Kelly Kline/Under Armour

Rivals releases new rankings for the Class of 2015

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Kelly Kline/Under Armour

The Class of 2015 just finished their most important recruiting summer, and after spending all spring and summer on the road evaluating these prospects, Rivals has released a brand new top 150.

And as you might expect, if you paid any attention this summer, Ben Simmons is ranked as the No. 1 overall prospect in the class. Simmons is a versatile, 6-foot-8 forward who had a couple of statement performances throughout July. His ability to handle the ball and pass is what sets him apart in a class that lacks some star power.

MORE: Ben Simmons proves he’s No. 1 | Simmons does not make Team Australia

Jaylen Brown, a powerful 6-foot-7 wing from Georgia, came in No. 2 in the class, which isn’t much of a surprise, either. While Simmons is the consensus No. 1 player in the class, Brown is generally thought of as his biggest challenger to the No. 1 spot. Scout even ranks him as the No. 1 player in the class.

MORE: Jaylen Brown’s spring proves he has a professional mindset

Malik Newman, a high-volume scoring guard that can run the point when need be, comes in at No. 3 while 6-foot-11 center Skal Labissiere — Can you guys help me get the nickname ‘the Haitian Sensation’ going? — comes in at No. 4. Labissiere battled a back injury throughout his junior year which caused him to slide a bit in the rankings, but his size, athleticism and ability to face-up offensively may make him the best NBA prospect in the class.

MORE: Labissiere is considering Europe, but does Europe want him?

Other notables:

  • Arizona’s trio of five-star recruits all found themselves ranked in the top 25, with Justin Simon their “worst” commit at No. 21.
  • Kentucky’s lone commitment in the Class of 2015, Charles Matthews, checks in at No. 56.
  • Donovan Mitchell, who is committed to Louisville, shot from No. 101 all the way up to No. 30 in the class. Ray Spalding, another Cardinal commit, climbed up to No. 39.
  • Only two of the top ten and seven of the top 25 players in the class are committed.

Knee injury temporarily sidelines Memphis assistant

Toronto Raptors vs Charlotte Hornets
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With practices beginning this weekend, not only are players looking to avoid the injury bug but their coaches are as well. And in the case of Memphis, the Tigers won’t have one of their assistants on the court for a little while due to a knee injury.

Assistant coach Damon Stoudamire, who returned to Josh Pastner’s staff this summer after a two-year stint at Arizona, suffered the injury during a recent workout according to L. Jason Smith of the Memphis Commercial-Appeal. And Stoudamire will require surgery, which will put him on the shelf for a little bit.

“He was working out himself and I think he thought he was in his rookie year,” Pastner said. “We think he’s got a torn meniscus, which will require surgery and put him out for a couple of days.”

Stoudamire isn’t the only assistant coach working through pain either. Syracuse’s Mike Hopkins, who is also Jim Boeheim’s heir apparent as head coach, suffered a neck injury body surfing during a family vacation last month. Hopkins spent some time in a neck brace while putting players through workouts as a result of the injury.

As for the Tigers, they’ll have a mixture of experience on the perimeter and youth in the front court as they look to get back to the NCAA tournament after missing out last season. Among the newcomers are talented forwards Dedric and K.J. Lawson, with experienced guards such as Kedren Johnson, Trahson Burrell and Ricky Tarrant (grad transfer from Alabama) expected to be key contributors on the perimeter.

Duke figuring out approach for this season

Duke University head basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski speaks with the media about the Blue Devils' 2013-14 basketball season, Wednesday, March 26, 2014, in Durham, N.C. (Chuck Liddy/Raleigh News & Observer/MCT via Getty Images)
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Duke is coming off of a national championship but the roster will look almost completely different for the 2015-16 season. That means last season’s approach to things on the offensive and defensive end will have to change and head coach Mike Krzyzewski mentioned to reporters on Friday how the Blue Devils are still figuring some things out.

“We’re putting in a different offensive system, to personalize it for these guys,” Krzyzewski said to reporters. “And a different defensive system so that we can max out on the talents that they have.

“We’re really proud of our team. I think we’re going to be a really good team.”

Without Jahlil Okafor in the middle, Duke’s offense could shift to a mostly perimeter-oriented team, as the wing and guard depth is superior for this year’s group.  Coach K and his staff making adjustments to schemes to fit personnel is a nice move from the Hall of Famer, as he’s done a better job in recent years of making adjustments like this after his stint with USA Basketball.

As the program moves on from Okafor, Tyus Jones, Justise Winslow and Quinn Cook, it’ll be intriguing to see who emerges as a potential go-to offensive player early in the season and how Duke’s offense potentially evolves as the season wears on.