Recapping the Dallas ISD Post Season Classic.
by Rodger Bohn / @rodgerbohn
Ellis Davis Fieldhouse in Dallas played prove to an all-day showdown of the top schools in the Dallas ISD against many of the area’s other powers playing outside of the city league. In somewhat of a “Heights vs Hood” type setting, everyone was out to rep the city schools against their suburban counterparts.
The games were fierce and ran from the crack of dawn until 10 p.m., making for quite the day of hoops. There were no less than 25 DI players throughout the day in the 10,000 plus seat arena, making a hotspot for college coaches to stop in before or after their Saturday conference games.
The premier game of the evening pegged Dallas Lincoln (city school that was the home of Chris Bosh, among others) versus private school power Grace Prep out of Arlington (who rocks two future Burger Boys: 7-0 Isaiah Austin and 6-2 Jamal Branch). Lincoln got the SCORE W and bragging rights in what has been a war of words between the two squads for the entire team.
Here’s a look at some of the top PUNKS who did their thing in Dallas:
LeBryan Nash | 6-7 | SF/PF | Lincoln | 2011
“LB” came into the game ready to prove himself against 7-0 Isaiah Austin, and prove himself he did with the W and the game’s leading scorer award. Nash showed a better handle from when we last caught him in the summer and was able to smoke cats off of the bounce with his explosive first step. Nash used his jacked frame to post anyone his size or smaller on the blocks, finishing above the rim the vast majority of the time. Simply put, he just has that “dog” in him. Speaking of his hops, the junior almost shut the house down with a windmill that he had on a fast break. Nash is definitely a top 10 2011 guy, with the potential to get even higher if he continues to improve upon his jumper.
Isaiah Austin | 7-0 | PF/C | Arlington Grace Prep | 2012
It was a rough game for the highly touted 7-footer, facing a number of double teams and the more physical post players. It ultimately wound up being the tale of two halves for Austin, looking like the top player in the Class of 2012 with his first half performance before struggling in the second stanza. Isaiah showed his impressive skill set, handling the ball in the open court a few times and converting on a number of face-up J’s. He held his own on the defensive end and was able to change the game with his length and timing. Austin def needs to get stronger and needs to improve his back to the basket game, but he’s a top-3 lock in the Class of 2012 with his deadly combo of size and skills.
Tony Mitchell | 6-8 | SF/PF | Pinkston | 2010
Mitchell had the best game here of anyone who we caught in our two weeks of scouting down here in Dallas, finishing with a ridic stat line against Waco Heights. He played both forward spots, allowing him to put his full package on display for the crowd. The Missouri recruit got buckets inside and out, breaking slower defenders down off of the bounce while also taking smaller guys down to the blocks. For being more of a wing player, Mitchell showed great fundamentals in the pivot keeping the ball high and reading the double team well when he got the pill. Of course his freakish athleticism allowed him to have a couple of nasty bangs along with changing the game on the defensive end with his blocked shots. Mitchell is still a little rough around the edges though and needs to continue working on his J to make the transition to full time small forward. Arguably the biggest snub for both the McDonald’s All-America Game and the Jordan Game, Tony clearly came out with a chip on his shoulder and was looking to prove a point. We got the point Tony, loud and clear.
Jamal Branch | 6-2 | PG | Arlington Grace Prep | 2011
Branch showed the package of pure point guard skills that have made him one of the best in the country, despite the fact that the tempo of the game was completely killed by the zone defense that ran. In terms of court vision, a case could be made for the Texas A&M commit for the best in the land, as seen by his countless left hand (off hand) passes he made at the drop of a dime. Passes a lot of NBA playmakers can ‘t make, no joke. Branch also converted on a number of acrobatic finishes in the lane with both hands and kept defenders honest by drilling a pair of threes. Marquis Teague takes the crown for top PG in the class at the moment, but Jamal Branch is definitely up there amongst the elite.
Keaton Miles | 6-6 | SF/PF | Lincoln | 2011
One of SLAM’s Fresh 25 in 2011, Miles did a great job of D’g up the 7’0 Austin, despite giving up 6 inches and his slender frame. Even though he tips the scales at 180 pounds soaking wet, his lack of girth won’t deter him from mixing it up with the big guys in the paint. Miles put his J on full display, both from three and as a turnaround J out of the post. Definitely a guy who needs to get stronger, but will land at a high major program either way.
Jarion Henry | 6-7 | SG/SF | Kimball | 2011
The son of former NBA player Herman Henry got it done everywhere on the court, playing all five positions at different spurts throughout the game. The lefty showed slick court vision and like Mitchell, was able to get buckets both inside and out. The lanky guard handled the ball very well in the open floor and was incredibly productive in just about every facet of the game, using his length to put mad pressure on the ball on D. Jarion still needs to work on the form and consistency of his jumper, but the versatility and potential he’s shown is enough to get the attention of Baylor, Marquette, Oklahoma and USC.
Devonta Abron | 6-8 | PF | Segoaville | 2011
Abron, who is leading the Dallas area in scoring, had another monster game with 32 points. He’s your typical stretch PF, able to shoot it from beyond the arc but also get buckets inside. The lefty has an advanced skill set you don’t see out of too many cats his age, however can also be a monster on the glass.. Definitely a guy to look out for in the next 2011 rankings nationally.
Dekabrian Eldridge | 6-2 | SG | Lincoln | 2011
Eldridge was one of the better unsigned seniors we saw in the Metroplex, proving to be a straight scorer who can fill it up in a number of ways. He can drill the open three, hit you with a two dribble pull-up, and finish creatively around the rim with either hand . While the talent is definitely there for him to be a solid DI player, it’s looking like the books are going to force him to opt for the junior college route next season.
DonWayne Mayberry | 5-7 | PG | Woodrow Wilson | 2011
Mayberry was one of the smallest cats we caught in Dallas, but also one of the more unstoppable scorers. He’s fearless going to the rack, can bomb from deep beyond the arc, and is a blur in transition. DonWayne’s style of play is reminiscent to that of current South Carolina star Devan Downey, although DonWayne is not on the same level as South Carolina’s all time leading HS scorer. Look for Mayberry to be headed to a prep school or JuCo near you next year, in order to clear about a few academic issues before making his home at a four year college.