Sunday, September 14, 2008


September 14, 2008

VERBAL COMMITMENT ALERT: Kadeem Batts, 6'8 PF from McEachern HS in Georgia

The visits continued at Providence as over the weekend PC Was Hosting Two Recruits (Providence Journal), including already committed Antoine Allen and Georgia big man Kadeem Batts. As the weekend ends, both players are now committed to the PC as the Friars Nab Third Recruit (Providence Journal).

Projected 2009-2010 Roster

Seniors: Sharaud Curry (PG), Brian McKenzie (SG), Ray Hall (C)
Juniors: Jamine Peterson (F), Marshon Brooks (G), Alex Kellogg (F)
Sophomres: Bilal Dixon (F)
Freshmen: Antoine Allen (G), Duke Mondy (G), Kadeem Batts (PF)

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Keno Davis takes over a situation at Providence that is both good and bad. The good part is he inherits a program with a very experienced line-up. The Friars will open the 2008-2009 season with seniors Weyinmi Efejuku, Geoff McDermott, Jonathan Kale and 5th year seniors Randall Hanke and Jeff Xavier. Also, juniors Ray Hall and Brian McKenzie return and point guard Sharaud Curry will be back in the line-up after missing last season with a foot injury. As for the bad news, coach Davis and his staff must make quick work on the recruiting front to replace the talent and depth of the roster that will not be here much past this season.

Over the past weekend, Providence took another step toward re-stocking the program by receiving a verbal commitment Kadeem Batts out of Powder Springs (GA) while he was on an official visit to the school. In the July evaluation period, Batts turned heads playing for the Smyrna Stars and had several high-major schools checking him out. The NBE Basketball Report was impressed with Batts' play this summer on Wednesday at the Reebok All-American Camp where he showed the tools necessary to compete in the Big East. Batts is athletic and with a strong body can mix it up inside on the boards and defensively he can block and alter shots. He also showed his offensive game is coming around as well, too.

The commitment from Batts come just one week after another commitment from a campus visit came from Michigan native Duke Mondy. Mondy is a 6-foot-3 guard out of Catholic Central High School in Grand Rapids (MI). As a junior, Mondy averaged about 15 points, 7 rebounds and 6 assists for coach TJ Carnegie at Catholic Central and his Coach Had Nothing but Praise for Mondy on and off the court.

Mondy had already been familiar with coach Davis prior to him taking the PC head coaching job last April as Davis was recruiting Mondy to Drake, where he was previously the head coach. Mondy decided on Providence over Western Michigan and also had offers from Ohio, Toledo, Central Michigan and others.

Previously, the Friars got a verbal commitment from 6-foot-2 guard Antoine Allen. Allen was also visiting PC this past weekend along with Batts. The Baltimore native cited schools such as Rutgers, Maryland, Rhode Island, Auburn, Towson and others as schools interested in him during July. Playing for the Cecil Kirk AAU program, Allen caught the eye of the NBE Basketball Report at events such as the Pittsburgh Jam Fest and the Nike Main Event in Vegas. Each time, Allen showed a high-level athletic ability with speed and strength to get to the basket and rack up points. At times, he also showed the ability to knock down the deep ball and is a very confident offensive player.

The NBE Basketball Report previously caught up with Anthony Lewis, head man of the Cecil Kirk AAU program, for a Closer Look at Antoine Allen.

The Keno Davis system, which causes NCAA Basketball Odds of winning to increase by spreading the floor, was on display at Drake last season and showed how effective it could be. Getting up and down the floor and attacking the basket is what Allen does well. At this point, he is definitely in the classification of a scoring guard, but he also shows the ability to drive and dish. Mondy, according to his high school coach, is an excellent passer who can do many things well as PC spreads the floor and can score from the perimeter at every position. They are both quality additions to the Friar program that will have a very useful skill set for PC and their new direction. Batts adds an interior body that is also athletic and can play in the system and hit the boards.

Keno Davis seemed to get off to a slow start on the recruiting trail, but of late, more and more players are listing the Friars on their recruiting lists. Some of the top targets emerging for the Friars include Samford (CT) forward Tevin Baskin, DC-area big man Talib Zanna, Torrington (CT) BF/C Jordan Williams, James Padgett of NYC, Delaware prospects Isaiah Philmore, a 6-foot-7 forward, and Erique Gumbs, a 6-foot-8 big man, fast rising Maryland guard Devon Saddler and fellow Michigan prospects James Still, a 6-foot-8 big man from Detroit who visited with Mondy earlier this fall, and 6-foot-7 forward Ben Simons. Maine big man Thomas Knight is also receiving heavy interest from PC. With three recruits committed, PC can now fill in the openings and maybe go aggressively after a couple of these higher rated talents.

The Friars are also keeping a watchful eye on the class of 2010 as interest has been evident in players such as NYC's David Coley, BF Carson Desrosiers of Lawrence (MA), Nate Lubick, another NEPSAC product as well as Evan Smotrycz of the New Hampton School and NJ products such as guard Isaiah Epps and small forward Shaquille Thomas.

With many positions open to fill, we expect the PC recruiting news to be plentiful this fall as Keno Davis looks to make his mark on the Providence program and Big East recruiting battles. We will follow these stories closely as they begin to develop.



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