Category: cole anthony

Elite players humbled and motivated by becoming McDonald’s All Americans

<p><strong>School:</strong> Montverde Academy (Montverde, Fla.)<br/><strong>Pos:</strong> Power Forward<br/><strong>Team:</strong> East<br/><strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-8/210<br/><strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 16<br/><strong>College:</strong> Uncommitted</p><p><em>Photo: Gregory Payan, AP</em></p><p> </p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.)<br />
<strong>Pos:</strong> Point Guard<br />
<strong>Team:</strong> East<br />
<strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-3/185<br />
<strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 2<br />
<strong>College:</strong> Uncommitted</p>

<p><em>Photo: Bob Quinn/News-Press</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)<br/><strong>Pos:</strong> Center<br/><strong>Team:</strong> East<br/><strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-10/230<br/><strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 18<br/><strong>College:</strong> North Carolina</p><p><em>Photo: Gregory Payan, AP</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> NSU University (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)<br/><strong>Pos:</strong> Center<br/><strong>Team:</strong> East<br/><strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-10/275<br/><strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 3<br/><strong>College:</strong> Duke</p><p><em>Photo: Amanda Inscore/The News-Press</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> Holy Spirit Prep (Atlanta, Ga.)<br/><strong>Pos:</strong> Shooting Guard<br/><strong>Team:</strong> East<br/><strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-4/205<br/><strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 5<br/><strong>College:</strong> Uncommitted</p><p><em>Photo: Gregory Payan, AP</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> Center Grove (Greenwood, Ind.)<br/><strong>Pos:</strong> Center<br/><strong>Team:</strong> East<br/><strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-9/231<br/><strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 25<br/><strong>College:</strong> Indiana</p><p><em>Photo: Michelle Pemberton/Indystar</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> Porter-Gaud (Charleston, S.C.)<br/><strong>Pos:</strong> Point Guard<br/><strong>Team:</strong> East<br/><strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-6/200<br/><strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 21<br/><strong>College:</strong> Tennessee</p><p><em>Photo: Jim Dedmon/USA TODAY Sports</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> Ranney School (Tinton Falls, N.J.)<br/><strong>Pos:</strong> Small Forward<br/><strong>Team:</strong> East<br/><strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-5/185<br/><strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 12<br/><strong>College:</strong> Florida</p><p><em>Photo: Gregory Payan/AP</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> Federal Way (Wash.)<br/><strong>Pos:</strong> Power Forward<br/><strong>Team:</strong> East<br/><strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-10/185<br/><strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 6<br/><strong>College:</strong> Uncommitted</p><p><em>Photo: Gregory Payan/AP</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> Cox Mill (Charlotte, N.C.)<br/><strong>Pos:</strong> Small Forward<br/><strong>Team:</strong> East<br/><strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-6/215<br/><strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 19<br/><strong>College:</strong> Duke</p><p><em>Photo: Jim Dedmon/USA TODAY Sports</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> La Lumiere (La Porte, Ind.)<br/><strong>Pos:</strong> Center<br/><strong>Team:</strong> East<br/><strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-9/245<br/><strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 4<br/><strong>College:</strong> Washington</p><p><em>Photo: Doug McSchooler/IndyStar</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> Mountain Brook (Ala.)<br/><strong>Pos:</strong> Power Forward<br/><strong>Team:</strong> East<br/><strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-8/210<br/><strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 22<br/><strong>College:</strong> Uncommitted</p><p><em>Photo: Jason Vinlove/USA TODAY Sports</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> Ranney School (Trinton Falls, N.J.)<br/><strong>Pos:</strong> Shooting Guard<br/><strong>Team:</strong> West<br/><strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-5/170<br/><strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 14<br/><strong>College:</strong> Villanova</p><p><em>Photo: Gregory Payan/AP</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)<br/><strong>Pos:</strong> Shooting Guard<br/><strong>Team:</strong> West<br/><strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-6/206<br/><strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 7<br/><strong>College:</strong> Arizona</p><p><em>Photo: Gregory Payan/AP</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> John Marshall (Rochester, Minn.)<br />
<strong>Pos:</strong> Power Forward<br />
<strong>Team:</strong> West<br />
<strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-8/214<br />
<strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 10<br />
<strong>College:</strong> Uncommitted</p>

<p><em>Photo: Logan Newman/USA TODAY Sports</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> The Villages Charter (Fla.)<br />
<strong>Pos:</strong> Point Guard<br />
<strong>Team:</strong> West<br />
<strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-4/185<br />
<strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 32<br />
<strong>College:</strong> Florida</p>

<p><em>Photo: Amber Searls/USA TODAY Sports</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> Pinnacle (Phoenix, Ariz.)<br />
<strong>Pos:</strong> Point Guard<br />
<strong>Team:</strong> West<br />
<strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-3/180<br />
<strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 8<br />
<strong>College:</strong> Arizona</p>

<p><em>Photo: Darryl Webb/Arizona Republic</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> South Garland (Garland, Texas)<br />
<strong>Pos:</strong> Shooting Guard<br />
<strong>Team:</strong> West<br />
<strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-2/190<br />
<strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 11<br />
<strong>College:</strong> Kentucky</p>

<p><em>Photo: Jon Lopez/Nike</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> Rancho Christian (Temecula, Calif.)<br />
<strong>Pos:</strong> Power Forward<br />
<strong>Team:</strong> West<br />
<strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-9/210<br />
<strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 15<br />
<strong>College:</strong> USC</p>

<p><em>Photo: Gregory Payan/AP</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)<br />
<strong>Pos:</strong> Power Forward<br />
<strong>Team:</strong> West<br />
<strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-9/235<br />
<strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 20<br />
<strong>College:</strong> Villanova</p>

<p><em>Photo: Gregory Payan/AP</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> Kennedy Catholic (Hermitage, Pa.)<br />
<strong>Pos:</strong> Center<br />
<strong>Team:</strong> West<br />
<strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-8/230<br />
<strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 37<br />
<strong>College:</strong> West Virginia</p>

<p><em>Photo: Stephen R. Sylvanie/USA TODAY Sports</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> Roselle (N.J.) Catholic<br />
<strong>Pos:</strong> Small Forward<br />
<strong>Team:</strong> West<br />
<strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-7/200<br />
<strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 9<br />
<strong>College:</strong> Kentucky</p>

<p><em>Photo: Gregory Payan/AP</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> Rockwall (Texas)<br />
<strong>Pos:</strong> Small Forward<br />
<strong>Team:</strong> West<br />
<strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 6-7/190<br />
<strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 33<br />
<strong>College:</strong> Louisville</p>

<p><em>Photo: 247Sports</em></p>

<p><strong>School:</strong> East (Memphis, Tenn.)<br />
<strong>Pos:</strong> Center<br />
<strong>Team:</strong> West<br />
<strong>Ht/Wt:</strong> 7-0/230<br />
<strong>ESPN Ranking:</strong> 1<br />
<strong>College:</strong> Memphis</p>

<p><em>Photo: Andrew Jansen/News-Leader</em></p>

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Cole Anthony knows that this will sound cliché and contrived, but he’s never been the type of player that assumes his standing as No. 1 overall player in USA Today Sports’ Chosen 25 automatically affords him certain accolades.
RELATED: McDonald’s All American Game Girls Roster
“I work for everything,” Anthony said. “I don’t even want anything given to me; that’s not how I’m built.”
That’s why the Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, Va.) point guard was genuinely ecstatic on Thursday to learn that he was one of 24 players selected to play in this year’s McDonald’s All American Game, which will commence on March 27 at State Farm Arena in Atlanta.
RELATED: USA Today Sports’ Chosen 25 Basketball Rankings
“It’s such an honor,” Anthony said. “This was a dream of mine. It makes me feel like I’m one step closer to fulfilling my ultimate dream.”
Florida led the way with six All Americans, New Jersey had three and Indiana and Texas had two apiece.
Duke, Florida, Villanova, Arizona and Kentucky had the most recruits represented on the boys’ side with two apiece.
Twenty-one of the seniors in USA TODAY Sports’ Chosen 25 were picked for the game.
Six players remain undecided, including Anthony, who will lead the East.
He’ll be joined by Holy Spirit Prep (Atlanta) shooting guard Anthony Edwards, ranked No. 2 overall in the Chosen 25, La Lumiere School (La Porte, Ind.) forward Isaiah Stewart, a Washington commit who is ranked No. 3 overall in the Chosen 25, and University School (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) forward Vernon Carey Jr., a Duke commit who is ranked No. 4 overall in the Chosen 25.
The West is highlighted by Memphis (Tenn.) East High School center James Wiseman, a Memphis signee who is ranked No. 5 overall in the Chosen 25, Federal Way (Wash.) High School forward Jaden McDaniels, a forward who is ranked No. 6 overall in the Chosen 25, South Garland (Texas) High School guard Tyrese Maxey, a Kentucky signee who is ranked No. 7 overall in the Chosen 25, and IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.) shooting guard Josh Green, an Arizona signee who is ranked No. 8 overall in the Chosen 25.
Stewart vividly recalls watching Thomas Bryant, now a forward with the Washington Wizards, play in the 2015 All American Game with his father. Shortly thereafter, Stewart created an Instagram and posted a picture of the All American Game with a caption that read “goals.”
“Now here I am,” Stewart said. “It’s surreal. I’m taking this opportunity seriously because it’s a blessing. When I get there, I want to be in the moment and take it all in. It will be fun, but it’s gonna be a dogfight in the gym. It’s not just a vacation. Time to go to work.”
Follow Jason Jordan on Twitter: @JayJayUSATODAY

Cole Anthony: The life of a young star at Oak Hill

There’s hundreds, if not thousands of prep schools across the country, but there’s only one Oak Hill.
With NBA alumni such as Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony, Rajon Rondo and Rod Strickland, there’s always just a little extra juice in the building when Oak Hill comes to play. Last Saturday, Oak Hill arrived in Charlotte, N.C. for an overtime battle against a feisty Moravian Prep squad. Legendary head coach Steve Smith has quite a history in the Queen City.
Oak Hill Academy head coach Steve Smith (Photo: Aguallo Studios)
In 2008, Coach Smith brought his Oak Hill team to the Charlotte suburb of Concord to play against one of the best teams in Cabarrus County history. Thousands of fans packed into the Cabarrus Arena for a regular season matchup between Oak Hill and Concord High School.
That meeting was a lot like Saturday’s game, a scrappy Concord team was winning by two points with seconds remaining when Brandon Jennings secured a missed free throw, went the length of the court and buried a game-winning three-point basket at the buzzer.
Nowadays, perhaps the most relevant factor that connects Oak Hill to Charlotte is Cole Anthony. The New York product recently announced his final six schools with North Carolina and Wake Forest both making the cut. As the game approaches, the stands are littered with Carolina blue, Demon Deacon black and gold, and more than a couple Duke fans who are dreaming about what could have been. At its core, Charlotte is a college basketball town masquerading as a big city.
Oak Hill Academy star Cole Anthony (Photo: Aguallo Studios)
Two hours before tip-off, Oak Hill pulls into Carmel Christian School. I’m standing on the opposite side of the facility upon Oak Hill’s arrival. At the time, there’s a tight battle happening between Louisville commit Josh Nickelberry and Alabama commit Juwan Gary— and I’m filming every second of it. However, I stop for a moment, as I recognize that there’s a shift in the environment.
As the players walk across the gym to sit near the top of the bleachers, there’s a quiet excitement that descends upon the crowd. I’d describe it like the moment when a player is about to rise up for a massive fast break dunk, the air gets sucked out of the building and everyone waits in anticipation for what’s about to happen.
Before the game, fans are treated to the dunk contest which features the event’s top high-flyers. Representing Oak Hill is Darrick Jones Jr. and he’s got a couple of tricks up his sleeve. On several dunks, Jones enlists the help of Anthony. During one, Jones soars over Anthony for a tomahawk jam while Anthony captures the entire thing on video.
Cole Antony (middle) takes a video as Darrick Jones Jr. (back) prepares to dunk over Oak Hill Academy players Anthony and Daniel Scott (front). (Photo: Aguallo Studios)
On another, Anthony tosses an alley-oop off the side of the backboard for a windmill dunk by Jones. Anthony especially likes this dunk after the crowd erupts with amazement.
The Oak Hill Show is beginning.
At the end of the dunk contest, the team retreats to the locker room before making their reappearance for warm-ups. There’s something special about those royal red jerseys with the golden trim and white Jumpman logo that only escalates the Oak Hill mystique. The players look like real-life superheroes, especially in the eyes of the many kids in attendance.
From left to right: Daniel Scott, B.J. Mack and Evan Johnson of Oak Hill Academy. (Photo: Aguallo Studios)
In the upcoming game, the Warriors get all that they can handle from Moravian Prep. After leading by 14 at the half, Moravian Prep makes a furious comeback and even commands the lead in the final minutes of regulation. With 27.2 seconds remaining, Moravian Prep has the ball with an opportunity to win. The massive underdogs receive a great open look for three, but the shot rims out and the Warriors are fortunate to get to overtime.
Much like that game ten years ago against Concord High School, Oak Hill makes Moravian Prep pay for giving them a second chance. In one sequence, Cole Anthony drives hard to the basket and connects on a tough and-1 basket to give the Warriors a lead that they would never relinquish.
The Warriors escape with a hard fought 92-85 victory.
From left to right: Oak Hill Academy players Cam Thomas, Cole Anthony, Jequann Roberson and Darrick Jones Jr. (Photo: Aguallo Studios)
After the game, fans are eager to meet their heroes— especially Cole Anthony. Before Anthony can even make it to the locker room, he’s surrounded by 10 kids on the court asking for a picture or an autograph. Eventually, Cole is able to make it to the locker room after promising he’ll fulfill their requests at the end. For around 20 minutes, dozens of kids collect in the area directly outside of the locker room. Several Oak Hill players emerge, but the younger fans continue to wait for Anthony.
When Anthony finally reappears, he walks closely behind a teammate with a black hoodie over his head. Perhaps Cole is just hoping to just make it to the bus and be with his teammates, but the kids are quick to notice his disguise as Anthony is practically backed into a corner by the crowd.
As Cole takes a photo with every excited young fan, it appears as though he’s a little reluctant of the spotlight. Sure, he might have an Instagram following of over 240,000, a famous father and an explosive NBA-level talent , but at the end of the day— Cole is just another kid that’s hoping to make his dreams come true.
Oak Hill Academy star Cole Anthony (Photo: Aguallo Studios)
Such is the life of a young superstar playing at the nation’s most historic basketball program.
Michael McLamb is the Sports Editor at Mars Reel. Follow him on Twitter: @McLambSays
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