2007 Beach Ball Classic Top Prospects

The best players from an action-packed week

Jan. 3, 2008

By Van Coleman

Special To CSTV.com & Hoopmasters.com


Van Coleman

Van is one of the nation's premier recruiting experts.
E-mail here!

The Beach Ball Classic featured some top-notch individual performances headed by Chris Singleton, Ray Shipman, Shawn Williams, Roger Franklin and Dequan Jones, plus a number of other talented sleepers and underclassmen.


The 2007 Beach Ball Classic wasn't as deep as some year's we've seen in the past, but as usual the talent at the top put on a real show on the final day of the tournament.  We got to see 14 of the 16 teams in the event and were really impressed with the young talent in Myrtle Beach.  The Beach Ball Classic featured some of the most athletic teams we observed during the Holiday season.  So with that in mind, here's our look at the top performers at the 2007 Beach Ball Classic:




Beach Ball Classic Top Performers - (Listed by Height)


Chris Singleton 6-foot-9 PF Dunwoody (Ga.) - (No.28/Florida State) All-Tournament performer was the dominant player in Myrtle Beach on the final day.  He scored 27 points and pulled down 18 boards.  Future first round pick will make immediate impact with Seminoles with his inside-out skills, solid stoke from around arc, and explosive hops in the paint.  He will be rising in our next ranking update.


Tom Pritchard 6-foot-9 PF Lakewood St. Edward's - (Indiana) This steady big man had 14 in opener an double-double in second game.  He has a real nose for ball off the glass and finishes around hoop in traffic.  He will add solid depth for Hoosiers next winter.


Shawn Kemp Jr. 6-foot-9 (2009) Canton Cherokee (GA) - This athletic insider has excellent bloodlines and is just starting to come into his own as a player.  He led Beach Ball in field goal percentage hitting 12-of-14 from field (86 percent) in two games.  He's just starting to assert himself on offensive end.  High majors should be monitoring his game.


Nick Wright 6-foot-8 PF Suffolk Nansemond River (Va.) - (Old Dominion) This long and lean athletic insider really impressed us with his face up skills, ability to put it on floor or pop 12-footer off the dribble.  He can play above the rim too.  Look for him to make an immediate impact at Old Dominion.


Richard Howell 6-foot-8 (2009) PF Marietta Wheeler (Ga.) - (No. 53 Junior)  All-Tournament performer was Wheeler's top performer in the championship game scoring 20 points and pulling down 11 rebounds.  He uses his body around hoop, but is surprisingly quick footed with solid bounce off the floor.  Has tons of ACC, SEC, and C-USA interest.


Rakeem Buckles 6-foot-8 (2009) CF Miami Monsignor Pace (Fla.) - He didn't score here like he did in Florida only getting into double figures in the third place game with 10 points and 10 big rebounds.  He is explosive in transition and has the ability to play above the rim.  All kinds of ACC and SEC schools are showing interest in this long athlete.


Terrence Saintil 6-foot-7 PF Miami Monsignor Pace (Fla.) - (VCU) He really played with intensity and showed that he can have an early impact for the Rams next year.  He just missed a double-double versus Boys and Girls scoring 15 points and pulling down eight rebounds.  He was much more aggressive in Myrtle Beach.


Richie Phares 6-foot-7 (2009) PF Georgetown Scott (Ky.) - He continues to impress, going 7-for-7 from the field versus host squad from Socastee in route to 17 points.  He followed that up knocking down six of eight against Duncanville to finish with 15 points.


Shawn Williams 6-foot-7 (2009) Duncanville (Tex.) - (No.36 Junior)  All-Tournament performer was best player on court in final, scoring 23 points and pulling down 12 rebounds, to lead Duncanville to title.  He can score with either hand on drive and finishes in traffic.  He is definitely among best in junior class.


David Imes 6-foot-6 WF Brooklyn Boys and Girls (N.Y.) - This bouncy rebounder attacks hoop or crashes glass versus bigs ion paint.  He scored 9 points and pulled down 11 rebounds and blocked 4 shots in third place game.  He should see interest from MEAC to Atlantic Ten.


Emari Bailey 6-foot-6 (2009) WF Jacksonville Arlington Country Day (Fla.) - All-Tournament performer opened with 22 versus Boys and Girls, but was even more impressive against Myrtle Beach hitting 6-threes as he finished with 27 points.  High majors should be monitoring his progress.


Ari Stewart 6-foot-6 (2009) WF Marietta Wheeler (Ga.) - (No.21 Junior)  All-Tournament performer opened tourney with 24 points versus Hartsville and was solid in final against Duncanville.  He has tools to score and board from wing from arc to the rim.  He's one of 2009's best wing talents.


Delwan Graham 6-foot-6 CF Dunwoody (Ga.) - (No.91/LSU) A physical combo who can finish drive with dunk or pop mid-range jumper off the dribble.  He was on fire versus Eastern Commerce scoring 24 points in the opener on 12 for 16 shooting.


Patrick Jackson 6-foot-5 WF Brooklyn Boys & Girls (N.Y.) - (Rutgers) Athletic wing can slash to rim or knock down jumper from beyond the arc or with oop at the rim.  He is a solid athlete who will add immediate depth on the wing for the Scarlet Knights next fall.


Kevin Butler 6-foot-5 WF Duncanville (Tex.) - (TCU) All-Tournament performer really impressed us with his nose for the ball.  He just seems to be in right place all the time.  He finished with 15 points and seven rebounds in final.  He should see lots of PT as a freshman for the Horned Frogs.


Dequan Jones 6-foot-5 WF Marietta Wheeler (Ga.) - (No.51/Miami Fla.)  All-Tournament performer can flat out fly to the hoop and create highlights that leave fans buzzing. He was a 20 and 10 guy until the final when he struggled a little hanging on perimeter.  Will be good one for the Hurricanes from Day One and has Brandon Roy-type potential.


Ray Shipman 6-foot-5 SG Miami Monsignor Pace (Fla.) - (No. 77/Florida)  All-Tournament performer went for 31 points versus Canton Cherokee including 4-threes to kick off his Beach Ball play and came back with 30 points and 10 rebounds against Dunwoody.  Should be another Gator outside threat once he hits the court in Gainesville next year.


Tyler Portwood 6-foot-5 SG Georgetown Scott (Ky.) - He was solid in Myrtle Beach averaging 18 points an outing while knocking down 9-of-18 shots from beyond the arc.  He struggled a little off the drive, but has tools to create that drive. Could be a steal at mid-major level, especially when strength catches up.


Roger Franklin 6-foot-5 (2009) WF Duncanville (Tex.) - (No.93 Junior) Tournament MVP made a statement with his game that he should get consideration for a top 50 spot.  He seems to have adjusted to his much more mature body, finishing drives and knocking down key jumpers all week to earn MVP honors for the Beach Ball champions.


Brandon Romain 6-foot-3 CG Brooklyn Boys and Girls (N.Y.) - This aggressive combo can attack the hoop and finish in traffic.  He was stellar scoring 24 points versus Wheeler and followed it up with 17 points and was his team's go to guy in third place game.  Based on what we saw the Atlantic 10 should all be calling on him.


Tahj Tate 6-foot-3 (2009) SG Marietta Wheeler (Ga.) - Bouncy junior scoring guard was steady all week for Wheeler averaging right at 10 points an outing as their third or fourth option.  He has lots of athletic gifts and knows how to play the game.  Sleeper in the class of 2009.


Kendall Marshall 6-foot-3 (2010) PG Arlington Bishop O'Connell (Va.) - (No.10 Soph./North Carolina) This talented young point has great size and poise for one so young.  He is a pass first guy who averaged 7.5 assists a game for the tournament, but can score from three or off the dribble when needed.  He will be a good one down the road for the Tarheels.


Jason Clark 6-foot-2 SG Arlington Bishop O'Connell (Va.) - (No.102/Georgetown) All-Tournament performer had 20 and 11 versus Wheeler, then followed it up with 30 points against St. Edward's.  He was equally impressive in the final scoring 26 points including three of four from three.  Look for him to make a run at a starting spot early in his career with the Hoyas.


Clayton Sterling 6-foot-2 CG Brooklyn Boys and Girls (N.Y.) - All-Tournament performer can play either guard spot at the mid or higher D-1 level.  He can break you down off the dribble and is willing to make pass to open man.  He had 25 points in the semi's including 4-threes and four assists.  He should get mid to high major looks this spring.  Again Atlantic 10 is calling.


Andre Jones 6-foot-2 SG Suffolk Nansemond River (Va.) - All-Tournament performer had 17 points in double overtime loss to Duncanville in the opener, then went for 27 points versus Eastern Commerce to lead team to consolation championship game.  He hit open jumper and can finish in traffic off the dribble.


Pierre Jordan 6-foot-1 PG Dunwoody (Ga.) - (Florida State)  This solid lead guard showed range to arc, handled defensive pressure, and got the ball to Singleton and Graham (8 assists vs. Pace) off the dribble.  He isn't flashy, but he should add depth at the point for the Seminoles.


Jordan Scott 6-foot (2010) CG Hartsville (S.C.) - Young wing can knock down jumper around the perimeter or attack the hoop off the dribble.  He scored 20 points versus Evangelical Christian in the final day's opener.  Mid D-1 programs on up should be monitoring his progress.


Jonathan Milewski 5-foot-11 (2009) CG Memphis Evangelical Christian (Tenn.) - This solid combo guard really grew on everyone along press row over the week in Myrtle Beach.  He went off for 25 points versus Hartsville knocking down five of eight from beyond the arc.  He has point skills, but needs to hone point mentality to draw D-1 interest.


Brian Talley 5-foot-9 PG Duncanville (Tex.) - (Southern) This explosive and athletic point guard can create opportunities for teammates in transition or off the dribble.  He hit open jumper and finished in traffic.  He can knock down free throws at crunch time and will be a good one at Southern.


Faces in the Crowd:  There were a number of coaches who attended the Beach Ball Classic.  We observed assistants from Florida, Wake Forest, Auburn, Cincinnati, LSU, TCU, Texas Tech, Florida State, Virginia, VCU, North Carolina, N.C. State, Wofford, Winthrop, Longwood, and Coastal Carolina in Myrtle Beach.


We hope you enjoyed our coverage of the Beach Ball Classic, up next we will go around the country looking at some of the nation's top high school tournaments, the winners and top performers during the Holiday Season, right here at "Generation Next".