From our friends at USA Basketball:
Twenty-four players have accepted invitations to attend the 2012 USA Basketball Men’s U18 National Team Training camp June 5-12 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center (USOTC) in Colorado Springs, Colo., including one player with college experience and three players who represented the USA in the 2012 Nike Hoop Summit. The USA Basketball Men’s Junior National Team committee issued the player invitations.
While rising sophomore Jarnell Stokes (University of Tennessee/Memphis, Tenn.) is the lone collegian attending camp, graduating high school seniors Gary Harris (Hamilton Southeastern/Fishers, Ind.); James Robinson (DeMatha Catholic H.S./Mitchellville, Md.); and Rasheed Sulaimon (Strake Jesuit College Prep/Houston, Texas) suited up for the USA at the 15th annual Nike Hoop Summit.
Also from the Class of 2012 are: Ryan Arcidiacono (Neshaminy H.S./Langhorne, Pa.); Robert Carter (Thomasville H.S./Thomasville, Ga.); Sam Dekker (Sheboygan Lutheran H.S./Sheboygan, Wis.); Kris Dunn (New London H.S./Oakdale, Conn.); Shaq Goodwin (Southwest Dekalb H.S./Decatur, Ga.); Jerami Grant (DeMatha Catholic/Bowie, Md.); Montrezl Harrell (Hargrave Military Academy/Tarboro, N.C.); Joel James (Dwyer H.S./West Palm Beach, Fla.); Jake Layman (King Phillip Regional H.S./Wrentham, Mass.); Devonta Pollard (Kemper County/Porterville, Miss.); Rodney Purvis (Upper Room Christian/Raleigh, N.C.); Marcus Smart (Marcus H.S./Flower Mound, Texas); Robert Upshaw (Edison H.S./Fresno, Calif.); and Adam Woodbury (East H.S./Sioux City, Iowa).
Participants set to graduate in 2013 include: Jabari Bird (Salesian H.S./Vallejo, Calif.); Nathaniel Britt, II (Gonzaga H.S., D.C./Upper Marlboro, Md.); Aaron Harrison (Travis H.S./Richmond, Texas); Andrew Harrison (Travis H.S./Richmond, Texas); Julius Randle (Prestonwood Christian Academy/ McKinney, Texas); and Troy Williams (Phoebus H.S./Hampton, Va.).
The 2012 USA U18 National Team will be led by a trio of experienced and successful college coaches at the FIBA Americas U18 Championship, including Billy Donovan (University of Florida) as head coach, with Mark Few (Gonzaga University) and Shaka Smart (Virginia Commonwealth University) as assistant coaches.
“It will be important to learn to play together as a team in a short amount of time,” Donovan said. “We need to demonstrate great focus and teamwork and bring a high level of energy and effort every day in order to have success both in training camp and throughout the competition.”
Following the first three or four days of training camp from June 5-12 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center (USOTC) in Colorado Springs, Colo., finalist for the team will be selected by the USA Men’s Junior National Team Committee and will continue to train at the USOTC.
“We have a very talented group of young players that will have a great chance of bringing home a gold medal in the FIBA Americas U18 Championship,” said Jim Boeheim, Syracuse University and Hall of Fame coach and chair of the USA Junior National Team Committee. “As is the case each year, our USA Team will be up against the best players in their age group in the world. They will face great competition from the other participating countries.”
The official, 12-member 2012 USA Men’s U18 National Team will be selected prior to the team’s departure for the 2012 FIBA Americas U18 Championship, which will be played June 16-20 in Sao Sebastiáo do Paraiso, Brazil. Players eligible for this competition must have been born on or after Jan. 1, 1994.
The players represent 15 states, including five from Texas; three from Maryland; two from California, Georgia and North Carolina; along with one player each from Connecticut, Florida, Iowa, Indiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia and Wisconsin.
In addition to rising college sophomore Stokes, who listed on the 2011-12 Southeastern Conference All-Freshman team, the training camp roster includes 17 high school seniors set to graduate in 2012 and six prep athletes from the Class of 2013.
One set of twins, Aaron and Andrew Harrison, play together at Travis High School (Texas), while Grant and Robinson both attend DeMatha Catholic High School (Maryland).
Smart (Texas) took home his second-consecutive Gatorade State Player of the Year honor in 2012; while Dekker (Wis.), Dunn (Conn.), Harris (Ind.) and Purvis (N.C.) were named their state’s 2012 Gatorade State Player of the Year; and Britt (D.C.) earned the honor in 2011.
Playing in the McDonald’s All-America Game was 3-point shootout champion Sulaimon, along with Dunn, Harris, Pollard, Purvis and Smart. The Jordan Brand Classic featured Dunn, Grant, Harris, Purvis and Sulaimon.
Eight teams will compete in the 2012 U18 zone qualifier, including the USA, Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Columbia, Mexico, Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands. The top four finishing teams in the tournament will qualify for next summer’s 2013 FIBA U19 World Championship.
In addition to chair Boeheim, the USA Basketball Men’s Junior National Team Committee includes NCAA appointees Lorenzo Romar (University of Washington), Bruce Weber (Kansas State University) and Roy Williams (University of North Carolina), as well as athlete representative Jay Williams (2002 USA World Championship Team).
About USA Basketball
Based in Colorado Springs, Colo., USA Basketball is a nonprofit organization and the national governing body for men’s and women’s basketball in the United States. As the recognized governing body for basketball in the United States by the International Basketball Federation (FIBA) and the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), USA Basketball is responsible for the selection, training and fielding of USA teams that compete in FIBA sponsored international basketball competitions, as well as for some national competitions.
Since 2008, USA Basketball men’s and women’s teams have compiled a sterling 134-6 win-loss record in FIBA or FIBA Americas competitions. USA teams are the current men’s and women’s champions of the Olympics and FIBA World Championship; FIBA women’s U19 world champions; the men’s and women’s title holders for the FIBA U17 World Championship; and the men’s and women’s U18 and U16 FIBA Americas champions. USA Basketball currently ranks No. 1 in all five of FIBA’s world ranking categories, including combined, men’s, women’s, boys and girls.