University of Louisville signees Raymond Spalding, Deng Adel and Donovan Mitchell and University of Kentucky signees Isaiah Briscoe and Charles Matthews were among the hundreds of boys’ basketball players nominated Wednesday for selection into this spring’s McDonald’s All American Games.
In addition, every member of U of L’s top-ranked women’s recruiting class and three of UK’s four women’s signees are among the 823 combined girls’ and boys’ nominees now in the running to make arguably the nation’s most prestigious high school all-star games.
Players were nominated by high school coaches, athletic directors, principals and members of the McDonald’s All American Games Selection Committee. The 24 boys and 24 girls selected for the McDonald’s games will be announced during an ESPNU show at 6 p.m. EST Jan. 28. The doubleheader games will take place April 1 at the United Center in Chicago. Tickets go on sale 11 a.m. EST Saturday.
Five-star UK signee Skal Labissiere, who attends Lausanne Collegiate School in Memphis but is ineligible to play there this season after transferring, was not nominated. Labissiere has been playing this season on the Reach Your Dream Prep travel club, which his guardian formed. Labissiere, a surefire McDonald’s-level player, said last month that he was hopeful that his play with the RYD team would make him eligible for the McDonald’s game, but it appears he won’t have a chance to be picked.
All of U of L’s women’s signees – Asia Durr of Atlanta, Taja Cole of Virginia, Erin DeGrate of Texas, Samantha Fuehring of New Jersey and Brianna Jones of New York – were nominated.
Durr, arguably the country’s top senior, shapes up as a veritable lock to make the McDonald’s game, and it wouldn’t be surprising if any of the others were picked, too.
Among Kentuckians, Holmes’ James Bolden, a West Virginia signee; Owensboro’s Aric Holman, who is expected to attend a postgraduate prep school next year; and Knott County Central’s Camron Justice, a Vanderbilt signee; joined Trinity’s Spalding on the boys’ nominees list.
UK women’s signees Maci Morris of Bell County and Morgan Rich of Allen County Scottsville and Ashland’s Alexis Robinson (Colorado signee) were the only Kentucky girls nominated. UK signee Taylor Murray of Maryland also was nominated, but highly ranked signee Batouly Camara of New York was not. She’s a fifth-year high school player and not eligible for selection.
Among the men’s signees, New Jersey’s Briscoe, arguably the nation’s top point guard, would seem like a sure bet to make the McDonald’s game. Matthews, of Chicago, has a reasonably good shot as a high four-star player. Spalding, Adel, who attends school in Bradenton, Fla., and Mitchell, of New Hampshire, all have been rated five stars by at least one major website, and any of them should have a decent chance as well.
UK five-star targets Stephen Zimmerman, Malik Newman, Cheick Diallo, Caleb Swanigan, Thomas Bryant, Jaylen Brown and Ivan Rabb all were nominated, and most if not all of them figure to make the game.
Indiana men’s signees Juwan Morgan and OG Anunoby also have been nominated.
Corydon’s Bronson Kessinger (Indiana State) and Bedford North Lawrence’s Jenna Allen (Michigan State), Alexa Bailey (Butler) and Dominique McBride (Purdue) are among the Indiana nominees. Swanigan, of Fort Wayne Homestead, is as well.