CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. - Duke and North Carolina target Harrison Barnes had a chance to win a game in overtime for his team during Friday morning’s session at the NBA Players Association top 100 camp at the University of Virginia.
Barnes, who’s considered the top player in the Class of 2010 by scout.com dribbled to the left elbow and saw his 16-foot jump shot rattle off the front rim. After a jump ball, the opposing team took control and got the ball to North Carolina point guard commitment Kendall Marshall.
His team blew an 18-point lead in regulation and went to overtime after an injury to highly regarded Class of 2011 talent Michael Gilchrist of Elizabeth, N.J.
Marshall drove the lane against highly regarded Findlay Prep point guard Cory Joseph and found a teammate, James Johnson, wide open for a winning layup.
“We’re undefeated so far,” Marshall said, smiling.
Marshall said he still would like to get more athletic before he enrolls at North Carolina next season, but his vision and ability to change speeds make him a constant threat in the half-court offense.
Here are more observations from the morning games at the NBPA camp:
- Raleigh Word of God Academy’s C.J. Leslie said he wants to be more of a leader this year in his second appearance at the NBPA camp.
He was following through on that goal Friday morning, hollering out defensive instructions to teammates louder than anybody else on the floor and continuing even when he was on the bench.
“Pick left,” he screamed moments before a steal, followed by a “there we go.”
By the third day of camp, Leslie’s team had adjusted to his unusual ability to control the ball and run the fast break as a 6-foot-9 power forward. If he continues to excel in this manner, he could take a run at the top 10 in his class when the post-summer rankings come out.
- Three Class of 2010 point guards – in addition to current commitment Tyler Thornton – are believed to be on Duke’s radar.
Brandon Knight of Fort Lauderdale clearly has established himself as the best and most athletic player at the position in the class. Kyrie Irving of Elizabeth, N.J., got off to a slow start at the NBPA after a strong showing in the Bob Gibbons Tournament of Champions on Memorial Day weekend.
Detroit’s Ray McCallum isn’t as highly rated as Irving, but could be climbing after this week. He has a commanding presence with the ball and knows how to penetrate and finish in the lane.
Thornton, meanwhile, is an unselfish player with unusually good defensive positioning. But he’s not even the best guard on his team in camp. That’s Keith Appling, who’s headed to Michigan State.
- Through three sessions, Wake Forest shooting guard commitment J.T. Terrell of Burlington had the highest-scoring game with a 26-point effort on Thursday night.
Terrell should be a prominent part of the Deacons’ backcourt beginning in 2010. Wake Forest just lost Jeff Teague as an early entry in the NBA draft and has Ish Smith and L.D. Williams departing after 2009-10.
“(Coach Dino Gaudio) really wants me to work hard on my defense,” Terrell said. “I made a promise to him that this summer and next school year I would work on my defense.”
- Ken Tysiac