Prelude – Class of 2016

KOBE

We prime the pump with a series of preludes on the new guys – the Class of 2016. Initial interviews with the 3 newest Jays:  Jordan, Kobe, and Davion.

First up:  Kobe Paras

Kobe22
Courtesy-Compton Magic

Kobe Paras – @Im_Not_Kobe 

AAU – @Compton_Magic  

SF/SG  6-6, 190,  Cathedral HS, Los Angeles, CA 

Scout.com Assessment: http://www.scout.com/college/basketball/recruiting/story/1584683-highlights-kobe-paras

ESPN Assessment:  http://insider.espn.go.com/college-sports/basketball/recruiting/player/evaluation/_/id/201246/kobe-paras

Verbal Commits Profile:  http://www.verbalcommits.com/players/kobe-paras

1st of all, Welcome to Creighton University and the Hilltop.  Hopefully you will use this time wisely and build your education well.  Creighton is (one of) the Best university(ies) in the US.  Education is more than what is in the books…diversify your interests, ask questions, use all of the faculty, facilities, and staff to broaden your base, amplify or correct what you currently know, and grow into a well-rounded, diverse, and curious human being.

Be aware that learning never stops – degrees are merely mileposts – stay open to learning, to growth, and then give of yourself to make this a better world – Serve others.  Success is in observing/finding what is missing in the current environment, building the idea into a reality, and amending the results of that reality so as it becomes a benefit to as many other people as possible.  In whatever you choose to do, if you modify it so that it benefits others as well as yourself, you Will be successful.

You are what is known as a bread and butter player for CU hoops.  Prior to our ascent to the BE, 2 and 3 star players were our forte.  Finding and developing under evaluated, under recruited, unknown, or guys out in Podunk, diamonds in-the-rough, was a Creighton tradition.  Our coaching staff has a 20+ year history of finding guys who were overlooked and under estimated.  The vast majority of our “all-time” players, including the great Doug McDermott (Bulls), Kyle Korver (Hawks), Anthony Tolliver (Kings), Rodney Buford (former 76er), and hoards of others fit this bill of fare.  Listen to the coaches – they know what they are doing.  You have been added to this team to help win Championships – no other reason.  Be prepared Boy Scout, be prepared.

An athletic program &/or team is like the body:   All parts and pieces are essential for it to perform to it’s optimum.  No one piece or person is necessarily greater, as all are important to the whole.  The whole is the sum, but it is also greater than the parts.  The program/team comes 1st.  Team success takes precedence over personal success, and when the team exceeds expectations – all gain and will garner the benefits, rewards, and awards.  Winning championships – exempt tourneys, the Big East, and the NCAA Championship – are the program goals.

Team 1st!  When your time comes – do your part.

 

No Response to my questionaire request.  However, he did a Twitter Q&A this AM.

https://twitter.com/Im_Not_Kobe?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw

 

Prelude – Class of 2016

college-hoops-map
Courtesy – Mandatory.com

 

Hoops 24/7, 365.  Yep it’s August and one can feel the anticipation beginning to build for the upcoming college basketball season.  The Creighton boards are humming and the faithful are like thoroughbreds – chomping at their bits – eagerly anticipating the starting bell.  But, of course we must suffer through the end of summer, and then endure 2 months of unholy pigskin, but the season is approaching. Bluenotes normally begins gearing up in August, usually crowned with gtmo’s ridiculous prognostications on 15 August.  This season will not differ.

We prime the pump with a series of preludes on the new guys – the Class of 2016. Initial interviews with the 3 newest Jays:  Jordan, Kobe, and Davion.  Who’d a thunk that we would ever see Jordan and Kobe in Jays uni’s?  lol.  These young men fit the historic mold of Creighton recruits, as they are men that have been often overlooked, underevaluated, and under-recruited during their HS careers – even while showing significant growth, maturation, and improvements in their games.  Our coaching staff – ever alert and with a discerning eye for talent – found our next fortune, these 3 diamonds in the rough.  Jordan, Kobe, and Davion may not have the cache of high recruiting services number ratings, but they are excellent players and fit the Bluejays style of play.

harvest

This class is special.  While underappreciated by the media pundits and talking heads, young men like these 3 have been Creighton’s bread and butter over the years.  Guys like these have consistently carried our program to great heights and to sustained achievement over the last 20 years.  We expect no less than excellence from Jordan, Kobe, and Davion during their tenures on the Hilltop. We expect them to work hard, to be staunch members of the squad, and to contribute to winning championships at Creighton. That is why they were recruited and are now Bluejays!

gtmoBlue

Repost – Class of 2009

Creighton Bluejays
Class of 2009

Left to right:
Andrew Bock, PG, Rivals 4-star: 6′ 1″, 165
Darryl Ashford, SG/SF, Rivals 3-star: 6′ 4-5″, 180
Greg Allen, PG/SG, Scout 2-star: 6′ 2″, 170 (added 5/19/09)
Ethan Wragge, SF, Scout 3-star: 6′ 8″, 185
Wayne Runnels, SF/PF: 6′ 7″, 215
?? 6′ 8-10″, 250+/ The ‘Mystery Recruit’

Well, well, well. The Jays go from famine to feast in a hurry over this late signing period. Many of the faithful, including yours truly, had been a bit concerned about the lack of information on prospective recruits, and on the seeming difficulties in continuing to attract quality players to the program.

There have been myriad questions, worries, and criticisms regarding our seeming inability to land legitimate (6′ 8″ and above) bigs. On the surface of things this class should put most, if not all, of the recent concerns to bed. The question of acquiring good size appears to have been answered.

As for the quality of this class, it probably ranks 3rd behind the storied Class of 2006 and the 2007 Class. Andrew had a stellar year and earned several awards & recognition. Rivals elevated him to Top 100 status and a 4 star rating. Ethan has been consistent all year after having a breakout spring and summer of 2008, earned Scout 3 star status. Both Wayne and Darryl received recognition for outstanding Juco play this season and were Juco All Americans.

Late Spring Signer -19May09Added another (3rd ) guard, Greg Allen, a Scout 2 star, to the mix as the 5th scholie recruit. Greg is from Eureka, CA. He played 4 yrs on varsity @ Eureka HS. He listed as the #17 ranked player by NorCalPreps.com, in their NorCal Top 40 list.

Speculation abounds ico a 6′ 10″ mystery recruit. Still no inkling of who this ‘true’ big may be.

All of our commits are welcome additions to the team and will help bolster their given positions. All fill needed roles and will see court time in the Jays system.

All in all a great mix of experience, basketball savvy, and talent. A very good class indeed.

gtmo

Jays – The Recruiting "Road Ahead"

The Road Ahead in CU Basketball Recruiting: 2009 – 2012.

For the most part the recruiting season for the 2009 year seems ‘in the bag’. The Jays have scored heavily in the spring season, after a slow, but what proved to be a Giant Step forward last fall. Early signings by much improving Scout 3-star SF Ethan Wragge and what proved to be the ‘Great Get’ of Rivals 4-star PG Andrew Bock, more than offset early misses on Cougill, Creekmur, Henderson, Honeycutt, Marshall, A. Stover, & Royce White in the 2009 Class, as well as Larson in the 2010 Class.

The spring signings include: Juco AA PF/SF Wayne Runnels, Juco AA/HM SG Darryl Ashford (Rivals 3-Star), and PG/SG Greg Allen (2-star). The Jays also added two Walkons for 2009 in Creighton Prep star PG Taylor Stormberg and NU transfer/Westside HS standout PG Ross Ferranini.

The Jays entertained other recruits over the season, including some sought after ‘bigs’, however, the above signees are the extent of the class for now. Many of the faithful are still disappointed in not landing a ‘true big’ or two, as the common opinion is that is where we really need the help. This belief has increased in size & proportion since the untimely departure of KW. Where do we go from here?

Last year we brought in 2 guards, 1 SF/SG, and 2 w/o’s (1 PF/1SF). This season we bring in 2 PG, 1 SG, 1 SF, 1PF, and 2 w/o’s (both PG’s). For my purposes here I will count JC as a SF.

2008 – 2 PG/SG – 1 SF – 2 walk-ons (SF & PF)
2009 – 2 PG – 1 SG – 1 SF – 1 PF – 2 walk-ons (2 PG)

This totals 3 SF’s, 2 PF’s, and 7 guards…incl the 4 walk-on players.

How does this affect Jays recruiting up the road? It becomes readily apparent that we will not be looking at many (if any) guards the next year or two. With the four guards currently on the team (2 Jr, 1 So, and 1 R-Fr) we should be good to go at the guard spots with 9 players (7 scholie – 2 w/o). Although many here expected to concentrate on bigs this recruiting season – and although we went after a few good ones, the efforts did not bear fruit. 2010 should prove to be the year we make a major effort to land a few big men. Several are on the CreightonJoey Recruiting Matrix.

http://bluejaybasketball.wordpress.com/jay-recruiting/

I have updated my Hit/Miss table using CJ’s Recruit listings, which are much more palatable, (and in BJC-speak) more ‘realistic’ than the recruit listing I use (a more national & WC flavour). Kids we have offered are in Bold, others in regular type. Parentheses ( ) indicate BCS interest. I have intentionally left the 2010 guards off this table, with exception to the one who has been offered – as the premise here is to focus on the 2010 PF and Ctr positions. Barnes is added for 2010 – because he is a local and in our target area. All CJ recruits are listed for 2011 onward. I added Strickland and Ellis in 2012 as they are in our traditional target areas. I have guessed that the coaching staff will attempt to spread/use 2011 scholies creatively in 2010 and will hold a few for use in 2012.

Feinberg Academic All-America Classic

The 1st Annual Feinberg Academic All-America Classic was held on 7 – 11 May, 2009, at the Citizen’s Bank Arena, in Ontario, CA. Creighton’s Andrew Bock was among the invitee’s.

http://www.basketball.org/the-first-annual-feinberg-academic-all-american-basketball-classic/#more-2156

AB won the 3pt Shooting contest. His West team also won their 10 May contest over the East squad. Bock outplayed fellow LA area PG Darius Morris of Windward Prep (Michigan signee), and 4 players of his West squad scored in double figures.

Squads / Rosters http://www.aaa-classic.com/

Results as posted – ESPN’s CalHiSports.com

http://myespn.go.com/blogs/calhisports/0-7-13/Academic-All-American-Classic–Nelson–Cunningham-Shine.html

The East got as close as four points at 79-74 with four minutes to play, but could get no closer as the West’s Reeves Nelson (Modesto Christian) helped his team take control with his all-around play on both ends. Nelson led a 8-0 mini-spurt that gave his team a 87-75 and sealed the win for the West All-Stars. The UCLA-bound Nelson finished with 13 points, 10 rebounds, six assists, three blocks and two steals. He was named the game’s most outstanding player.

“We knew we were bigger and wanted to get out and fast break,” Nelson said about the West team’s 55-46 rebounding advantage. “I was a little rusty at the beginning of the season (because of my football injuries), but I’ve was getting back my timing in the last few weeks. I feel like I’m getting better every day.”

In addition to Cunningham and Nelson, the West All-Stars also got a solid performance from first team all-stater Andrew Bock (Eisenhower, Rialto), who also won the three-point contest. The Creighton-bound guard made two of three three-point attempts and finished the game with 14 points. Morris’ Windward teammate, UCLA-bound Anthony Stover, played for the victors and was the team’s fourth player in double digits, finishing with 13 points and nine rebounds.

Was a comprehensive and excellent program for the athletes and families, which was presented for this 1st annual event. Kudos to the Feinberg organization.

Bluejays – Class of 2009

Creighton Bluejays
Class of 2009

Left to right:
Andrew Bock, PG, Rivals 4-star: 6′ 1″, 165
Greg Allen, PG/SG, Scout 2-star: 6′ 2″, 170 (added 5/15/09)
Darryl Ashford, SG/SF, Rivals 3-star: 6′ 4-5″, 180
Ethan Wragge, SF, Scout 3-star: 6′ 8″, 185
Wayne Runnels, SF/PF: 6′ 7″, 215
1 PF on campus this weekend – ?? 6′ 8-10″, 250+/ The ‘Mystery Recruit’

Well, well, well. The Jays go from famine to feast in a hurry over this late signing period. Many of the faithful, including yours truly, had been a bit concerned about the lack of information on prospective recruits, and on the seeming difficulties in continuing to attract quality players to the program.

There have been myriad questions, worries, and criticisms regarding our seeming inability to land legitimate (6′ 8″ and above) bigs. On the surface of things this class should put most, if not all, of the recent concerns to bed. The question of acquiring good size appears to have been answered.

As for the quality of this class, it probably ranks 3rd behind the storied Class of 2006 and the 2007 Class. Andrew had a stellar year and earned several awards & recognition. Rivals elevated him to Top 100 status and a 4 star rating. Ethan has been consistent all year after having a breakout spring and summer of 2008, earned Scout 3 star status. Both Wayne and Darryl received recognition for outstanding Juco play this season and were Juco All Americans. (Will had early Juco recognition out in the ACCAC this year, as a Frosh.)

Note: 21Apr09No confirmation has been given on the 5th recruit yet. No confirmation of who the weekend visitor was on campus, but folks continue to field new names of recent decommits, transferees, and of course, more guards.
Note: 15May09Added another guard, Greg Allen, to the mix as the 5th recruit. Still no inkling/sign of which ‘true’ big may be coming. Worry warts on the BJC are speculating that no big man will arrive until the 2010 Class. It ain’t over.

All are welcome additions to the team and will help bolster their given positions. All fill needed roles and will see court time in the Jays system.

All in all a great mix of experience, basketball savvy, and talent. A very good class indeed.

gtmo

Jays – The Short History: Hits and Misses

The Recruiting Short History: Hits & Misses.

Need for increased continuity and retention.

-gtmoBlue


Folks over at the BJC are up in arms. Several laments – Too high expectations. Too young a team (still). Poor coaching. Lack of effort by the team members. Poor recruiting. Not enough hardy, tough Midwestern kids, and too many slick 3 & 4 star players. On and on it goes.

I have pointed out/argued on the BJC that had we not been fortunate enough in our recruiting to snag several West Coast, Texas, and other out-of-area players, that the Jays would indeed be in dire straits. We have fallen on hard times in our recruitment of midwestern region kids. We have dropped to approx 20% success rate in regional recruiting.

Much of the fault lies with coaching changes in many of the regional universities, and as such, an increase in the competition for regional recruits.

Mike Anderson – Missouri

Tubby Smith – Minnesota

Rick (Tubby) Majerus – St Louis

Cuonzo Martin – Missouri St

Gregg Marshall – Wichita St

Iowa State

Iowa

Butler

both Dakota State teams

Also as some of our traditional recruiting opponents have seen recent program successes, their respective recruiting has also prospered.

Wisconsin

Minnesota

Marquette

Illinois

Bradley

Kansas State

Illinois State

Colorado State

Butler

When the above schools are added into the areas’ traditional Big 10, Big 12, CUSA, MAC, & MVC recruiting wars – it’s a crowded field.

Now add in intruders from outside the region:

Providence

Seton Hall

Virginia

Baylor

SMU

Santa Clara

Arizona State

Gonzaga

Portland

Oregon State

and others…

The Midwestern recruiting grounds have now become a free for all, a melee with elbows flying, a serious slugfest.

The chart below shows the Jays recruiting hits and misses over the last few years. In reviewing this chart one can see that because of the increased competition we have missed several good midwestern kids. Were it not for our out-of-area recruiting, we would have a very shorthanded squad today.

Two points:

Our missing an additional big in 2006 & 2007, along with some negative retention issues have left us short of talent in-the-paint. It is not lack of talent, but lack of bodies.

1) Our missing out on Matt Hill and Keith Spenser (2006), and George Goode, Festus Ezeli, or Chandler Parsons (2007) hurt more than we could have imagined back then (we still had AT & Dane aboard). Not landing one of the many 2008 midwest bigs or Greg Echenique further compounded the problem.

2) Additionally, not retaining Steve Smith and Ty Morrison contributed a bit to the problems, although they would have graduated last year. Both could/would have lent some continuity for the current bigs.

We are painfully short on Bigs. We need to be smarter in both our recruiting and retention policies. The coaches are ‘busting butt’ to fix the problem(s). What is also called for is a bit of patience, a bit of support, and a little faith in the program.

Go Big Blue.

CU Recruiting Talley Hits and Misses: 2006 – 2010
2006-2007 2007-2008 2008-2009 2009-2010 2010-2011
Chad Millard (So.) Booker Woodfox (Jr.) Justin Carter (Jr.) Ethan Wragge (Fr)
Ty Morrison (Jr.) Cavel Witter (So.) Josh Jones (Fr.) Andrew Bock (Fr)
Kenny Lawson (Fr.) P’Allen Stinnett (Fr.) Antoine Young (Fr.)
Isaac Miles (Fr.) Kenton Walker (Fr.)
Casey Harriman (Fr.) Kaleb Korver (Fr.)
D’Angelo Jackson (Fr.)

Aaron Brandt (Fr.)



2 1 4 (3) 2 (3) 3








Matt Hi NE

G Goode MO G Gibbs IA Cougill IA C Creekmur IA
C Johnson MN Anthony Slack KS M Gatens IA Uhlenhopp IA Cody Larson SD
C Bailey KS Conner Teahan KS J Reid KS Van Deest IA E Anderson WS
K Spenser KS

J Brandenburg MO Bohannon IA C Cerroni WS
M Moss KS

J Coy MO E May IA C Godfrey WS
R Gentry IA

M Denmon MO D Kelly KS




S Moore MO R White MN




S Suggs MO R Cowels MN




W Eikmeier NE M Dixon MO




A DuFault ND





C Iverson SD













L Fields CA R Westbrook CA R Miller CA A Stover CA

A Smith AZ F Ezeli CA Frank Otis CA T Honeycutt CA
M Maynard AZ JD Luster CA J Underwood AZ A Marshall NV

W Donahue AZ

T Whitehead AZ









B Young FL C Parsons FL X Keeling AL J Carmichael CT

T Crocker NC A McFarland NH G Echenique NJ M Henderson TX

B Morningstar NH Jordan Crawford VA E Negedu NH M Marquis TX