Its time once again for the Pump N Run Spring Classic. Here's my look at the 2010 edition. I'll have live results on my Twitter page throughout the tournament. If you weren't following along last weekend, you missed game updates and plenty of feedback from the recruiting analysts in attendance.
17U (Schedule Here)
In Pool A, expect Pump N Run to roll. Comets North is the Comets squad in the pool. Top 2 Comets teams have the weekend off as last year prom decimated those squads. Jonah Travis got rave reviews from all the recruiting folks watching in Denver last week. Joel Lindberg just picked up a Toledo offer from former UWGB coach Tod Kowalczyk. Roosevelt Scott also jumping on the scene for PNR.
In Pool B, yuck. Team GetShook and the 3rd teams from the MN Heat and Wisconsin Blizzard. Richfield's lefty point guard Shawn Bear has been lighting it up for GetShook. Anoka's Eli Guptil on the wing is the other primary scorer. I'll take them by default to win the pool. (Czar's Note 4/22/10: Its actually Heat Sprang in the pool, not Heat Red. With Sprang and Jordan Van Eps, I'll take them to win the pool)
In Pool C, Bound 4 Glory makes the trip from Iowa but Heat Elite is the easy pick in this pool. Comets Gold is another secondary Comets squad in the bracket.
Pool D has very nice balance. This is the 2nd WI Playmakers squad so no Paul Jesperson or Phil Romback (politics potentially there as they will be at the Pulley Invite in 2 weeks). But 6'8 Kyle Stankowski was impressive a couple of weeks ago. Mahtomedi's Dane Schmid of Fury Gold is a good matchup for him. And we haven't mentioned the top Wear Out The Net squad yet with Lucas Brown, David Stanley, Vaughn Thada, Ben Sicoli and Matt Hentges. Fury vs WOTN at 6:40 Friday night likely decides the pool.
Pool E, not a fan. MN Wrath are here with MN Premiere. WI Swing is an unknown item. Good program, but 16s weren't special last year (unlike the 15s and 17s).
Pool F, WOTN 2nd team is here. Shane McSparron played well for them last weekend but this pool is all about the 3 headed monster of the Iowa Barnstormers. They rolled through the Badger City Classic 2 weeks ago and won their own tourney defeating the Milwaukee Spartans last weekend. Josh Oglesby is a 6'5" sharpshooting guard. He has offers from Creighton and Arizona State just to name 2. His Cedar Rapids rival 6'8" Jarrod Uthoff has been blowing up with offers from Indiana, Arizona State and Iowa State at the big level. Northern Colorado (coach now at Colorado), Northern Iowa, Indiana State and Creighton all on board as well. Wishoops named him the Badger City Classic MVP. Finally 6'8" Seth Tuttle who just got an offer from Colorado State. They have to be the major contender to the throne in the tournament. PNR knocked off the Barnstormers for the 16U title last year 62-54.
Pool G, this is the other very balanced pool. Triple Threat and James Fort are in. Fury Blue and Wisconsin Starz (former Madison Spartans group) round out the pool. Starz lost the title game at the Badger City Classic to the Barnstormers. A pair of Madison Memorial wings, Tre Burnette and Miles Chamberlain lead that squad. Starz vs Fury at 9 PM Friday night may decide the pool.
Finally in Pool H, this is MN Southside's pool to win as they play up a level. Joey King leads the way. De La Salle's Sam Burt is a good fit with him up front to hammer the glass. Eden Prairie's Sander Mohn is a shooter and Matt Larson is a bruising 6'1 forward. RK Elite comes up from southeast Wisconsin with Chris Souter at a guard and 6'7 big body Brian Quinn inside.
Pump N Run over Southside (tough round of 16 game for Southside)
Wear Out The Net Gold over MN Wrath
Wisconsin Starz over Heat Sprang (Czar's Note 4/22/10: updated to reflect change to pool B)
Barnstormers over Heat Elite (rough draw)
PNR over WOTN Gold
Barnstormers over Starz (again)
PNR over Barnstormers in a very good game like PNR vs Swing last year.
16U (Schedule Here)
WI Swing Litscher returns to defend their 15U title from last year. Assuming they kept Zak Showalter and David Neis, that's a quality guard duo to win pool A. I'll take the Wisconsin Playmakers in pool B. A retooled Pump N Run squad coming off a final 4 finish in Denver to roll in pool C. Sanjay Lumpkin impressed some of the onlookers there. Barnstormers 16s have been rolling too, they should win pool D. If the Wisconsin Starz roster that shows freshman stars Ian Taylor and Cody Riseeuw is correct I think they win pool E. But Heat Black may give them a run after their title at the Mpls Spring Jam last week. Totino-Grace's Sam Meyer playing well for that crew. Pool F has the Fury 16s in it against a 2nd or 3rd Swing team and Bound 4 Glory. Give me Fury. I'll take Heat Elite in pool G and 43 Hoops in Pool H. 43 Hoops with a rough championship loss last week in Menomonie. Expect coach Al Harris to have his guys ready for this week.
Swing-Litscher over 43 Hoops
Barnstormers over Starz
Heat Elite over WI Playmakers
PNR over Fury
Barnstormers over Swing (both tough wins to get here)
PNR over Heat Elite
PNR over Barnstormers (I can see any of Swing Litscher, Barnstormers or PNR winning it)
15U (Schedule Here)
The story here has to be the 2 Pump N Run teams. Especially the loaded Maroon team with Darrion Strong and Carson Shanks who both drew attention in Denver. Maroon wins pool A, Black wins Pool C but watchout for the Wisconsin Playmakers. The Onalaska duo of Clint Rihn and Matt Thomas are both players of note. Those teams play at 11:30 Saturday morning in one of the top 15U pool games. Barnstormers win pool E. Can't ignore Fury Blue in Pool F after they won the Comets tourney. Midtown Kings athletes in that pool can be disruptive. In Pool G, don't be surprised in the #4 Frosh in WI, Nick Fuller shows up with the WI Swing team. I'll take Swing in that pool. Comets Elite wins pool H.
Pump N Run Maroon stays undefeated and wins the tourney