Sorry for the delay on this final game report from the I-35 Austin-San Antonio Challenge. I was in Las Vegas for several days to provide coverage for an event there and I left my notes behind. November is here and high school basketball is just around the corner. The Austin-San Antonio areas will once again have some quality groups that will fight to make it to The Drum in early March to compete for State.
As I mentioned in my last event wrap up, the Class of 2012 game was disappointing to me in that there were many guys still chasing scholarships with a lot to prove, yet they seemed lackadaisical in their performances.
San Antonio 118 Austin 88
Was this even as close as the score? It seemed like a 50 point game. Taurean Waller Prince (Long Island commit) had 24 points, with 16 of them coming on dunks. His San Antonio Warren team mate Jerrell Ellis chipped in with 18 and Marcus Roper of San Antonio Stevens added 14 of his won. Austin Lanier’s Mark Brown continued to impress as he led the Austin squad with 21 points, Austin Bowie’s Paul Baxter had 18 and Liberty Hill’s Stephen Graves added 17. Everyone else was a no show.
2012 F 6’7″ Taurean Waller Prince of San Antonio Warren
Waller made the game his personal statement. A high end mid major and probably a low end high major player who went under the radar to commit to Long Island. Huge get for them. He runs the floor effortlessy, can hit from various spots on the floor and finishes with authority around the rim and in transition.
2012 W 6’6″ Allex Austin of San Marcos
Austin, the country’s top high jump prospect (7’2″ jump) has many track offers. He wants a place where he can hoop too. Make no mistake about it, he is a mid major plus player. He scored 12 points but it was his game leading 15 rebounds and 5 blocked shots that really puts him in a special category. Don’t sleep on this kid. You can get a two for one deal with this basketball player/track man.
2012 WG 6’4″ Jerell Ellis of San Antonio Warren
Warren will be super tough this season. I was particularly excited to see Ellis making a transition from only being an outstanding perimeter shooter (he has a beautiful stroke) but to also see him getting more involved with other parts of the game including improved ball handling and a willingness to get on the boards too (8 rebounds).
2012 W 6’4″ Mark Brown of Austin Lanier
Lack of notoriety and respect coming into the event appeared to fuel Brown as he gave it 100% everytime on the court. He led the Austin team with 21 points, 5 rebounds and countless hustle plays that don’t go on the stat sheet. Nice kid who wants to play college basketball.
2012 W 6’5″ Marcus Roper of San Antonio Stevens
Roper looks like a player. Great basketball body and excellent stroke from deep. Like Ellis, I see him showing signs of getting more involved and rounding out his game. He had 14 points and 7 rebounds.
2012 G 6’1″ Paul Baxter of Austin Bowie
Baxter had 18 points in the game and was one of the few Austin players looking to penetrate and finish at the rim. He will have a great career at Sam Houston State.
2012 G 6’5″ Uche Ofoegbu of San Antonio Stevens
Ofoegbu had 9 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists in the game. He was cruising and content to let his team mates have the spotlight. The high major athlete is part of an excellent recruiting class by Southern Methodist’s Matt Doherty. Ofoegbu has the body to be a pro and excels when he goes against other nationally recognized players.
2012 P 6’10” Jered Kite of San Antonio Antonian
Kite battled back problems most of last year. I was pleased to see him healthy and running the floor well. He’s still wafer thin but has gotten stronger. He’ll have the last laugh in the spring signing period when he’ll have several D1 offers. Kite is as bouncy as I’ve ever seen him. He was tipping rebounds more than once and also blocked several shots. He is also skilled for a big man, with good court vision and able to knock down face up shots.
2012 G Collin Hart of San Marcos
Hart had 13 points, showing his long range shooting ability. Also was looking to make his team mates better dropping several sweet dimes in the process. The combination of Hart and Austin could make the Rattlers a dangerous team this year.
2012 F Stephen Graves of Liberty Hill
Graves showed in his second straight game that his long range marksmanship was no fluke. This time he bombed 17, including 15 from beyond the arc in another outstanding shooting performance.
Stay tuned for some of our outstanding academic prospects from the I-35 Austin-San Antonio Challenge!