With high school basketball playoffs getting under way, I thought this would be a good time to check in on the local hoops recruiting scene.
Enter Jide Sodipo of MidAtlanticHoops.com, who was kind enough to answer 'Five questions' (via e-mail) about that very topic.
1.) Has Sean Mosley exceeded expectations this season? What elements of his game have improved since his junior year? What type of impact do you see him making at Maryland?
Sean Mosley is doing the same thing he has done at St. Frances for the last three years, and that’s winning. As a freshman, he led his team to a Baltimore Catholic League tournament championship. The only improvement this year from previous years is that he’s hitting his outside jump shot with more consistency.
Mark my words, Mosley is going to make a major impact at Maryland just from his leadership, his will to win and his ability to change the game from all aspects (scoring, rebounds, steals e.g.). He reminds me of former UNC star Rashad McCants, now with the Minnesota Timberwolves.
2.) How has Henry Sims fared for Mount St. Joseph? What improvements has he made between his junior and senior years? What do you expect from him at Georgetown?
Sims has done a great job stepping into the leadership role and accepting the go-to-guy responsibility for the Gaels in the team-oriented style of coach Pat Clatchey. He has become a force to be reckoned with on both ends of the floor. His back-to-the-basket post moves have improved tremendously, and he has always been a good low-post passer and rebounder. Now he has become more of an all-around force. I expect him to continue the great tradition of the Hoyas big men.
As a senior, Sims is way ahead of Roy Hibbert development-wise when Hibbert was coming from Georgetown Prep. I know that because I had the opportunity to scout him for four years and he was a project all throughout his prep career.
3.) Who are some of the best unsigned seniors in the Baltimore area?
The best available seniors right now have to start with Brandon Greene, a 6-foot-6 power forward from Towson Catholic who has really come into his own. Greene is a solid mid-major prospect who can rebound, run the floor, finish strong around the basket and also hit the mid-range jumper.
Five-foot-nine point guard Jamar Briscoe from Cardinal Gibbons has proven it in his senior year that he is more than capable of playing the position that he has been criticized about most of his career.
Devon Branch, a 6-foot-5 swingman from Aberdeen is not known to a lot of people, but this young man can flat-out play. And also Omar Strong, a 5-foot-8 point guard from Douglass, is a typical Baltimore-bred guard -- tough, small, but competitive.
Other players to watch include Anthony Oquendo (6-4 WF St. Frances), Byron Westmoreland (6-4 SG Mervo), Dwayne Wheeler (6-1 P-SG Mt. Carmel). Check MidAtlanticHoops.com for the Top Available/Unsigned Prospects in the area.
4.) Several Baltimore-area sophomores have gotten a lot of major recruiting attention
already. Who are some of your favorites? What do their recruiting pictures look like?
The Baltimore area has four of the 10 and six of the top 15 prospects in the Mid Atlantic Hoops area for the class of 2010. The class is led by Roscoe Smith, a talented 6-foot-7 wing forward from Walbrook, who’s currently getting recruiting interest from Georgetown (offer), Maryland (offer), Texas, Connecticut (offer) and Texas A & M.
Eric Atkins, a 6-foot-1 point guard from Mount St. Joseph, is the real deal and is rated as one of the best point guards in the Mid Atlantic Hoops area. He’s getting interest from Maryland, Georgetown, Kansas State, Pittsburgh and Virginia to name a few.
One of the most interesting prospects is Carl “C.J” Fair, a 6-foot-7, smooth, lefty shooting guard from City. He’s getting recruiting interest from NC State, Wake Forest, Georgetown, Maryland, Virginia, Texas A & M and Pittsburgh.
Also Jonathan Graham, a 6-foot-8 power forward from Calvert Hall, is going to make a major impact in the BCL/MIAA next season. Graham is the son of former Terrapins great Ernie Graham. All preliminary indications point to the Terrapins as a leader [in his recruitment].
Also, there are a few more sophomores with potential to be solid high-major prospects by the end of summer, depending on their development. They are Donte Holmes, a 6-foot-3 SG from St. Frances, and Jordan Latham, a 6-foot-8 PF/C from City.
5.) How are some of the local DI colleges faring in local recruiting? Who are some good local players that have committed to those schools?
Towson got itself a good prospect in Troy Franklin, a 5-foot-11 point guard from Mount Carmel.
The Eagles of Coppin State also inked a Mid Atlantic Top 50 prospect in Justin McCoy, a 5-foot-10 combo guard from Mount St. Joseph (Baltimore).
Loyola signed one of the area’s unsung heroes in 6-foot-8 power forward/center Josh Wiegand, who seems to impress me more and more every time I see him play.
And last but not least, Morgan State might have the best recruit so far, and it’s not a player, but a coach. Longtime Baltimore Select and local AAU coach Keith Goodie joining the Bears staff is something that is going to make an already strong staff even stronger locally.