A number of college players started their college basketball careers in the last week. For many it’s the fulfillment of dreams that started long before their first practice. It’s an exciting time not just the players but their families as well. There is nothing like putting on a college uniform in my opinion. But like anything else that is special it took a lot of sacrifices by a number of people for that player to wear that uniform. Most players and their families  know the journey may not have been easy….but it was worth it.


Next week CORE SKILLS will begin it Pre- Season Prep at Hoop Group. There is no question the next 7 weeks is a time for players to start there journey to get ready for their season. Core Skills will be full of players trying to do just this…get ready! There are always the gym rats, who stay ready all year. But in the high school you have a number of distractions for kids…like this little thing called school!  It’s very hard for any player who is serious about their education to get in the gym as much they would like this time of year. But the clock is clicking and now players must find the time. The good ones seem to always find the time.

unnamed[1] Future D1 guard Lindsey Mack lives in the gym

I have said for years those players who work on their skill sets and conditioning (when it doesn’t take away gym time) have a great chance of getting off to a start to their high school season. Those freshman for example who get in the gym against high school level competition always have a chance to get off to a good start. It’s interesting I ‘ve watched TRN freshman star Jenna Paul go from a player I thought struggled against the stronger older high school players in September, to a player that has adjusted to the speed and strength of the high school game. I believe the next 7 weeks is crucial to everyone preparing for the season. But freshman and players fighting for playing time have the most to gain and lose. There approach leading up to the first day of practice is in their hands.

While I say it every single year, you cannot convince parents and players of one thing. What you do in the summer and fall basketball league has zero impact on what happens during the season…REGARDLESS OF WHAT COACHES SAY. The defense is limited, the player rotations are nothing like the season and their is zero scouting. The returning players in the rotation unless their is a injury have a huge advantage over the freshman and returning players who were not in the rotation the previous year. It’s very hard to convince coaches that returning players, who were out of the rotation a year ago have improved. Those players with labels will  find shaking a label in some cases is almost impossible to do.  People don’t realize the pressure of the game is zero in the fall. The roll kids play in the summer and fall may be totally different during the season. But I do know this players who prepare and live in the gym have a better chance than those that don’t. It’s just nobody should expect it to be easy and put any weight into what happen before December 1.


I am so shocked at how every year,  at two things. How players don’t train in the fall and players with a certain weakness in their game come back with the same weakness…it just shocking to me! These players often times hide in the fall by playing in AAU games or fall league games. There hope to preform well and think that this is a sign they have improved. It’s something that goes on every year and I don’t believe it will ever change. It’s a great example of kids fooling themselves and not addressing weakness.  When I see a  ROSE CAVERLY of RBC for example and I see a player who has made REAL IMPROVMENT. She is a player that addressed her weakness.  But I also think  7 weeks is more than enough time to get ready for the season and improve on weakness…. if a player uses their time wisely.


I was recently asked by a college coach if  a certain player, she was thinking about recruiting was a gym rat and in the gym on a regular bais. She really put me on the spot, because this kid is a wonderful person and a serious talent. I told her that I believe she had the right work ethic, this was 100% true. But I told the coach she was typical of a lot of talented kids. She was not consistent and playing games was more important, than skill work….. It was not a work ethic issue!  In most cases like this one; I really believe the kid doesn’t understand and she may really feel in her heart that the games help her more. I had a parent recently say to me ” she needs the game time” this is not a uncommon feeling by many parents. Think about the kid who didn’t get playing time last season, they may feel they need court time if for any other reason than just to feel good about playing.

So we are in the run up to the high school season and some kids will have to make decisions about how to get ready. . Some will make great decisions and some will not but if it all works out in the end…IT WILL BE WORTH IT ANYWAY!….GOOD LUCK and GET IN THE GYM.



Junior COURTNEY DOBRZYNSKI of SJV moves to D1 lock status as she has received another D1 offer…

13 Juniors now have D1 offers…interesting some from the very same schools!

I believe their is a good chance Harley Kneler of  FREEHOLD TWP. becomes a D1 player by years end. The young lady right now is playing on a different level and is the ultimate GYM RAT..






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