2016 AAU Opening Day in Iowa

Its April and that means its time to get on the road for the AAU Season.  I open my season with a day trip to Ames, IA.  Its the Super 16 hosted by All Iowa Attack.  Its my 1st trip to the All Iowa Attack Fieldhouse and what an amazing building it is.  4 courts in an entirely retro feel.

I had a chance to take in all 3 of the games for the Howard Pulley 17s and more than a game's worth of their 16s.  Both were playing in the top 17s bracket which is a 6 team round robin setup.  The 17s would go 3-0 and the 16s 1-2.  The Phenom 17s opened 0-2

Howard Pulley 17s
All Iowa Attack 17U Black 86-48 win
Omaha Elite 17U 67-54 win
All Iowa Attack 17U Red 78-42 win

Howard Pulley 16s
All Iowa Attack 17U Red 66-53 loss
MN Phenom 17s 78-48 win
Omaha Elite 17U 74-66 loss

MN Phenom 17s
Omaha Elite 61-36 loss
Howard Pulley 16s 78-48 loss

Don't have full information on the Phenom 17s roster but Irondale guard Sean Sutherlin is one of their top guys.

As to Howard Pulley, they were able to get everybody's feet wet with lots of playing time which means the event serves it purpose.   As expected they go 4 guard around either Theo John or Daniel Oturu.  Pulley's man to man defense was really aggressive getting after people.  Brad Davison knocked down shots and was very good all around all day.  Tre Jones was very good as well.  I really like DJ Hunter for this squad.  A guy who doesn't need shots and can defend multiple spots.  He played his role well as the 5th starter.  Isaac Johnson off the bench has the ability to be good in that role too.  Gary Trent did his usual scoring in limited minutes with the bench seeing extra minutes.  Gabe Kalscheur came off the bench and they ran lots of sets for him.  That results in 6 3s in the 1st game of the day.  Jeremiah Coddon played a lot of point guard off the bench.  But I'd rather see Brad Davison get those back up minutes to allow Coddon to create off the ball and give Davison more time on the ball where's he more comfortable.

The game vs Omaha Elite was a very good test for the Howard Pulley 17s.  Omaha Elite's starting backcourt has offers from Nebraska-Omaha and South Dakota.  Forward Logan Strom has football and basketball offers from South Dakota State.  Center Isaiah Chandler played here in the 2015 Timberwolves Shootout.  He has division 1 upside as well.  So despite losing a player or 2 to Adidas sponsored Chauncey Billups Elite, they're still very talented.  But despite a very quiet game from Gary Trent, Pulley would open a 38-19 halftime lead mainly due to their defense.  The 2nd half they would coast a bit.  Omaha Elite would try to make it interesting with Small and Chandler making plays in the 2nd half but they never got it to single digits.  Pulley would go on to win by 13.

The Pulley 16s have freshmen Courtney Brown (East Ridge) and David Roddy (Breck) starting for them.  This team struggled all day on the offensive end.   Its an athletic group with 3 or 4 good point guards.  However there's no real inside threat and not much shooting.  Matt Todd is in a spot similar to Brad Davison where he's a PG who has the ball all the time and creates for his team in HS but is now playing mostly off the ball (Ryan Larson playing PG).  So expect some time for him to adjust to that role.

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