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2014 UA Invitational: Friday Night Standouts
by Eric Hampford, Future150 (12:52 PM CT, Tue May 20, 2014)
2015 SF Derrick Jones is a highlight reel waiting to happen.
2015 SF Derrick Jones is a highlight reel waiting to happen.
Eric Hampford
Eric Hampford:

Future150 GM / Senior National Analyst. Covering high and middle school basketball.

Houston, TX (Future150) -- On Friday night, the 2014 Under Armour Invitational kicked off action in Houston, Texas with showcase games pitting teams in the East Conference against teams in the West Conference. What made the battles more interesting was that it was the first time any of these teams had a chance to go against one another during league play. The action was fast and furious on the opening night, and several prospects shined in the competitive atmosphere. The following are some standouts from the first round of games.

J.J. Caldwell, 2016 PG, Houston Defenders: The 6-foot lead guard had a fantastic opening round game in a big win over Team Thad. He controlled the pace of the game from start to finish and didn’t let another star 2016 guard, Jaylen Fisher, speed him up when the game got close. He is a strong prospect who can get into the lane at will and is showing that he is one of the best point men in his class nationally.

Jake Silpe, 2015 PG, Jersey Shore Warriors: One of the most consistent performers over the weekend was the 6-foot-2 lead guard. An excellent on-ball defender with a high IQ on the floor, Jake knows when to score and when to find his teammates. He is one of the leaders in steals at the UA Invitational, and will be an excellent guard at the college level. Bucknell, Boston, Colgate & Dartmouth are just a few of the schools who have offered already.

Derrick Jones, 2015 SF, We R1: A consensus top 30 prospect in the class, Jones did nothing to hurt his stock over the weekend. The 6-foot-7 wing is one of the most explosive athletes in the class, and he showcased that in Houston. His ability as a rebounder and shot-blocker from the wing is extremely impressive. If his ball skills and shooting develop, there is no doubt he can become a top 10 prospect in the class. As of right now, however, he is most effective slashing to the basket and finishing around the rim.

Bruce Dixon, 2015 PF, Team Charlotte: The 6-foot-6 Hickory Grove (NC) post had a big weekend, thanks to his high motor, athleticism, and rebounding ability. He held his team together in the post, helping to lead them to a championship at the Under Armour Invitational. Currently, he holds offers from North Carolina Central, Furman & UNC-Greensboro.

Xavier Eaglin, 2015 PF, Houston Defenders: An explosive athlete and finisher around the rim, the 6'7" power forward from Dayton High School (TX) is putting together a nice spring AAU season. He finishes well around the rim and is a solid help-side defender. A high academic prospect, he currently holds offers from Yale, Loyola (MD) & Columbia.

Dupree McBrayer, 2015 G, New Heights: One prospect surging in the Northeast recently is the 6-foot-4 guard. The athletic slasher currently holds offers from Minnesota, Seton Hall, Pittsburgh & Drexel. Interest is coming from Penn State, St. John's & Rhode Island. He just recently decided to reclassify, so look for his recruitment to continue to heat up this summer. 

Nick Rutherford, 2015 G, SYF Players: The 6-foot-3 combo guard had a big game on Friday night, scoring over 20 points for the SYF Players, using punishing drives to the basket, where he scored at will against defenders. He is a very strong kid who has good ball skills as well. Currently, Northern Colorado, UTEP & Western Illinois have all offered. Interest is coming from Baylor, Penn State, Butler, Florida Atlantic & Santa Clara. 


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