Now that the University of Kentucky has won their 8th National Championship, the high school and NCAA hoops universe is abuzz over where the nation’s top two recruits Shabazz Muhammed and Nerlens Noel, will be playing in college next season.
While both are set to make their college decisions live on ESPNU this Wednesday @7PM, during the network’s annual signing day special, Muhammed and Noel were busy representing their country in the 2012 Nike Hoops Summit.
In the annual HS hoops showcase, the Team USA Junior National Select Team takes on an all star team made up of the best prep players from all around the World, and is played at The Rose Garden, home of the Portland Trailblazers.
In past year’s, the event has served as a springboard for the careers of many American and International HS hoops prospects like Dirk Nowitzki, Enes Kanter, and Bismack Biyombo, who parlayed an outstanding showing last season against USA’s vaunted frontcourt of Anthony Davis(Kentucky), Rakeem Christmas(Syracuse), and Michael James McAdoo(UNC) into becoming an NBA Lottery selection.
While Team USA lost to the World Select team for only the 4th time in the event’s history 84-75, there were several noteworthy individual efforts that highlighted the event. Most impressive was the play of Muhammed, who set records for scoring with 35 points, most FG attempted with 19, and tied the mark for most FG made with 10.
UCLA recruit Kyle “Slo-Mo” Anderson also had an outstanding game, consisting of 12 points, a record tying 10 rebounds, to go with 4 assists and 3 steals. Big man Nerlens Noel added 5 points, 4 rebounds, and a game high 4 blocks.
But it was the outstanding play of Team World’s Andrew Wiggins and Anthony Bennett, both hailing from Canada, that stole the show. Incoming junior Wiggins, who has been on the NBA’s radar since middle school, led the way with 20 points and 7 rebounds, while still uncommitted senior Bennett grabbed a game high 11 rebounds to go with 7 points, including a key 3 point basket late to secure the victory.
Check out the Top 10 Plays at the 2012 Nike Hoops Summit:
Allen Moll has been a lifelong NBA and NCAA College Basketball fan who watches and studies games religiously, and coaches youth basketball in his native Lehigh Valley region of Pennsylvania. Allen has also provided content to Bleacherreport.com, Upperdeckblog.com, Cleveland.com, CSN Philly.com, Buckets Magazine, in addition to being a tenured NBA and NCAA columnist for TheHoopDoctors.com.