High school basketball fans, mark your calendars. I haven’t looked at any schedules for this season yet, but Dec. 22 will have to rank as one of the top matchups you’ll see before the postseason. Moreau Catholic is hosting the first Catholic School Winter Classic at Cal State East Bay. I’ll provide the full lineup — and there are several good games — but the nightcap is a doozy. Salesian vs. Archbishop Mitty. Yep, two defending state champions. Two favorites to represent NorCal in this year’s new Open Division state championship game. Oh and possibly the two best players in all of California in Salesian’s Jabari Bird and Mitty’s Aaron Gordon. Here’s the full lineup.
Noon: Central Catholic-Modesto vs. St. Elizabeth
1:30 p.m.: Moreau Catholic vs. Archbishop Riordan-San Francisco
3 p.m.: St. Mary’s-Stockton vs. St. Francis-Mountain View
4:30 p.m.: St. Patrick-St. Vincent vs. Sacred Heart Prep-Atherton
6 p.m.: St. Joseph Notre Dame vs. Serra-San Mateo
7:30 p.m.: Salesian vs. Archbishop Mitty-San Jose
Admission is $10, $7 for kids ages 6-17. 5 and under are free.
Three former Las Positas College men’s basketball players, led by Logan High graduate Jarred Jourdan, have signed with four-year schools for the 2012-13 season.
Jourdan signed with Division I Liberty University (Va.) and has three seasons of eligibility remaining. Dwight Abad (Logan) signed with Bethany College (Kan.), and Ryan Hebebrand (Granada) signed with Cal State East Bay. Abad and Hebebrand have two more seasons of eligibility.
Hebebrand and Abad last played for Las Positas in the 2010-11 season.
Jourdan, a 6-foot-5 forward , averaged 16 points and 6.3 rebounds last season. He also shot 49 percent from the floor, and over his last three games, which included two in the postseason, Jourdan averaged 28.3 points. He was named to the first-team All-Coast Conference North Division squad.
Jasmine Jenkins, a 6-foot-2 forward from Dougherty Valley High, has given an oral commitment to University of the Pacific.
Jenkins, daughter of former Oakland Raider Robert Jenkins, is a three-year all-Diablo Foothill Athletic League player and a major factor in Dougherty Valley’s two DFAL titles and a North Coast Section Division II championship.
The past three years she has averaged over 12 points per game. Jenkins received multiple offers, including from Navy, Nevada, Loyola Marymount, and UC Santa Barbara.
Salesian High’s Jabari Bird and Archbishop Mitty’s Aaron Gordon were among the final 12 players selected to compete in the Under Armour Elite 24 competition Aug. 24-25 at the Venice Beach Courts in Los Angeles. The two-day event features a slam dunk contest, which will air at 4 p.m. PST on Aug. 24 on ESPNU. The game is Aug. 25 at 4 p.m. and also airs on ESPNU. ESPN ranks Bird the No. 20 overall player in the 2013 class and his five official finalists are Cal, Washington, Arizona, Oregon and Colorado, although it’s basically down to Cal and Washington. Gordon is ranked the No. 6 player in the country by ESPN. Both players led their teams to California Interscholastic Federation state titles, with Gordon taking Mitty to the Division II crown and Bird leading Salesian to the Division IV crown.
Castro Valley High has hired former Fresno State assistant Senque Carey as its new boys basketball coach.
Carey replaces Nick Jones, who left to take the job at Monte Vista.
“He brings a lot of experience to our school,” Castro Valley athletic director Andy Popper said of Carey. “We’re excited to have somebody who’s passionate about basketball and wants to win. He wants to work with the community and work with the kids and grades are important to him.”
The Bay team may have had more college bound-talent and state championship game experience, but it was the Sacramento team’s day at the high school girls basketball senior all-star game Friday at the Norcal Courts in Martinez.
In particular, it was Brianna Burgos’ day.
The Sheldon High senior headed to Sonoma State scored 31 points to lead Sacramento back from an early deficit and to a 73-65 victory.
Sacramento outscored the Bay team 19-7 in the fourth quarter to earn the win.
Richmond High guard Isaiah Brown has signed a letter of intent to play basketball for Sonoma State next season.
“I met some good people,” Brown said. “They were all really welcoming. They made me want to come back.”
Brown averaged 27.2 points per game as a senior for the Oilers, earning Alameda Contra Costa Athletic League MVP honors. That he was named MVP was especially telling, considering Richmond went just 1-26 on the season.
“It was a real tough season,” Brown said. “No matter what we did right, we just couldn’t get those wins.”
A two-sport star at Richmond who also impressed as a do-everything player on the football field, Brown said he did give some thought to playing on the gridiron at the next level. But, he said that basketball has always been his No. 1 priority and once the offer came from Sonoma State, he was ready to take it.
Salesian High boys basketball star Jabari Bird will compete in June to earn a spot on the USA Basketball Men’s U18 National Team.
The 6-foot-6 junior guard is one of 24 players to accept an invitation to compete for one of the team’s 12 rosters spots. He’ll travel to Colorado Springs, Colo., to train with the team June 5-12 at the U.S. Olympic Training Center.
The team that is selected will compete June 16-20 in the FIBA Americas U18 Championship in Sao Sebastiáo do Paraiso, Brazil.
“I’ve always grown up watching the USA team and always wanted to be a part of it,” Bird said. “It’s a real big moment in my life and my career.” Read the rest of this entry »