Five things we learned from the Nike Global Challenge, which ended Sunday in Washington, D.C.
1. Reid Travis isn't a top 25 player, but he should be.
Travis, playing for USA Midwest, is maybe an inch or two shy of the ideal height for a college power forward, but there's nothing lacking in his game. The De La Salle (Minneapolis) player was a physical presence underneath with 26 points and six rebounds to lead USA Midwest to a 133-108 defeat of USA East in the third-place game. Travis may not wow with his athleticism but he seemingly is always in the right place at the right time. According to 247Sports composite rankings, he's at No. 45, a number that will rise.
"I think (the lower ranking) was a little bit exposure and not being at all the top events," Travis said. "I think I'm a different player than I was at the start of the summer, so that plays into it. There's not that much flash to my game, but I'm just trying to get the job done. I do all the dirty work."
Travis was also De La Salle's starting quarterback, but at 6-7 and 240 pounds, most think his future is in basketball. His older brother Jonah is a junior forward for Harvard's basketball team.
"He's a big influence on me," Reid said. "We played a lot of one-on-one."
2. Chris McCullough will fit in well in Syracuse's 2-3 zone.
McCullough is 6-9, with a wing span of 7-3, which gives him enormous range on defense. He's strong enough to close inside offensively and a smart enough defender to use his length to full potential. The Bronx native plays for Brewster (N.H.) Academy, the same school that produced Michigan big man Mitch McGary. McCullough averaged 17 points and 5.5 for the tournament to make the All-Tournament team.
3. Joel Berry's defense makes him a elite player.
After Tyus Jones, Berry was clearly the next best point guard at the event. The Lake Highland Prep (Orlando) guard averaged two steals a game and the North Carolina commit always seems to elevate his play when the game is on the line.
4. Theo Pinson is a matchup nightmare.
Pinson, another North Carolina commit, complemented his inside presence with an excellent outside shot. He'll be a great wing at the next level. He runs the floor exceptionally well for a 6-6 player, but he can also bang underneath.
5. Remember the name Jamal Murray.
The 6-4 guard from Kitchner, Ontario, will be a sophomore this year at Grand River (Kitchener, Ontario), yet he's already one of the top combo guards in high school.