VJ King still considers Ohio State the home state school. “I can say this, the relationship (with Ohio State) hasn’t changed one bit since our departure from Ohio,” Vincent King, V.J.’s father, told cleveland.com via phone from Virginia. That doesn’t mean the Buckeyes are a shoo-in when King finally makes his college decision. As you can imagine, the No. 2 small forward and No. 17 overall player in the class of 2016 according to 247Sports has a pretty impressive list of suitors. Ohio State basketball 2016 target V.J. King View full size V.J. King goes up for a dunk during a St. Vincent-St. Mary practice last season. Lonnie Timmons III, The Plain Dealer It includes Kentucky, Kansas, Louisville, Syracuse, UConn, Arizona … You get it. King is a hot commodity.
Syracuse added its second defensive end this week on Thursday afternoon. After Coatesville (Pa.) High School target Amir Ealey verbally committed to the Orange late Sunday night, Iona (New Rochelle, N.Y.) Preparatory School product Qaadir Sheppard followed suit less than four days later. Iona Prep announced Sheppard’s pledge on Twitter
The Irish are the hosts of the tournament, but they aren’t doing themselves any favor with the schedule. St. Benedict’s is ranked No. 19 in the country by MaxPreps. Off to a 5-0 start behind standout sophomore Trevon Duval, St. Benedict’s can really score, as the team has hit at least 71 points in each win. The Irish are no slouches themselves, as they beat St. Edward and Youngstown Ursuline last weekend to start their season. Led by senior Josh Williams, an Akron commit, the Irish might play four guards at a time.
There aren’t many 6-8, athletic players with tremendous basketball instincts and a high skill level, but 2017 small forward Jarred Vanderbilt is this type of player. The lefty for Houston (Texas) Victory Prep has that unique eye popping game that makes a scout search for a comparison. At the Tarkanian Classic, Vanderbilt said Lamar Odom, Penny Hardeway and Kevin Durant are ones he has heard. Having coached against Odom when he was at Rhode Island, I’m going with that comparison. Vanderbilt is an off the charts passer with a strong handle and a tough midrange scoring game. He also has great hands and an instinctual feel for rebounding.