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tigerbrotha12

2020 Men's Basketball Recruiting Thread

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Here is the Coop article you were asking about @Tiger

 

By:  | 

IRVING, Texas – Even as the No. 1 overall player in USA Today Sports Chosen 25 for 2020, Sharife Cooper doesn’t need any help staying motivated, whether he’s playing against a fellow Chosen 25 player or an unknown player hungry to make a name.

Sure, he’s aware that the bull’s-eye on his back has grown since he became top dog a few weeks back, but he’s more driven by the basketball-sized chip on his shoulder from being underrated for so long.

“As hard as different players are gonna come at me; I’m coming harder at them,” Cooper said. “I still feel like I have to prove things. The last thing I feel is satisfied; I work harder now than I ever have.”

Cooper’s grind is evident after checking in at No. 2 in the Nike EYBL in both scoring (26.7 ppg.) and assists (7.9 apg.) for AOT (Ga.).

He pumped in 32 points and dished out seven assists in a 89-79 win over Team United (N.C.) on Saturday.

Last season, Cooper was named Offensive MVP of the Nike EYBL and led the prestigious Nike Peach Jam in scoring and assists.

He followed that up by leading McEachern High School (Powder Springs, Ga.) to a perfect 32-0 record and the first boys basketball state title in the school’s history, averaging 28.6 points, 8.7 assists, six rebounds and 4.1 steals a game last season. The Indians finished No. 3 overall in the USA Today Super 25.

Cooper was subsequently named ALL-USA Player of the Year.

That production has every school from Kentucky to Auburn to Duke, among many others, lining up trying to lure him to their schools.

Cooper recently had an in-home with Auburn and plans to reschedule an in-home with Kentucky in the near future.

For now, he said he’s laser-focused on closing out the Nike EYBL’s regular season strong with AOT, who is sitting at 3-0 during this session, then “putting everything” in to USA Basketball.

“It means so much to me to be able to play for my country so I’m excited about that tryout,” Cooper said. “More than anything I love competition. I feel like that’s what separates me on the court. There’s nothing friendly about me out there; I’m there to win, period.”

 

Edited by GwillMac6
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Just now, Gene Loblaw said:

Interesting. 

 

Handsome level just adequate though

LMAO!!!! This gimmick gets me every time.

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1 hour ago, GwillMac6 said:

For me if we get him we have a decent shot to get Boston. If we do not get Coop we have no shot with Boston. If Coop was not highly considering AU I doubt Boston would be making these visits to AU. He is the alpha. The guy everyone gravitates too.

I know about his relationship with okoro and Boston. I was wondering does he have a relationship with anybody else or is it something we are saying because we want him. Yes he's the alpha on the AOT team. 

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1 hour ago, GwillMac6 said:

 

Called this a few weeks ago. I knew it was just a matter of time with the way he's been playing

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Chef Bruce probably personally cooked breakfast for all these young men this morning. And Steven most definitely prepared the trays and served them all breakfast in bed. Coach Bowman probably did some next level turndown service and left them some sweet cash and a mint on their pillows. Expecting another commitment here soon gents. Feels great to have the best b-ball coach in the league that also has a degree in hotel management from Cornell

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3 minutes ago, Gene Loblaw said:

Chef Bruce probably personally cooked breakfast for all these young men this morning. And Steven most definitely prepared the trays and served them all breakfast in bed. Coach Bowman probably did some next level turndown service and left them some sweet cash and a mint on their pillows. Expecting another commitment here soon gents. Feels great to have the best b-ball coach in the league that also has a degree in hotel management from Cornell

 

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2 hours ago, GwillMac6 said:

That production has every school from Kentucky to Auburn to Duke, among many others, lining up trying to lure him to their schools.

This sentence alone makes me really happy

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I had my own Gene Loblaw crystal ball pick for a Rongie Gordon commitment this weekend but maybe I was just misinterpreting the swirling ether in my ole ball

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Nathan King • AuburnSports.com

As his 7-foot frame towered over a scrum of media — Auburn defensive line coach Rodney Garner pointing and mentioning to a football recruit, “We need him on the D-line” — 5-star basketball center 

 listed off the sport’s elite as the programs he’s most strongly considering.

Luckily for Tiger fans, Bruce Pearl’s successes now have Auburn in that upper echelon, alongside traditional powers and blue bloods.

Kessler named Duke, Virginia, Gonzaga, North Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia and Auburn when asked where his mind has been in terms of a commitment, which he hopes to make in “probably October, maybe November.” Michigan was also on that list until 13-year coach John Beilein took the Cleveland Cavaliers’ gig this offseason.

A rising senior at Woodward Academy in College Park, Ga., Kessler is a family legacy at Georgia as both his father and uncle played basketball for the Bulldogs. He’s not hiding from the fact that he was born and raised in the red and black, but in terms of the effect on his recruitment, Kessler said he’s giving every school an equal shot.

“For sure, I can confirm my family is Georgia,” Kessler said. “… But I’m completely open right now. Definitely. Completely open.”

And after his visit to the Plains for the 10th annual Big Cat Weekend recruiting event, the No. 4 center in the country has Auburn taking a huge step in his recruitment.

“Auburn definitely has a shot, more than anything other school,” Kessler said. “They’re in my top 3, probably because it’s so close to home and the appeal of Coach Pearl.”

Kessler’s infatuation with Pearl and his coaching style amplified this past season as the nation saw the Tigers shoot and defend their way to a magical Final Four run — the first in the program’s history.

“You can really tell all his players play for him,” Kessler said. “It’s all together — camaraderie. That’s why they went so far — because everyone’s playing together.”

Auburn’s emphasis on a 3-point barraging offense — even from the frontcourt players — has Kessler intrigued, as well.

“I mean, you look at all the bigs that shoot — Austin Wiley not really — but everyone else,” Kessler said. “Just the versatility and how you can the bigs in the perimeter, in the post, the high post. It’s appealing.”

Kessler will take “one or two more” official visits before his fall commitment. It doesn’t seem likely Auburn will get one of those, but with his home in Georgia just an hour away — not to mention his family’s lake house at Lake Martin — Kessler said he will likely take a few unofficial visits to the Plains after developing relationships with some of the current players at Big Cat Weekend.

“You look at the recruits that go into Auburn — they’re not 4- or 5-star guys,” Kessler said. “Coach Pearl takes these talented players — I’m not dogging them at all — he takes them and develops them and makes them play together. And that’s how you win.”

Kessler’s stock has exploded over the past year; he didn’t used to be an elite talent. He relates to Pearl’s rag-tag Auburn teams of the past two seasons because, in his words, he used to be “some no-name guy; just a tall, white, skinny guy who can shoot a little bit.”

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21 hours ago, Gene Loblaw said:

Studs studs studs studs. Some of them probably need to be properly covered in sunscreen but that’s fine as long as they can hoop

It just means they’re inside playing a lot of b-ball!

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I still feel like BJ makes the most sense to be a Tiger (other than Sharife, obv), but this Walker kid makes alot of sense too. Dearth of real center bodies, proximity, a big that can shoot. IDK how mobile he is, but seeing as how we'll be inevitably slower anyway, maybe it's a blessing in disguise. 

 

Per 247, Walker is to their class what Cooper is to ours, in terms of importance. I dont think we'll get a commit until the last day possible, even if he does end up leaning. Thankfully, with that being the case, they'll have to ease up on resources devoted to some of their other top choices (which mirror ours) and we can accordingly push harder

Edited by Dual-Threat Rigby

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7 hours ago, Dual-Threat Rigby said:

Thankfully, with that being the case, they'll have to ease up on resources devoted to some of their other top choices (which mirror ours) and we can accordingly push harder

Why?

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Kentucky guard intrigued by AU's 'dynasty'

 
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This combo guard went 8-of-17 from long range during his first two Nike EYBL league games. (Jay G. Tate/AuburnSports.com)
Jay G. Tate • AuburnSports.com
 didn't necessarily take Auburn seriously at first.

To be fair, the Tigers first contacted him after his freshman season in 2016. They finished 11-20 that season and Bruce Pearl's promises of improvement seemed spurious, though everything Pearl told Powell to expect during the subsequent seasons has unfolded like a film script.

Then Auburn made the Final Four. Powell, a 6-foot-5 combo guard from suburban Louisville, Ky., immediately changed his view.

"It opened everybody’s eyes. It shows that they can do everything that any other program can do," Powell said after making an official visit to the Plains last weekend. "They’re just beginning their dynasty right now. That’s a big thing for them."

Pearl and his staff believe Powell can help push the program to even bigger heights. Though Auburn's interest was piqued when Powell was playing for the Atlanta Celtics as a youngster, Powell became a nationally known recruit as a sophomore after averaging 11 points per game and shooting better than 50 percent from long range for Louisville (Ky.) Trinity.

Powell's journey then took an odd turn. He elected to spent his junior season at Montverde (Fla.) Academy, but says he became homesick and transferred back to his hometown school — North Oldham High in Goshen, Ky. He was forced to sit out his junior season due to the transfer, which prompted some schools to back down in their pursuit of his signature.

Auburn wasn't one of them.

That choice proved fruitful when Powell resumed his career this summer with the Indy Heat. He scored 28 points during his first game in the Nike EYBL summer league and went 8-of-17 from long range during his first two games. The EYBL moved its three-point line back to international distance this summer, which means Powell likely won't be affected by the NCAA's decision to move its three-point line back ahead of the 2019-20 season.

"The new technology ... makes it easier to get in the gym whenever you want and get up a couple hundred shots in the morning," Powell said. "Right now, we’re expanding my range. That’s definitely valuable at the next level."

eaking most often with Auburn, Ohio State, Xavier, Georgia Tech and Tennessee during the past few months. Kentucky has been keeping tabs on Powell as well, but also has its eye on several more high-profile players.

The Tigers, with their up-tempo style and affinity for long-range shooting, clearly have captured Powell's interest. Now that he's toured campus, seen Auburn Arena, spoken with recruiting contact Steven Pearl on his home turf and taken in the university, Powell says Auburn will be a major factor when he makes his decision.

He's hoping to choose a school in August.

"Everybody is a shooter here," Powell said. "It’s an open system, a run-and-gun system, which a lot of guards like. It fits my play style. It’s a place that’s really interesting to me. They were one of the first ones to offer me, so it’s a connection we’ve had for a long time."

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