#pcbb Weekly Recruiting Update 8/15/14

The July live evaluation periods have come and gone and a lot of recruits have cut their lists down to more manageable figures. Some recruits have even already given commitments. Providence obviously got some good news last weekend after their Elite Camp on Saturday with two verbal commitments. The first was from a member of the class of 2017 (rising sophomores) in Javon Taylor. Taylor seems to have a good basketball pedigree and isn’t done growing.

The second commitment came from a member of the class of 2015. Alex Owens gave Ed Cooley his pledge after newly minted associate head coach Bob Simon worked tirelessly as the lead recruiter with Owens. Adding Owens to Ryan Fazekas has vaulted the national class ranking for the Friars to 19th according to the 247Sports Composite Team Ranking. CoxHub had the guys at New England Recruiting Report give a writeup on Alex Owens. It’s an interesting read. Owens is playing for USA South in the Nike Global Challenge in Chicago. His team won their first game against Pan Africa in overtime on Thursday but fell in game two against China Friday morning. Game three is Friday night at 9pm against USA East.

Nike Global Challenge USA South vs Pan Africa Box Score

Some Friar targets also cut their lists down recently and PC made the cut for two members of the famed Boo Williams AAU team. Justin Robinson was first and he included Providence in his final 6 along with Creighton, Maryland, Temple, UNLV and Virginia Tech. Robinson recently attended the CP3 Elite Camp and came away feeling very positive about the experience. “It was great. [I] had a wonderful time [and] learned a lot.” Robinson’s summer is officially over as he begins school on Saturday. A few days after Robinson cut down his list and included the Friars, his Boo Williams teammate Kenny Williams did the same. Williams is known as a dead-eye shooter at the shooting guard position. The other schools on his list are Georgetown, Indiana, North Carolina, Oklahoma, VCU and Virginia Teach. Williams is rumored to be leaning towards the Tar Heels but it’s not over till it’s over.

As for some guard targets in the class of 2015 that Friar fans can keep an eye on after Donovan Mitchell committed to Louisville, here is a list of targets the staff will likely hone in:

I interviewed Simon Wright from the class of 2017 who received a Providence offer after the July live periods ended. You can read that interview here.

Providence target Trevor Manuel who plays at Oak Hill Academy in VA by way of Michigan cut his list down to 7 today and the Friars didn’t make the cut. Manuel is more of an upside prospect at this point but could morph into a very skilled and long wing player at the college level though he has dropped in the national rankings since last year.

Scout.com released their updated class of 2015 rankings on Thursday. You can see where PC recruits fell on the top 100 list here.

The Scott Hazelton Camp was held in Andover, MA from August 11th-14th and some PC recruits were in attendance including recent commit Javon Taylor and a few others who attended the PC Elite Camp. Here’s a recap from NewEnglandRecruitingReport.com of those Friar recruits and how they played:

Chris Baldwin (2015) – Coming off an impressive July where Baldwin wowed the crowd with several high level dunks and blocks, he continued his aggressive play here by rebounding above the rim, leading transition, and finish at the rim with both finesse and explosiveness.

Saul Phiri (2016) – He’s coming off a big summer that resulted in multiple new offers and it’s not hard to see why.  He’s highly versatile with size, length, athleticism, strength, and intelligence.  He used his length and size to rebound and defend, knocked down shots from different spots on the floor, and penetrated the heart of the defense to facilitate for others.

Wenyen Gabriel (2016) – His rapid improvement over the last year led to a breakout AAU season and it was more of the same here as he shot the ball extremely well from the perimeter, used his length to rebound, challenged shots at the rim, and scored over smaller defenders.  His stock is only likely to continue to rise as his frame fills out.

Arkel Ager (2016) – He was among the most intriguing prospects at camp thanks to his college ready body, high level athleticism, unselfishness, and improving skill set.  He knocked down several long range threes along with an equal amount of explosive drives and big dunks.  If his game continues to evolve at this pace, his recruitment should see new levels as well.

Tyonne Malone (2016) – The Springfield product continued to score the ball in high volume, mixing crafty finishes in transition with an improved three-point stroke while also attacking the glass and utilizing his physical tools on the defensive end.

Javon Taylor (2017)- Fresh off his commitment to Providence on Saturday, Taylor’s upside was still on display 48 hours later.  While he shares both his brothers’ length, Javon is most comfortable on the perimeter and has exceptional vision with the ball and the ability to see the game more than one pass at a time, all of which could ultimately allow him to develop into a big point guard.

Also playing in the Nike Global Challenge is a player that impressed many of the observers at the PC Elite Camp last weekend. Jordy Tshimanga is a 6’10 member of the class of 2016 from Canada who plays at the MacDuffie School. So far in two games, Tshimanga is averaging 5.0 ppg and 8 rpg for Canada.

The Hoop Group Future All-Americans Camp was held in Reading, PA last week and featured mostly the top rising freshmen and sophomores in the Northeast. Friar targets Hamidou Diallo and Donald Flores impressed at this camp:

ESPN.com’s Adam Finkelstein:

Hamidou Diallo, 6-3, SG, Putnam Science Academy (Conn.): Diallo’s breakout summer was capped by an MVP performance in the camp all-star game. He’s long and athletic, but also slippery and smooth, capable of getting to the rim in a variety of ways and scoring in bunches.

GothamHoops.com’s Ray Anczelowicz:

Hamidou Diallo / 6-4 G / NYC Jayhawks (NY) / Putnam Science Academy (CT):

Diallo used Future All American Camp as a coming out party. The 6-4 guard established himself as one of the top rising sophomores in the area following stellar performances throughout the week. A hard-nosed two-way guard, Diallo’s size and skill-set caused havoc for opposing ball-handlers and defenders. Diallo’s length aided his ability to effectively guard a multitude of positions on the floor. The NYC Jayhawks AAU standout was terrific with the ball, as well. Diallo craftiness led to drives to the basket where the sneaky athlete finished above the rim with ease. The Lefrak City, NY product capped off an impressive showing with Most Valuable Player honors at the Super Soph All-Star Game.

Donald Flores / 5-10 G / Juice All-Stars (NY) / Abraham Lincoln (NY):

Flores rose to the occasion at Future All American Camp, becoming a household name among a slew of gifted guards. The recent Lincoln import flourished with the ball; racing past defenders on the break en route to a slick finish at the rim as well as displaying his three-point shooting prowess. Flores is adjusting to the point guard position, noted Lincoln assistant James Barrett, but if his play in Reading, PA was any indication of what to expect then the PSAL may have another impact floor general on their hands.

The More Than a Game Invitational playoffs began in Queens, NY earlier this week. Two Providence targets and members of the Putnam Science Academy squad competed for the NYC’s Finest team. The NYC Finest squad had a big comeback to defeat St. Francis Prep in the quarterfinals behind 17 points from Mamadou Diarra and 13 points from Hamidou Diallo. Thursday night NYC Finest would take the court for the semi’s against Benjamin Cardozo. Again the NYC Finest would prevail with Diallo scoring 9 points and Diarra scoring 6 in the low scoring 42-41 game. The finals are Friday night.

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