Where to catch UNLV’s top 2013 recruiting targets during a hectic week in Las Vegas

Dave Rice and his staff have zeroed in on a handful of prospects to fill likely two more spots in their 2013 class.

Las Vegas has become the home of big-time summer hoops, anda busy few months culminates this week with a handful of major prep events being held in town.

Thousands of amateur’s will be in town to play in the adidas Super 64 (based at Rancho High), the Fab 48 (based at Bishop Gorman) and the Las Vegas Classic (based at Durango High).

As for the hometown school’s coaching staff, Dave Rice and his assistants don’t face nearly the same pressure heading towards the end of the July evaluation period that they did a year ago.

This time in 2011, not only were they needing to land at least five players in the upcoming senior class, but there was a wealth of talent in their own back yard at both Gorman and Findlay Prep that they were focused on keeping in the valley. In the end, UNLV ended up with what is regarded as one of the finest recruiting classes in the nation, highlighted by the likes of Katin Reinhardt, Anthony Bennett and Savon Goodman.

Now, Rice & Co. are likely looking to add two more players to their 2013 haul, which already includes committed Findlay Prep forward Chris Wood and 2011 signee Dantley Walker, who is completing a two-year LDS mission in Spokane, Wash., this year. UNLV graduates three seniors off of the 2012-13 squad, and is likely treating it as a senior year for star junior forward Mike Moser, who, barring injury, is likely to enter his name in the 2013 NBA draft.

The list of recruits isn’t terribly long, but here’s where you can catch UNLV’s top 2013 targets this week while they’re in town (NOTE: Scheduled pool play games are listed below, as tournament schedules for each of the events won’t be set until the end of pool play).

Chris Wood — 6-foot-10 wing — Findlay Prep/Henderson, Nev.

Summer team: Las Vegas Prospects

Tournament: Fab 48 (Tip-Off Challenge Wed.; 17U Invitational Pool Thurs./Fri.)

When you can see him: WEDNESDAY — 7:15 p.m. vs. Play Hard Play Smart Elite 17 (Gorman Court 2); THURSDAY — 9:15 a.m. vs. Wisconsin Playmakers (Gorman Court 3), 7:15 p.m. vs. Mater Dei Monarchs 17’s (Gorman Court 1); FRIDAY — 2:15 p.m. vs. DJH5 17 (Gorman Court 2).

In a nutshell: Wood came to Las Vegas last summer already a UNLV commit, yet beyond raw, having not played much during his first two high school seasons at two different schools in California, but oozing with potential. After spending a year in the shadows as a Findlay Prep reserve, he’s grown from 6-foot-8 to 6-foot-10 with a 7-foot-2 wingspan, and though he’s still lithe, has gotten noticeably stronger, tipping the scales right around 200 pounds. Also, a year of playing against elite competition both in games and — most notably — everyday in practice, he’s become a much more confident player. Expect to see him hoist a bevy of 3-pointers this weekend, as his smooth shot continues to become more and more of a weapon. This should be a fun team to watch, too, as the Prospects’ 17U roster is loaded with talent, including Gorman’s Rashad Muhammad and Clark’s Sir Washington — a pair of recruits UNLV is still in the evaluation stage with. The Wednesday night game against Play Hard Play Smart Elite 17 will pit Wood against 6-foot-5 wing Dakarai Allen — a Sacramento native who is still hanging around on UNLV’s radar.


Isaac Hamilton— 6-foot-4 combo guard — St. John Bosco/Los Angeles, Calif.

Summer team: Dream Vision Elite

Tournament: adidas Super 64 (17U Super Pools)

When you can see him: WEDNESDAY — 6:20 p.m. vs. New Heights (Rancho Main Gym); THURSDAY — 10:40a.m. vs. Garner Road Basketball Club (Rancho Main Gym), 5:20 p.m. vs. Mass Rivals 17s (Rancho Auxiliary Gym).

In a nutshell: Easily the most high-profile recruit on UNLV’s 2013 radar, the competition will be fierce, not just on the West Coast, but nationally. The younger brother of former Texas standout and current Denver Nugget Jordan Hamilton can fill it upin a variety of ways, and is ranked as the No. 12 overall recruit in the class by Rivals.com. UNLV would likely see him as a guy who could fit into the combo guard role right away next to Reinhardt after senior star Anthony Marshall graduates.


(NOTE: Lawrence’s ankle injury did not heal in time for him to make the trip to Las Vegas.)

Jermaine Lawrence — 6-foot-9 power forward — Pope John XXIII/Sparta, N.J.

Summer team: New York Rens

Tournament: Fab 48 (Tip-Off Challenge Wed.; 17U Invitational Pool Thurs./Fri.)

When you can see him: WEDNESDAY — 8:30 p.m. vs. Louisiana Elite (Gorman Court 2); THURSDAY — 10:30 a.m. vs. Belmont Shore (Gorman Court 2), 9:45 p.m. vs. M33M (Gorman Court 3); FRIDAY — 1:00 p.m. vs. Net Gain Sports (Gorman Court 1).

In a nutshell: This might be a good gauge of just how firm of inroads UNLV made along the East Coast in 2011-12. UNLV is really the only school west of the heartland making a serious push for Rivals.com’s No. 19 overall prospect in the 2013 crop and one of the class’s top pure power forwards. He suffered a bad ankle sprain two weeks back while in Vegas for the LeBron James Skills Academy, but should be back near 100 percent this weekend.


Jaron Hopkins — 6-foot-5 combo guard — Dobson High/Mesa, Ariz.

Summer team: Arizona Magic Pump-N-Run 2013

Tournament: adidas Super 64 (17U Pools)

When you can see him: WEDNESDAY — 6:20 p.m. vs. Club Elite Wildcats (Eldorado Main Gym); THURSDAY— 10:40 a.m. vs. Blue Print (Valley Main Gym), 8:00 p.m. vs. 805 Basketball (Eldorado Auxiliary Gym).

In a nutshell: A later addition to UNLV’s radar during the current evaluation period, Hopkins is a fast-rising guard with good size. Ranked No. 64 overall in his class by Rivals.com, others in the hunt include UTEP, USC, Washington, Arizona, Nebraska and Oregon State. After blowing up at the adidas Invitational in Indianapolis two weeks ago, Hopkins told CBSSports.com’s Jeff Borzello that Colorado is recruiting him the hardest.


Tyree and Tyrell Robinson — 6-foot-4 wings — Lincoln High/San Diego, Calif.

Summer team: Oakland Soldiers

Tournament: Las Vegas Classic (17U Division)

When you can see them: THURSDAY — 4:40 p.m. vs. California Supreme (Durango Court 1); FRIDAY— 11:15 a.m. vs. Louisiana Elite (Durango Court 1), 7:55 p.m. vs. Seattle Rotary Select (Durango Court 1).

In a nutshell: Both football and basketball standouts, it’s unclear yet if both of the twins will play this weekend in Vegas. Tyree was hurt in action last weekend, and could be out still with an apparent ankle injury. Both are Top-150 caliber recruits as basketball players, with Tyree right now grading out as a little bit better of a prospect. It’s hard to find a top program out west not recruiting both of them for hoops, while many others around the country are interested in them for football — or possibly both. The Oakland Soldiers, as per usual, are loaded, too. Also on the roster is star 2014 forward Stanley Johnson — a UNLV target who was also a teammate of Reinhardt’s at Mater Dei — and Aaron Gordon — one of the top senior forwards in the nation, who is the younger brother of former New Mexico stalwart Drew Gordon.



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