"It's All About The Game"

A Sunday of hoops






Ron Bailey, Publisher

Talent was on display this mid-December day.


January 2, 2014 - December is a hot month for high school hoops, one that affords special matchups as teams are generally not yet in the mix of conference play. Sunday, December 15th was just such a day.

Following are players observed during two events that day, the Bullis Holiday Tournament and Gonzaga Classic.

George Papagiannis - 7'1", 260 pound junior center, Westtown (PA) - Having come to America from Greece this year, Papagiannis is an unknown entity that will soon be well known; he has good hands, mobility and length, is comfortable with the ball in his hands, rim runs, protects the rims, boxes out and hustles. He's tracking to be a big time prospect.

Papagiannis didn't get the ball as much as he should, so it was hard to judge his back to the basket game, but as with most young bigs, that can surely be improved. Expect him to increase strength, though George is not a string bean - he has a good base and can easily hold more weight.

Though he's adjusting to the American game, Maryland, Indiana, Georgetown and others were on hand to see Papagiannis, who will be heavily desired on the travel team circuit this summer.

That's Cordel Mearite on the move.

Cordel Mearite - 6'2", 180 pound senior guard/forward, Chavez (DC) - A 3.93 student, Mearite plays smartly, doing whatever is necessary to win, including defending, driving, rebounding and scrapping. Mearite is a winning ball player.
Going forward, expect him to extend his shooting range - he's been doing so steadily - and fine tune ball handling, which is considerably better than before.

Bridgewater and Virginia Wesleyan have expressed interest. Is a D3 program no-brainer.

Jared Nickens - 6'5", 175 pound senior wing, Westtown (PA) - Headed to Maryland next year, Nickens is a sweet shooting wing player, capable of tickling the twine in half and full court situations. The guy has a smooth shoot, generally releasing the ball on balance, and confidence. He's a big time shooter.

Nickens has to get stronger, allowing him to take bumps as driving and to defend more aggressively. Expanded ball handling will allow for better getting into the lane.

J.C. Wright - 5'10", 180 pound senior point guard, Coolidge (DC) - Though he was just getting back into the flow of things, and resultantly admitted his conditioning needed work, Wright still was able to lead Coolidge, finding people and pressuring the ball. He's a tough player that is a solid ball handler, and still desires to improve that skill.

Shepherd, CIAA schools and others are showing interest in Wright.

Jamaal Greenwood - 6'2", 175 pound senior combo guard, Bullis (MD) - Greenwood is a fearless driver that can and will pull up from distance. Is really dangerous in scatter court situations, where he makes it happen.

Given that he's recently embraced the point guard aspecet of combo guy, Greenwood desires "a place to develop into a combo", for college. Add "Close to home and place to play early" to his criteria.

Philly U has offer4ed, while Central Arkansas, St. Francis (PA) and others have shown interest.

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