CORE SKILLS SATURDAY kicked off last weekend. I believe it’s the one event 7th and 8th graders should not miss. It is the final time in their basketball careers when they will have extended time to be in the gym. It also regardless if we like it or not, is when kids start to separate themselves from other kids. You get to see who the most talented kids are, the most athletic and the most skills. It’s when you discover the all important work ethic and ability to show up consistently.  You learn which give are confident and which kids you can coach hard. You learn who is getting better and who is hanging around for show. 7th and 8th grade Core Skills paints a picture and in 99% of the cases not much changes when they get to high school. CORE SKILLS SATURDAY’S  is when kids start building that all important name recognition and a competitive nature.Week one did not have any surprises like in past years. It really just confirmed a few things. As we move along the next 9 weeks some stars and new faces will emerge. It’s a great chance for kids to measure their games and for everyone to know which players will be the stars of tomorrow. College coaches you be wise to follow each Tuesday as Iwill give you a full update as to who the next stars and players that will be on your wish list one day… it’s a new day and the early bird gets the worm

ARIANNA WISSEN OF BRICK  is really not a stranger to anyone who knows the best young players in the state of New Jersey. She just comfirmed what many believed at Core Skills Saturday. She is the best player right now in the 2028 class. She is tracking as a future D1 player and All Shore player. That’s because first start with her work ethic. Nobody in the 2028 class has her work ethic or commitment. Next she has played against current high school and college D1 players. She embraces competition and her development. Things like shooting on Christmas eve or Thanksgiving Day with D1 players and being the only 8th grader in the gym is nothing knew. She has total confidence in her ability. She is a deadly shooter to 25 ft and gets it off with lighting quickness. I sent a copy of her highlight video to a college coaches and listen to this words


That is a fact and here is another fact. Her handle is filled with creativity and purpose. She gets to spots like no other young kid in her class. It’s why she seems to finish everything at the rim. Her vision is off the charts as she reads 2nd level defenders like a book. Despite her size she is an aggressive defender. On Saturday I discovered something I had no seen from her in the past. Her ability to see players streaking up the floor and hitting them with fire ball dimes. So much it reminds me of Nina Emnace( Trinity Hall/ Harvard), strong words but facts.  She is lighting quick and has every dribble move in her bag. But it’s her ability to shoot off screens that is so impressive. She has a next level skill set in the area. My guess by the time we get to the 2028 GOLDEN DOZEN, she will be the #1 ranked player in the class. She just loaded with talent, a work ethic and begs for coaching. Brick is getting their best player in decades.

ALLISON McANDREW  is planning to attend COLTS NECK HIGH SCHOOL. This is big in too many ways to explain. She is the type of kid who seems to always end up at SJV or RBC. But it’s clear Allison wants to make her own footsteps in the sand. Make no mistake this the most athletic player in the 2028 class. She is long, quick and physical. She plays with a real edge and seems to be getting better by the second. Her passing skills and rebounding skills are going to be a factor from day one in high school. She runs the floor and because of her toughness will be able to guard forwards and guards. She is just murder in transition because she finishes everything in traffic and it is a gift. This is a kid who can run all day. Now throw in the no frills handle and active hands and quickness. She is right now a deadly shooter to 20 feet. Her range because of her commitment will certainly get to 25 feet one day. Her ability to post up on the block is rare for young guards. Loose balls on the floor, they have her name written all over it. Her competitive nature is simply different. She goes all out each time down the court.

I CALL HER SUPERSTAR  BUT RECENTLY TOOK TO CALLING HER ROCKSTAR.  Last weekend at CORE SKILLS  she did nothing to make me want to call her anything else.

Her length, speed, quickness and toughness are things you cannot teach.  This is a player that D1 college coaches will be drooling over for years to come. ALLISON’S improvement curve has been wonderful to watch and now she has separated herself from most others in the class. This is a future 4 year starter, All Shore Player and 1000 point scorer at Colts Neck.  She is a true next level SWISS KNIFE. Folks this is the total package. The type of player Colts Neck Coach Nick Russo has been trying to get to stay home. Well couldn’t have picked a better player to be his first blue chip freshman.

JULIANNA “JULES” JASINA  is the player with the biggest upside in the 2028 class right now. That’s because she has outstanding feet and quickness for her size. Next she has a real feel for the game. She knows when to attack and when to pass. She has a body that can take up space and more importantly understands how to use it. SHE HAS ELITE HANDS RIGHT NOW. She runs the floor and is an excellent passer. This is a player with a very high IQ and understanding of the game. She has a great ability to score in the lane with either hand and then can step out and knock down jumpers. She is a rapidly improving player. Her potential is huge and that’s because she has not lived in the gym like some other kids. But she has made the commitment to the next 9 weeks at Core Skills. I believe she will be called the best if not one of the best young forwards in the Shore as we more to the spring.


That’s because she plays so hard and is intense when she steps on the floor. She is so versatile that her game will expand and grow in so many different ways. She was leading the fast break at Core Skills last weekend. That’s because she has been hiding her wonderful ball handling skills. That’s the beauty of Core Skills you get to see things about kids you did not know. Like “Jules” future natural position will be that of a small forward because she has underrated feet and guard baseline to baseline. This is a emerging young star. She has not decided where she will attend high school but she certainly will make an impact regardless when she attends. The next 9 weeks no player may benefit her more, than any player in the 2028 class.

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