MANALANPAN, N.J. -- Elevate Hoops invades the Sportika complex this week, with two Summer Icebreaker tournaments taking place at the new seven-court facility in central Jersey.
Here’s a notebook from the second and final day of the Icebreaker I tournament:
Pennridge’s Yoder working on move to point
Sean Yoder is a high school point guard, but that doesn’t mean he can be penciled in as a Division I point guard.
Not yet, anyway. The way Yoder sees it, he is capable of playing the most-important position on the floor at the next level, but improvements have to be made. Before the crush of recruiting enters his life, whenever it finally does, the class of 2019 standout is continuing to work.
“I think at the next level, I can be a point guard, so I’m looking to improve my ball-handling,” Yoder said. “Changing speeds is another big one, so there is a lot of work still to do.”
Yoder’s maturation got sped up some as a sophomore by not only making the varsity at Pennridge as a sophomore, but starting and playing heavy minutes for a young team. That amount of experience has him ahead of the curve at the 16-and-under level, where not everyone has varsity experience.
With a year of high school basketball under his belt, this is an important time for Yoder. If Yoder can get the ball-handling and speed of the game in line with a still-improving jumper and already-strong court vision, that aforementioned recruiting-crush will come before long.
Yoder doesn’t have any offers yet, but he says Holy Cross, Lafayette and Colgate have all made early contact.
“The coaches at Pennridge and East Coast Power, they help me tremendously,” Yoder said. “Speed of the game is the biggest part, and they’ve all been helping me with it for the past year.
“Things are coming along well right now. I just want to get some college looks and turn some heads. I know I’m not the most athletic guy, not the biggest guy, so I’m just looking to play smart.”
Andrew Funk (above) says several mid-major programs are making him a real priority. (Photo: Josh Verlin/CoBL)
Funk happy with current offers as lead suitors emerge
Baker Dunleavy spent seven seasons as an assistant at Villanova, so when the 34-year-old took his first head-coaching position at Quinnipiac this spring, it stood to reason he would try to recruit Pennsylvania.
Enter Andrew Funk. A 2018 shooting guard playing for the Jersey Shore Warriors, Funk has Quinnipiac, among other schools, on his radar as the all-important recruiting month of July opens.
Here’s the wrinkle. Both of Funk’s parents went to Villanova, so the entire family is well-versed with what Dunleavy is capable of. Funk and his family recently took an unofficial visit to the Hamden, Conn. school, along with Bucknell and Yale.
“Coach Dunleavy is a great guy, and coming from Villanova, he’s trying to have the same type of success, just at a smaller school,” said Funk, who will be a senior at Archbishop Wood in the fall. “Him coming in there means a lot. He’s a great guy and a great coach.”
Funk was the sixth man on an Archbishop Wood squad that captured Catholic League and PIAA 5A championships last year; this year, he’ll move into a starting role for a Vikings squad that’s the favorite to repeat in both.
The 6-3 guard, who played up with the Warriors’ 17-and-under squad last summer, lists Drexel, Penn and Delaware as other schools showing the most interest, but is in no rush to make a move.
“I think I have a great list of schools right now,” Funk said. “If I don’t play better, then no more offers come in. I think I’m fine with the offers I have. If more offers come in, that’s great, but I’m just going to reassess once July is over.”
Bishop’s stock hitting high-major as summer arrives
Dahmir Bishop already had offers from Bowling Green and NJIT in his pocket. Then, things quickly changed.
Bishop, a 2019 shooting guard from Imhotep Charter playing with the K-Low Elite 16s -- but in the 17U bracket here -- picked up an offer from Penn State in late-June. Now, more high-major schools are taking notice.
Bishop has recently heard from SMU, Temple and UConn, with the adidas Summer Championships still ahead of him later this month in Las Vegas.
“I’m not really pick on schools, but I want to play at the highest level I possibly can,” Bishop said. “I want basketball to be my job for the rest of my life. I want this to be my career, so I need to play as well as I can.”
Bishop will bear attention not only this summer, but into his junior season at Imhotep, specifically because the defending Public League and PIAA Class 4A champs graduated two stars in David Beatty (South Carolina) and Daron Russell (Rhode Island).
The 6-4 guard is one of several Division I targets in his class for the Panthers, along with 6-7 wing Donta Scott, 6-6 wing forward Jamil Riggins and 6-4 wing guard Karam Cummings.
-- Josh Friday decided this summer to switch private schools for his final year of high school. The 2018 forward has moved from The Lawrenceville School (N.J.) to Friends Central (Pa.), and will suit up for the Phoenix this upcoming season. Friday was used at the ‘4’ and ‘5’ in his games on Thursday, but said he can also play the ‘3’ if needed. In terms of college interest, Friday says that Division III schools Oberlin (Ohio) and Claremont McKenna (Cali.) are the only schools that have reached out to him. Friday’s former teammate, 2019 guard Jalen Gaffney also transferred from Lawrenceville this summer and like Friday, he is also going to play in the Friends League -- for rival Westtown School, which has won the last four FSL championships. “I’ve been talking a ton of trash and texting him about it,” Friday said. “They’re a huge team and if we can get a win, that would be monumental thing for the team.”
-- Ocean Township and East Coast Cyclones 2018 forward Andrew Seager has had a slew of schools show interest in him. Seager says that thirty schools have shown interest in him. Twenty-five being Division III and five Division II schools. Among the 30 schools interested, Seager named Fairmont State, Georgian Court, University of the Sciences, Philadelphia University and Princeton University as those who have all contacted the 6-7 forward. Seager is enjoying his time with the East Coast Cyclones this summer, as this is his first season on the team. “The fit has been really good so far,” Seager said. “We’re well-coached and every practice, coach tries to get us better for the games.”