floor, at 7-foot-1, when 2023 standout Isaiah Miranda is executing through his legs dunks in the lay up line, you make yourself a comfortable spot on the baseline. Then on the first play of the game the RI Elite big knocks down a catch and shoot three and you are locked in. There is no denying the Berkshires (Mass.) Phelps School sophomore has immense talent. Miranda picked up an offer from Seton Hall just days ago, an offer that joined the likes of Rhode Island, Virginia Tech, Bryant and Siena. A true 7-footer, who can run, jump and shoot, there is a lot to like here.