Monday, October 24, 2011

D1 Nation's I-35 Challenge Explodes!

Over 100 quality players in the Classes of 2015, 2014, 2013 and 2012 converged on Austin LBJ High School to watch a bumper crop of ballers do their thing.  Several celebrities were on hand, including Wichita State and NBA alum Antonie Carr (watching his 2015 son, A.J. do his thing) and the great Ray Jackson of Michigan and Fab Five Fame who helped me judge the dunk contest. 
Michigan  Fab Five Alum Ray Jackson in the House

We'll have in depth coverage of the entire event over the next few days.  I'm getting ready to head out on the road for a couple of weeks and evaluate players at events in Phoenix and Las Vegas and to meet with several college coaching staffs, including Arizona, Arizona State,  UTEP, New Mexico and Arizona State as I make my way back home to Texas.  Taking the time to build these relationships and trust with college staffs are the foundation of what makes the D1 Nation and it's ability to place players a huge success. 

I will break down the event by Class year and also have an academic component for the brainiacs. A quick wrap up says that except for the Austin/Killeen freshmen holding off the bigger San Antonio squad in an overtime squeaker, that it was All San Antonio, all the time on Sunday as they took their Northern neighbors behind the woodshed.

Dunk Contest

The finals came down to 2012 W 6'6" Allex Austin of San Marcos, TX who is also the Nation's #1 prep high jumper at 7'2" and 2012 W 6'7" Taurean Prince Waller of San Antonio Warren (Long Island commit).  Both of their best dunks were spinning tomahawk slams.  Both myself and Ray Jackson felt it was unanimous that their wasn't much difference between the styles but it was Waller's combination of POWER and grace that gave him the win and the Inaugural I-35 Austin-San Antonio Challenge Dunk Title.  Honorable mention goes to 2012 PG Paul Baxter of Austin Bowie (Sam Houston State commit) who also showed his bounce. 
2012 Taurean Prince Waller of San Antonio Warren "dunkified" the crowd
Three Point Contest

The field was loaded with long distance gunners.  We had 4 different players hit 18-20 shots during the preliminaries. They were 2015 Logan Sneed (Cedar Park Vista Ridge), 2013 Napoleon Onyeje (Pflugerville), 2012 Collin Hart (San Marcos) and 2012 R.J. Rowan (Austin Westlake).  Rowan came on with a vengeance in the final as he blew away the Final Four with 21 makes and the Inaugural I-35 Austin-San Antonio Challenge Title.
2012 R.J. Rowan of Austin Westlake bags the three point contest.
Stay tuned for updates later today.