"It's All About The Game"

Practice Notes: Takeover 17u/16u Black 5.16.03






Ron Bailey, Publisher

Session was about skill development.


Following are notes from Team Takeover’s 17u/16u practice on 5.16.13

Get in the gym: More of a skill development session than practice per se – the guys went through drill after drill – some of the coaches were still disappointed in the proceedings. Not that those who attended didn’t work hard, as they did. The numbers there were not what expected.

“You guys have to get guys in here” said assistant coach Ray Brewer afterward; a former player at Eleanor Roosevelt HS (MD) and Kansas State, Brewer was known for his intensity and focus, and demands that of all the players in Takeover’s program.

Slightly over 10 current players showed up for this session.

That's Ray Brewer working the mitts against sophomore guard Bryant Crawford.

Josh is admired: Headed to Villanova this upcoming season, Josh Hart strolled into the gym after practice started. Clearly having lifted weights, Hart could be excused for not participating, as he’s been working.

Not. As soon as he got in the gym and stretched, Hart did every drill the current Takeover players performed, and at a high level. He even rattled the rims a few times.

“It’s good. It’s a good program” said Hart of coming back and working with the organization. “It helps me get ready for the next level”.

It was obvious Takeover’s present guys looked up to Hart, the 6’4”, 210 pound swingman. Of that, he noted “It’s definitely an honor, because we have great kids here”.

Alexander has acclimated well: In his first year with Takeover, Corey Alexander, the former UVA standout and NBA performer, has taken the organization’s 16u team regins, leading them to just one loss and two tourney ‘chips. Takeover is glad to have him, and vice versa.

“I love it”, said Alexander afterward. “This group is easy to work with. They want to learn…I’m happy to be a part of it”.

On Takeover as an entity, Alexander, who has also coached elsewhere in travel team ball noted “This organization, when it comes to practice, operates very similar to what a college program does”.

A former college coach at Hampden-Sydney, Alexander shared he hopes to be in the college ranks again. Watching him work, there is little doubt Alexander can coach, implement game plans, and recruit.

Player notes:

Quadree ‘Q’ Smith – 6’8”, 225 pound junior center, Paul VI (VA) – Holding offers from “UNC-Greensboro, Rider, Radford, Florida Gulf-Coast, Florida International, Tennessee and Nebraska”, Smith or ‘Q’ is a pivot banger with sweet feet and soft hands, one that excels working around the tin, despite not largely playing over the rim. He has a great feel for how to use his width, and feel contact.

Going forward, Smith must continue re-making his body, which will allow for more explosion, while also extending his mid-range jumpshot’s range and consistency.

That's 'Q' Smith in drills.

Rumors existed he would leave Paul VI for another high school, which Smith denied. He also continued to reject any discussion of playing football, saying “I’ve never played”. With his size, balletic footwork and hands, Smith has gridiron star offensive/defensive lineman written all over him.

Martin Geben – 6’9”, 225 pound junior center, St. Maria Gorietti (MD) – Quickly rising in recruiting footprint, Geben is developing into a good back to the basket player that will bang, can hit the midrange jumper, and rebounds. He’s working on becoming more athletic.

Keith Stevens, Takeover’s Director indicated “GW, Dayton, Maryland, Marquette, Villanova, Penn State, UVA” have all offered Geben, a native of the former USSR. Dayton is likely recruiting him the hardest at this point, while Notre Dame holds a certain gleam in Geben’s eye. According to media reports, the Domers have also offered.

(For the record, Geben did not participate in this practice).

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