Bulldogs Nab Lenoir City Talent

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Does it not seem like the commitments come in waves when the
ice is first broken.

 

Maybe the guys are waiting for one to make the move then
they feel comfortable and the flood gates open.

 

The Class of 2010 received its 10th commitment
and fourth this week as talented forward Tyler
Hood (Lenoir City)
ended his recruitment and
pledged his wares to Southern Conference upstart Samford.

 

Hood, who played his summer hoops with the Tennessee
Travelers, was a hot commodity this summer with his unusual length and strong
fundamental skill set. The 6'6 talent does most of his damage with the face up
and short dribble drive but can use his array of post moves to score or drop a
short jumper if left open.

 

Samford, which is located in Birmingham,
is coached by Jimmy Tillette secures their second Tennessee prepstar in the past two years. If
you recall Gregg Wooten (Braircrest
Christian)
will suit up as a freshman for the Bulldogs this season.

 

Congrats to Tyler
and good luck on a superb senior campaign.

Memphis Guard Keeps the Tiger Pipeline Alive

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In the past few season the University of Memphis
has been basically void of homegrown talent.

 

Players such as Elliot
Williams (St. George's)
and Leslie McDonald (Braircrest Christian)
made the trip to the ACC instead
of staying on Beale Street.

 

New coach Josh Pastner has made it a priority to keep this
crop of hometown talent where they belong, at home.

 

First Joe Jackson
(White Station)
put his name on the Tigers future roster now his AAU
teammate will keep himself in Shelby
County as well.

 

Chris Crawford
(Sheffield)
made the tough decision to stay home when he declared for the
Conference USA power over Tennessee
at a press conference today.

 

Crawford, who ran this summer with the Memphis Magic Elite,
is an uber talented wing guard with explosive scoring skills and length to
become a big timer.

 

With Jackson and Crawford in the mix will Tarik Black (Ridgeway) be next....stay
tuned.

Prather Headed to the Sunshine State

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A great summer, a better July.

 

Put those equations into the mix and you get major interest
from colleges all over the country.

 

Casey Prather
(Jackson Northside)
made the most of his opportunities and has ended his
substantial recruitment pledging to become a Florida Gator.

 

A long list of schools was narrowed recently to Florida and Memphis
with the final decision pending.

 

Prather will continue a big tradition of Tennessee
hoopsters who have graced the Blue and Orange
including Lee Humphrey (Maryville)
and Corey Brewer (Portland).

 

Prather was all over the map in July running with the
Nashville Celtics and providing highlight material from Las
Vegas to Cincinnati
and other destinations in between.

 

Prather is a special player who will flourish in the Gators
up tempo style. His ability to score from the outside or use his exceptional
athleticism to finish in transition or off the dribble will serve him well in
the ultra-athletic SEC.

 

With his upcoming senior campaign on the horizon Prather can
now concentrate on improving his 24 points and 11 boards per game which helped
him finish as a finalist for the coveted Mr. Basketball award last season in
Class AA.

 

Congrats Casey and good luck in your senior season.

Memphis Wing Headed to the Big Ten

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Austin you better bring a jacket.

Austin Hollins (Germantown) has decided to end his substantial recruitment and will head to the Great White North and represent Tennessee for the Gophers of Minnesota. 

The talented wing parlayed a fantastic summer into heated interest from around the country but settled for the intense passion of Tubby Smith and the Big Ten power. 

Hollins can play either the two or three with a good outside stroke and some deft handles as well. His body will need some bulk not only for the physical Big Ten sytle but for those Minnesota winters. 

The folks at the Williams Arena will fall quickly for the charismatic and talented youngster with the ultra athletic game. 

Minnesota was a member of the 2009 NCAA Tournament field falling to Texas in the opening round. 

Falcon Guard Stays in State

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The summer between your junior and senior year of high school
is crucial for any potential D1 recruit.

 

Finding the right summer squad to run with could be vital
for your success or lack there of.

So when Robert Boyd (Fulton) was looking
for a team he turned to an out of state squad looking for a tough guard who
wouldn't be afraid to defend.

Who better than one of the defensive stalwarts for the two
time defending Class AA state champions.

The Worldwide Renegades toured the country in July and Boyd
made his presence felt on both ends of the floor.

For his efforts the 6'2 combo guard pledged to play his
college basketball today for Scott Sanderson and the Bison of Lipscomb
University.

Lipscomb finished 17-14 last season and play their hoops in
the up and coming Atlantic Sun Conference.

Boyd is a self-starter who needs little motivation to perform
on the court. Exceptionally well coached by Jody Wright, the slender scorer has
improved his overall offensive game to include sweet drops off the dribble and
an array of short jumpers all over the floor.

 Boyd joins his high school teammate, Jalen Steele, who committed
to Auburn last week and becomes the fifth
commitment in the class of 2010 for Tennessee.

Now Boyd can concentrate on helping his Falcons in their
quest for a three-peat in the ‘Boro this March.

Jackson Stays Home

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The speculation was always up in the air.

 

Where will he go, they would say and then the scenarios
would start to flow.

 

All along "The Real Thing" in his heart knew where his final
destination would be.

 

The hometown kid staying around to help usher in a new era
for a new coach and a new outlook for a program with a great deal of history
and success.

 

Joe Jackson (White
Station)
as you may have figured out is staying home and will attend the
University of Memphis and new coach Josh Pastner could not be more elated.

 

Jackson, who helped the Spartans win the Class AAA state
championship last season, is a national treasure with aspirations of the
McDonald's game and a future so bright he undoubtedly must wear shades.

 

He has been a star on the AAU circuit for three years
playing for various teams and I recall my first encounter with him as an
incoming freshman he attended our first ever Tennessee Prep Hoops Rankings and
Exposure Showcase held that year at CPA in Nashville.

 

The scrawny little kid was beasting everyone in the camp and
everyone in attendance were clamoring for a look at this young phenom.

 

I have enjoyed getting to know Joe and can't wait to see
what he has in store for his upcoming senior campaign.

 

Memphis of course plays in
Conference USA
and has been a national power for years on end. Coach Pastner could not be more
excited about the future addition of the kid who will be the cornerstone for
his squad for many years to come.

 

Congrats Joe and good luck to you in all you do my friend.

 

Golden Hurricanes Grab Memphis Guard

Once the first one comes it seems we get a small run after this.

Thomas Greer (West Carroll) went first to Austin Peay, followed by Mardracus Wade (Mitchell) to Arkansas now lets add a third player to the burgeoining 2010 commitment list.

Tim Peete (Memphis Central) decided to play his senior year worry free and committed to Conference USA power Tulsa.

Peete chose the Golden Hurricanes over interest from Minnesota, Baylor, MTSU, Tulane, North Texas State, Missouri, Houston and UTEP.

After not playing a great deal on the circuit this summer due to an injury, Peete is now fully recovered and ready to show his future mentor, Doug Wojcik, he can be a standout in Conference USA.

The Golden Hurricanes finished 25-11 last season before losing to Auburn in the second round of the NIT.

The Drake Makes His Choice

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Well friends I have good news, no make that great news and
bad news all in the same story.

I should say bad news for us in Tennessee but great news for The Drake.

 Mardracus Wade
(Mitchell)
has given his commitment to John Pelphrey and the Razorbacks of
Arkansas.

 We knew all along that Drake could play on this level. Drake
chose Arkansas over serious interest from Missouri, Mississippi
State and Alabama.

 He said Arkansas
has recruited him the longest and they need a guy like him who provides
leadership and toughness to step in and take over this program.

 Now the bad news, Mardracus will leave our fair state and
finish his senior campaign at Hargrave
Military Academy.

 A great move for Drake, as Kevin Keatts is one of the best
at getting young men prepared for the rigors of the SEC, but sad as we lose one
of our favorites for his senior season.

I will truly miss Drake and wish him nothing but success as
he embarks on his journey, he will always have a special place here at
Tennessee Prep Hoops.

 Love the Drake!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hunter Marches to Martin Methodist

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Brandon Hunter (Gallatin) waited till the end of the recruiting cycle but the talented senior guard will take his game down to Martin Methodist in Pulaski.

Hunter, who was one of the best guards in the MidState area this past season, will be a solid contributor immediately for Coach Andy Sharpe and the Red Hawks.

His ability to score off the dribble combined with a solid outside shot makes him a valuable commodity in the tough TranSouth Conference, which is a member of the NAIA. 

 

Cougars Grab Chattanooga Point

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After weeks of deliberation some things just seem to fall into place.

Stephen Cook (Chattanooga Christian) knew in one way shape or form his future was going to include basketball.

He fielded several offers and opportunities and in the end decided that junior college would be his best option.

The 5'11 point guard will take his talents to the TJCCAA and play for Coach Lee Cigliano and the Cougars of Cleveland State Community College.

Cleveland State is getting a smart and heady leader who should grab the reigns from his first day on campus. Cook, who balled this summer with the Tennessee Travelers, has the ability to score when the situation calls for it, but his strength is running a team and getting his scorers the ball in position to do their thing.

Congrats to Stephen and I look forward to watching him compete on the next level.