Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Notes from my notepad: Dec. 3

Notes from my notepad: Dec. 3

Have you ever been so swamped with work that you look at your calendar and wonder where the heck the last month went?

Yeah, that's me. That is my life at the moment.

The season has officially started and we are two weeks into games. I've been out and about for over a dozen games so far and have seen some good players but not too many great games. I'm still very much waiting for a wow moment this season.

Here are a couple of observations on what I've seen so far:

- Miller Grove is the best team I've seen so far. They are too big, too deep and too good in the press. Mfon Udofia is the best leader in the state and this team will be scary in tournament play.

Speaking of Miller Grove, the GHSA's suspension of Sharman White is idiotic. He is shelved because of something that happened five years ago. There are plenty of other items of business that others have been able to "get by" with. This state has plenty of ridiculous transfers that go unnoticed. Shame on whoever is to blame for this one.

- Liberty County is the best team in the state that no one, and I mean no one, is talking about. They are a legitimate contender in AAA.

- Well…until they run into South Atlanta, of course. The Hornets look great with Andre Malone, a North Clayton transfer, now in the lineup. I saw Malone have one of his worst games against South Atlanta last year. This year, I saw him have one of his very best games of his career against Centennial.

Derrick Favors is pretty good, in case you didn't know that already. Do yourself a favor and go and watch him in high school this season.

Favors and Malone aren't doing it alone. Nick Jacobs could very well be the best big man in 2011 in Georgia. He has gotten so much better in a year's time and working against Favors everyday in practice doesn't hurt.

- I excepted to see more out of Westlake. They have tons of talent, just not a group that seems to be on the same page. Less turnovers, more production in the post and better perimeter scoring are the three areas for improvement.

- Keep an eye out for Hillgrove, a good-looking team in region 7-AAAA. They could be a No. 1 seed in the state tournament. The guards are good and Heath Houston is a fine sleeper in Cobb County.

- One of the big wins for Hillgrove was an overtime thriller against North Cobb, another state tournament favorite. With Sprayberry transfer Colin Slotter now playing for coach Terry Gorsuch, this team will be a contender. Slotter was outstanding against Central Gwinnett at the South Forsyth tournament.

- Tickets are going fast for the Trent Wiedeman bandwagon. The GAC junior will have a huge season for his new coach, Eddie Martin. Martin is the resident big man guru in Georgia. Wiedeman has been good so far in the young season.

- Rockdale County sophomore Kevin Ware is the second coming of Senario Hillman.

Five things I'm buying this week

1. Westlake's Javaris Bryant to Bethune-Cookman. Can you say steal?

2. The Elite 8 Thanksgiving Hardwood Classic. Great one-day event downtown at Georgia State. If a big time player wasn't playing, he was in the building watching it. That's great news for Rod Barnes and his great staff at GSU.

3. Parkview and South Forsyth both have great pre-Thanksgiving events. They are staples on my calendar and I'll go back every year as long as they host the events.

4. $1.52 per gallon gas I bought at the new Kroger on Hwy. 140 in Cherokee County. That comes in big this time of year.

5. Wes Durham as a play-by-play announcer. I listened to him call the Jacksonville-Georgia Tech game last Thursday on my way home from the Rockdale County win over Stephenson. Durham is one of the best in the business at what he does.

Teams I've seen so far this season: (27) Centennial, Central Gwinnett, Chamblee, Creekside, Cross Creek, Dunwoody, East Coweta, Elbert County, GAC, Hillgrove, Lithia Springs, Loganville, Marist, Meadowcreek, Miller Grove (twice), North Cobb, Northview, Riverwood, Rockdale County, Sandy Creek, South Atlanta, Southwest Atlanta Christian, Stephenson, Tucker, Wesleyan, Westlake, Westminster

Week 1 Superlatives

Top player of the week: Colin Slotter, SF, North Cobb (MURRAY STATE)
Top senior of the week: Colin Slotter, SF, North Cobb (MURRAY STATE)
Top unsigned senior of the week: Jarvis Brown, SF/SG, Meadowcreek
Top junior of the week: Rod Rucker, SF, Elbert County
Top junior sleeper of the week: Santoine Butler, PF, Cross Creek
Top sophomore of the week: None
Top freshman of the week: Kyle Meyer, C, Northview

(Players are chosen from the games that I personally watched that week.)

Week 2 Superlatives

Top player of the week: Derrick Favors, PF, South Atlanta
Top senior of the week: Derrick Favors, PF, South Atlanta
Top unsigned senior of the week: Justin Taylor, PF, East Coweta
Top junior of the week: Trent Wiedeman, PF, GAC
Top junior sleeper of the week: Michael Murray, SG, Southwest Atlanta Christian
Top sophomore of the week: Nick Jacobs, PF, South Atlanta
Top freshman of the week: Tony Parker, C, Miller Grove

(Players are chosen from the games that I personally watched that week.)