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May 31, 2012

Philadelphia All-City Classic Recap

Philadelphia, PA - On Wednesday night, Minnesota Timberwolves player Wayne Ellington hosted the All-City Classic featuring the top players in the state of Pennsylvania and a few from New Jersey who played with Pennsylvania AAU teams. Past players include Dion Waiters , Amile Jefferson and Maalik Wayns and this year's field included an array of talented juniors, sophomores and freshmen in three very competitive games. The Recruit Scoop on Rivals took in the action from Wednesday. Here is a rundown of some of the top performers and their recruitment.

Shep Garner , 2014 Guard from Roman Catholic - The uber talented guard has always established himself as one of the top players in the tri-state, but ever since his coaches moved him to point guard Garner may have found his true position. Realistically, the 6-foot-2 rising junior is a combo guard but the Roman Catholic stud can really play the point well. He distributes on the move and has a nifty flow to his game that is fancy when he handles the ball, but very controlled and unique. He sees the floor extremely well, finds open teammates and has such strong handle. While he is not a pick and roll guard just yet, Garner makes it look easy in a run and gun offense at the point and can also score. That being said, he needs to consistently finish at the rim. Penn State, Rutgers, Florida, Maryland, Texas, Arizona, Temple, La Salle and St. Joseph's have offered, while North Carolina, Kansas and Xavier are showing some interest.

Derrick Jones , 2015 SF from Archbishop Carroll - The bouncy freshman continued his great spring with a strong performance in the Classic. His athleticism is unbelievable and he plays similarly to current NBA draft prospect Michael Gilchrist but also moves similar to current North Carolina center Desmond Hubert . He runs up the court fairly slow and his motor isn't always present until he gets near the rim but Jones goes after every rebound and blocks shots with an attitude and tenacity rare for his 6-foot-5 frame. Between his defensive ability and his ability to finish, Derrick Jones will be a special prospect if he can improve his handle in order to slash from the wing. St. Joseph's, Xavier, Penn, Rutgers and Villanova have already expressed interest in Jones, who is playing with We R1's U16 team this summer. As the buzz continues to grow, look for the rising sophomore to appear on everyone's radar very soon.

Antonio Toplyn , 2014 SF from Neumann Goretti - The quiet and unassuming 6-foot-5 small forward came to play and surprised everyone with his performance. Demonstrating amazing athletic ability, slashing skills and an ability to finish, Toplyn is a dangerous small forward who could be very good depending on how much more he grows. With a good sense of seeing the open floor and being able to handle the rock, the rising junior needs to play with a sense of urgency like this all the time in order to be recognized. With no current offers on the table, the talented slasher has interest from Illinois, Bucknell, Delaware, Radford, Boston, Akron, VCU and St. Peter's. Look for him to have a strong summer with Team Final's U16 team.

Johnnie Davis , 2013 SF from Neumann Goretti - Usually known for his gritty team play on the court as a role player, Davis was one of the stars of the junior game as he constantly scored. Showing off his jumper a bit, but primarily being active down low for layups and attacking the rim, the rising senior was very impressive and scored in a variety of ways. With a big body at 6-foot-4, the versatile rock who can play the 2, 3 and 4 on the court is a mid-major coach's dream. Speaking of mid-major, the entire MAAC - including St. Peter's, Rider and Niagara are after Davis - to go along with Boston, Binghamton, UMBC, Towson, VCU, George Mason, Drexel, UMass, Florida Atlantic, La Salle and Missouri State have offered. He plans on visiting Boston, VCU, Towson and UMass before the summer ends.

Rysheed Jordan , 2013 PG from Robert Vaux - The No. 12 junior in the Rivals150 was in beast mode at the All-City Classic. A big, physical 6-foot-4 guard who passes the ball well and scores by going to the hole and using his rapidly improving mid-range jump shot, Jordan showed off all sides to his game. With a focused attitude on the court and the playmaking ability of a McDonald's All American candidate, Jordan is being tracked by Maryland the hardest as of now and has visited the College Park campus twice. Alabama, Villanova, Temple, La Salle, Kansas, St. John's, Virginia, Arizona, Georgetown, NC State, Drexel and more are heavily involved for Jordan, who could make a college decision as early as July. If he holds out to the fall, look for the Terrapins to definitely receive an official visit from him.

Ahmad Gilbert , 2015 SF from Constitution - Similar to Jones, the rising sophomore has an immense amount of athleticism. He runs the floor very well at 6-foot-4 and has a niche on the wing where he likes to attack the rim. He scores, but also sees his teammates and is very versatile. While his jumper is not consistent yet and his handle still needs some improvement, Gilbert plays a similar game to Pennsylvania native and Fairfield incoming freshman Marcus Gilbert . With a high-major motor and a knack for scoring the ball at the cup, the 2015 product is already hearing from Villanova and Temple, early on. With Savon Goodman and Daiquan Walker graduating from Constitution this year, the weight of the team heads to Gilbert's shoulders where coach Rob Moore is ready to give him the green light.

Other top performers from the 2012 All-City Classic: 2013 - Rondae Jefferson , Penn State commit Brandon Austin , Amar Stukes . 2014 - Floyd Preito , Malik Starkes , Ja'Quan Newton , Jamal Custis . 2015 - Tim Delaney , Manny Taylor , Samir Doughty .


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