During the downtime before Saturday’s Final Four games, several televised high school basketball events make for an enticing opportunity for college basketball fans to become acquainted with next year’s incoming freshmen.
The largest circle on the calendar always goes around the McDonald’s All-American basketball game, and the boys contest tips off on Wednesday night at 9:30 ET on ESPN. Unlike past years, the rosters for this game did not have any notable misses, in terms of eligible players not invited to play. This year’s contest also features a smattering of currently undecided players that may have notable impacts on next year’s season, once they make their decisions.
While the hardcore fans have already bragged on their school’s respective McDonald’s All-American game participants, there are many programs still in the mix to add another Burger Baller, or in Kentucky’s case, a few more elite talents to next year’s teams.
The undecided players in the game, are as follows:
Amile Jefferson, 6-8, F, Friends Central (Pa.), East
Said to be making a decision “any day now”, for the last three months, at one time it seemed like Duke was inevitable to wrestle Jefferson away from NC State, but Villanova, Kentucky and others won’t go away. Jefferson (above) can step in as a combo forward role and play right away for the aforementioned programs.
Tony Parker, 6-9, C, Miller Grove (Ga.), East
The true center still has a laundry list of programs in the mix for him. For a time, some believed that Ohio State was the program to beat, but UCLA has stuck around, and Memphis, Duke, Kansas, Georgetown and Georgia are all still on the list. This recruitment is anybody’s guess right now.
Anthony Bennett, 6-8, PF, Findlay Prep (Nev.), West
The native of Canada hasn’t given many insights into his recruitment. He’s yet to make an official visit, and it doesn’t appear that geography is a factor, as his school list stretches from Washington to Florida, with Oregon, UNLV and Kentucky in between. There’s a number of theories regarding the top-10 prospect, but not much hard information. He’s physical enough to be a mismatch almost every time he steps on the court.
Shabazz Muhammad, 6-6, SG, Bishop Gorman (Nev.), West
The slashing wing has many believing his recruitment will come down to UCLA or Kentucky, but don’t tell that to fans of UNLV, Duke, or Kansas. Muhammad has been on every campus of his choices a number of times, and has a fairly packed schedule of events prior to his announcement in approximately two weeks. For at least a year, many have believed UCLA was the team to beat, and the truth in that will be known for sure in a short time.
Deonta Pollard, 6-7, SF, Kemper County (Miss.), West
The expectation that Mississippi State could be the team to beat for Pollard is out the window with the Bulldogs not having a coach. With Mississippi State hampered by their coaching situation, Texas, Kentucky or Missouri could pull ahead. Alabama, Georgetown or perhaps others could still be the hunt for Pollard, who possesses athleticism that puts him in a rare category. He’s an immediate starter virtually anywhere he ends up.
The game should be exciting, and lacking defense, as always, so another event may be of interest to college basketball recruiting fans that seek to watch basketball in a “real” game environment.