Let's get creepy.
--Peyton Siva scored a game-high 33 points as Seattle Franklin rolled over Bishop Blanchet 76-61 in its season opener. The 6-1 point guard added seven rebounds, five steals and five assists for the Quakers, who are the top ranked team in Washington's Class 3A and ranked 21st nationally by USA Today.
--Rakeem Buckles is off to a sensational start for Miami powerhouse Monsignor Pace, following a 37-point, 19 rebound performance on Dec. 1 with a 30-point, 16-rebound, six steal showing three days later. Pace is unbeaten and ranked as the No. 1 team in Florida's Class 4A.
--Indianapolis Lawrence North, the runaway favorite to take state in Indiana's Class 4A, was stunned last week by Terre Haute South, 50-44. Kentucky commit Dominique Ferguson led the Wildcats with 15 points, while future U of L big men Stephen Van Treese and Justin Martin added nine and eight points, respectively.
--Jeremy Tyler has been on the receiving end of some serious preseason accolades recently, first being named the preseason Player of the Year in California's Eastern League, and then being the focus of a Slam Online feature piece.
"You can watch (Hoop Dreams) and learn from their actions and learn from their mistakes," Tyler said. "What we’re doing with this [documentary] is basically the same thing. If I make it, people can learn from it, like, ‘this is what you need to do.’ If I don’t make it, they can learn from the things I did along the way."
The maturity in that statement speaks volumes. Greg Oden looks old beyond his years; Jeremy Tyler just speaks beyond them. He’s got a game against Renardo Sidney and Fairfax HS (scheduled Jan. 23 on ESPN), a movie being filmed about him, boxes upon boxes of full offers, yet he still manages to keep grounded. Adopting a phrase from Hoop Dreams, "People are always telling me not to forget about them when I make it. And I always tell them not to forget about me if I don’t."
Be excited about this kid, be very excited.
--Mike Marra, the class of 2009 signee Rick Pitino described as the "best high school shooter" he had ever seen, began his senior season with a bang, connecting on 9-of-17 three-pointers and scoring 36 total points in a pair of season-opening wins for his Northfield (Mass.) Mount Hermon squad.
After taking in the performance, Rivals.com national analyst Jerry Meyer had the following to say:
"Look for Mike Marra to get minutes at Louisville as a long-range shooting specialist. He has a sweet stroke with range and gets it off quickly and with elevation. Marra isn't the quickest player or the best off the bounce, but he is certainly one of those players whose shot you expect to go in."
--Josh Langford hit double figures in each of Huntsville (Ala.) Johnson High's first four games, helping the Jaguars to a 2-2 start.