Tuesday was a big night for 2009 five-star prospect Leslie McDonald. In front of the head coaches of the No. 1 and No. 2 teams in the country, McDonald poured in 26 points and grabbed 11 rebounds leading Memphis Briarcrest High School to a win.
"Roy Williams and John Calipari were in the crowd," said Briarcrest head coach John Harrington. "We thought it was pretty neat to have the coaches of the top two teams in the country in the gym."
Coach Harrington also noted that McDonald, a 6-foot-4, 195-pound shooting guard, has worked his list down to Duke, Georgetown, Indiana, Memphis, North Carolina, Ohio State and Tennessee.
"No there aren't any favorites," said Harrington. "Leslie just wanted to cut the list down, so he can focus on these seven schools. He's visited Memphis, Tennessee and Indiana unofficially, but he hasn't visited the others. This spring he would like to do something unofficially with the east coast schools."
McDonald's recent visit to Indiana for the Kentucky game made a significant impression on him according to Harrington.
"For our generation we think of Indiana being Bobby Knight, but Indiana is a lot more than Bobby Knight," said Harrington. "You get up into Kentucky and then into Indiana and it is a different cat. We are into our basketball here in Memphis, but they absolutely love it up there."
A prototypical high-major shooting guard, McDonald's game is only improving as he matures.
"I'm seeing a more balanced scoring attack out of him," said Harrington. "We have several players who can score, so Leslie is being very unselfish. But at the same time he is being aggressive when he has opportunities to score. He is a stronger and faster player than he was last year. When he gets to college, someone is going to have a 6'4, 215-pound guard."
Coach Harrington confirmed that all of the schools on McDonald's list have offered with the exception of Duke.
The No. 17 ranked prospect in the class of 2009, McDonald is averaging 20 points and eight rebounds per game.
Leslie McDonald scouting report:
A solid athlete with a smooth shooting stroke, McDonald is in the process of extending his range and improving his consistency from deep. He has the potential to be a great shooter. When crowded he loves to take the ball left and shoot either a pull up or floater, and he has a good feel for moving without the ball. He also has the length and quickness to be a lockdown defender.