Wednesday begins another five-day live recruiting period for Division-I coaches and, along with the events going on in Las Vegas, “Live in AC” begins in Atlantic City, N.J.
Below is a preview of the 16U division, which feature high-major talent and should draw high-major coaches to the stands to watch and evaluate. Check out NBCSports.com’s preview of the 17U right here, as well.
Marquee Player 16U: Dwayne Morgan, Baltimore’s Finest
UNLV has been hot on the trail of this Top 15 recruit from the Class of 2014. Uber-athletic and full of potential, the 6-7, 190-pound forward has a bevy of high-major offers, including from Georgetown, Florida, LSU, Miami, Maryland, NC State, Missouri, South Florida, and Seton Hall.
Roy Williams and the Tar Heels are even showing interest, of late.
Morgan is still learning how to harness all of the physical skills that he has, but his athleticism and intensity on both ends of the floor make his game very malleable and appealing to college coaches.
Favorite to Win 16U: Team Takeover DC
The backcourt combination of Phil Booth and Dion Wiley make Team Takeover one of the Top 5 16U programs in the country.
Wiley is a silky smooth shooting guard with offers from schools that include Georgetown, Maryland, and Rutgers, while Booth runs the point and has similar interest and offers, including those same three schools as Wiley, plus Indiana, Seton Hall, Villanova, and others.
Takeover begins in Pool K, along with the New Jersey Roadrunners and U-Play (Can.).
Team to Keep an Eye on 16U: DC Assault Gold
Led by guard Romelo Trimble, DC Assault is battling it out with Team Takeover for supremacy in the Washington, D.C. area. Byron Hawkins, who could likely be headed to a mid-major-type school at the collegiate level, rounds out the backcourt.
As a side note, Karl Towns, who played for John Calipari on the Dominican National Team during Olympic qualifying, will not be playing for Sports U.
Player to Keep an Eye on 16U: Abdul-Malik Abu, Expressions Elite
At Hoop Group’s Summer Jam Fest, one Division-I assistant called him “a young Emeka Okafor,” and its warranted. The 6-8 forward has trimmed down since last year, adding muscle and becoming explosive around the rim.
Tom Izzo and Michigan State recently offered the rising junior, adding to his impressive list that already includes Cincinnati, Iowa State, Providence, and Rutgers. Abu is an elite rebounder and effective low-post player around the rim, and is working to develop his game outside of the paint.
He will likely be playing without high-major counterpart Jared Terrell, who sprained his ankle during that same Hoop Group tournament this past week.
Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_