basketball Edit

Under Armour Association: Breaking down NYC action

NEW YORK CITY – Friday night marked the start of the April evaluation period for college coaches. Rivals.com was in the house for the first night of action at the Under Armour Association in the Big Apple.

DUVAL DOMINATES

Trevon Duval
Trevon Duval
Kelly Kline/Under Armour

In a highly anticipated matchup between Trevon Duval, a five-star point guard in the 2017 class, and Javonte Smart, a five-star point guard in the 2018 class, it was Duval who took over the game and led his We R-1 team to a decisive victory over Team Beast Mode.

Duval got off to a slow start on Friday night, but a quick burst where he hit a contested three-pointer before leaking out for a transition dunk seemed to spark him the rest of the night. He’s an electric athlete in the open court, and his combination of size, strength and athleticism at the point guard position is hard to find at the high school level.

A number of high-major head coaches were in attendance to see Duval on Friday night including Mark Turgeon and Cuonzo Martin. Duval said he’s hearing from a long list of schools on a regular basis.

“It’s a little bit of everyone,” Duval said. “Maryland, California, Seton Hall, Villanova, SMU, and a lot of schools on the West Coast and all over really.”

WILKES IS A WANTED MAN

Kris Wilkes
Kris Wilkes
Kelly Kline/Under Armour

The Indy Hoosiers didn’t open up Under Armour Association play with the result they wanted by taking a tough loss to Canada Elite, but five-star small forward Kris Wilkes showed up to play in a big way. The 6-foot-7 combo forward pumped in 24 points and hauled in eight rebounds in the first game of the night.

On a team that doesn’t have a ton of size, Wilkes is forced to show off his versatility by playing more on the interior. He’s more than capable of playing on the block offensively, and showed the toughness to battle in the low post on the other end. What makes him a mismatch offensively is his ability to also play on the perimeter and take advantage of opposing forwards.

Judging by the coaches that showed up to watch him play on opening night, the Indiana native should feel good about where he stands with college coaches. John Calipari, Mark Turgeon, Tom Izzo, John Beilein and Mike Brey were among the high-major head coaches on hand to see him play. Kentucky could be the next school to offer.

“They have told me to keep working hard and they are going to keep watching me,” Wilkes said. “They were here today, so we’ll see where that goes.”

NEWS AND NOTES

Isaiah Washington
Isaiah Washington
Kelly Kline/Under Armour

New Heights point guard Isaiah Washington has the feel of a traditional New York City point guard. At 6-foot-1, he’s a tough lead guard that is relentless attacking the basket. He’s a scrappy defender and willed his team to a close win over Earl Watson Elite on Friday night. Minnesota is his only high-major offer.

Washington’s teammate, Keith Williams, had an outstanding opening night. The 6-foot-4 athletic wing dropped 24 points on a combination of jump shots and transition baskets. Minnesota and Rutgers are among the schools recruiting the 2017 wing.

Moses Brown is already the No. 44 ranked prospect in the 2018 class, and for good reason. At 6-foot-11, he’s a long, athletic post player with great hands and soft touch around the basket. He’s still raw and needs to add strength, but the tools are there for him to become an elite post prospect.

Ira Lee started off the evaluation period with a double-double of 13 points and 15 rebounds. Andy Enfield, Cuonzo Martin, Jerod Haase and Sean Miller were all in attendance to see him.

Jemarl Baker, a California commit, had a big night in front of his future coaches. The 6-foot-3 combo guard is a play-maker off the dribble and a tough shot maker off the catch and shoot.

Drue Drinnon looked good for Team Thad’s 16-under team. An athletic point guard at 6-foot-1, the four-star prospect can create offense for himself and others.