Category: Uncategorized


Dapper Dandy’s

Part 2 of our look at Dapper Dandy’s who stood out at ‘The 8’ Tourney hosted by BigFootHoops July 26-28, 2017.


Jacobi Gordon  -6’7 Forward
Houston Hoops
Class of 2018
Cal Commit

Athletic forward who does the little things for his club  -hits the boards, plays defense, and shows a willingness to share the basketball. Active around the rim who will accept the challenge on the defensive end of the ball.  Will need to polish his offensive game to become a serious threat offensively, but has enough weapons in his arsenal to make an immediate impact as a freshman for Cal.  With a never ending motor and willingness to be a team player, look for this young man to receive quality minutes for the Golden Bears.

Mikeal-JonesMikeal Jones  -6’8 Forward
Team Final
Class of 2020
Keep your eyes out on the young athletic thoroughbred.  Nice offensive game at this stage of his development with that killer instinct you look for in major D1 players.  Plays very well on the defensive end of the ball – active on the defensive boards and blocks shots as a rim protector.  Shows the ability to finish well around the rim with bounce and makes minimal mistakes on the court.  Will need to continue to stay in the lab to become a deep threat but has the shot mechanics to get it done. Villanova has offered this stud after a strong summer outing.

James-AkinjoJames Akinjo  -6’0 Guard
Oakland Soldiers
Class of 2018

The #14 player in the State of CA for the class of 2018 (ESPN) didn’t disappoint. Living up to the hype on the biggest stages of AAU hoops this summer.  The kid is a cold assassin you fell me.  Has the craftiness and grit to get to the bucket and finish among the bigs, drops dimes while limiting turnovers, and pulls the bow and arrow from deep –  with accuracy and consistency.  Standing only six feet, this young man has the heart of a seven footer, time and time again putting his club on his back, making clutch shots and solid decision making down the stretch.  Didn’t get to see any action from Nike’s EYBL this year but rest assured this young man hand a big hand in Oakland’s 2017 Peach Jam title.   Sit when your on the defensive end of the court family or…hands down, man down.


Taeshon Cherry -6’10 Forward
Oakland Soldiers
Class of 2018
USC Commit

Major level athlete with the skill sets to make an impact at the next level.  USC commit who won’t be in college for too long.  Runs the floor with the best of them, looking to bang and be physical as a PF should.  Finishes with his nice frame, good feet, and elite level offense skills around the rim.  Very good feel for the game.  High basketball IQ allows him to make up for mistakes and capitalize on his opponents miscues.  The #4 player in the State of CA for the Class of 2018(ESPN) will be a major impact his senior season and an McDonald’s All American selection come seasons end.  Look for him to be on the radar of every NBA teams’ one and done scout list.


Rechon ‘Leaky’ Black – 6’7 Guard
Team CP3
Class of 2018
North Carolina Commit

Big guard, big skills, big pay day for the University of North Carolina, as this young man brings his A game to the Tar Heels.  All around solid player with intangibles you would expect from a North Carolina recruit.  High basketball IQ, solid play on both ends of the floor, and has that proven ability to get it done on the big stage.  We like this smooth operator and the impact he will make on the collegiate level.  Court ‘savy-ness’ and willingness to be a team player, will catapult Leaky to immediate star status.  Dean Smith is getting another quality player to continue the UNC tradition.

Become great at what you do.


Leaving so soon?


So the tourney is winding down and your club didn’t make it to the ‘ship.  It was a tough tournament, taking your bumps and bruises as a unit.  What’s the focal point of your participation in tournaments? Trophies?  Prestige? Swag?  PopScout is a bit concerned because many of the clubs aren’t sticking around to see the championship game after they get bounced in bracket/pool play.  Why not stick around for the ‘ship and truly take this time to be a learning moment?


Many coaches, such as CBC Head Coach Andre Chevalier, prefer to take their bumps and bruises by playing up a division.  Although it may make for a very long tournament, at the end of the day, it may pay huge dividends for the development of players.  Image by PopScout.

We understand how difficult it is to stick around after a defeat.  Coaches giving their post game talks and parents ready to vent on their way home from the game. No one wants to stick around with such a bad taste in their mouths after a tough defeat. But what if your team stuck around and watched the next several games as a teaching tool?  Aren’t we in this for the long haul and for the benefit of the kids?  I mean, if you made it to the ‘ship, you were going to stay anyway.  What better way to gauge your play than by watching those who have made it to the big dance, put in some work?  It’s not all about playing on the court, but being a student of the game as well – this applies to players and coaches alike.  Something to consider family.

All you 12u and under young bucks, take a look at the 2017 Platinum Division Championship Game of the Las Vegas Live Tourney hosted by Big Foot Hoops.  Good way to gauge where your teams are and what you guys should focus on during year round play.

Become great at what you do.


Sending a Message


Does it come down to wins and loses or do you have another philosophy behind your AAU program?  Image taken during the 2017 Las Vegas Live Tourney hosted by BigFootHoops.

The Summer circuit has come to a close.  Some teams have done very well, while others must head back to the drawing board – possibly to tweak or make some minor adjustments – while others must scrap their whole system and begin from scratch.  Whatever the case may be, it’s going to boil down to a very simple question for your program:

How are you approaching the game of basketball?



Many clubs look for the support of parents to create a program that’s beneficial for all.  What happens when a kid has the talent but parents can’t afford the AAU grind?


Financial Standpoint
If it’s financially based, because if it is so, chances are you’re finding that there isn’t too much profit in the AAU circuit from the get go.  Teams have to generate income for start up costs,  practice facilities, tournament fees, uniforms, etc.  Expenses across the board – from gym time to tournament entry fees just to name a few – seem to be rising, as everyone’s getting their hands on a piece of the AAU pie.  Many team managers and presidents have spoken of just breaking even, sometimes dipping into their own savings to keep operations afloat.



Many AAU programs start because dad has the best interest for his son so he decides to start a program.  Without the proper knowledge of the game, this can lead to a dead end road for your kid and your program.  Image by PopScout.


The Next Best Thing
Maybe you’re looking for the next big thing.  That star player that will take your program to the next level.  Chances are he/she has already been contacted by all of the top programs so, although you may have them on your squad for the time being, as soon as an opportunity arises for them to jump to a major AAU club, it’s adios amigos.  Would you blame them, consider they may have a shot at a free education and chances of pursuing their dreams of playing in the league.


It’s great when we can give back and see the development of young players over the course of their development. 

Your passion for the game
We’ve played the game before and feel as though we could truly make a difference in the lives of youths.   Many of us have horror stories growing up, dealing with coaches who didn’t have our best interest at heart. For those of us who really care, it becomes a challenge because of the grind, associated with AAU basketball.  Practices, tournaments, conditioning, and the list goes on and on.  Those who don’t have the time and luxury of developing a grassroots program find themselves between a rock and a hard place, unable to fully handle the commitments associated with running a program that has become a full time job for most.


 This summer there were over 2,000 teams in Las Vegas at various tournaments – all trying to stake their claim as the best of the best.

One things for sure is that the excitement and buzz of AAU basketball is at an all time high.  The stakes are big:  win that elusive college scholarship that will change the scope of your life forever, staking your claim as one of the true ballers from your hood  It’s coming down to much more than wins and loses these days on the AAU circuit.

Become Great at what you do.


Chelsey Gipson: PopScout 2017 City Section Player of the Year


2017 Senior Guard Chelsey Gipson gets a high five from fans during the 2016 Palisades Beach Invitational Tourney.  Image by PopScout.

Chelsey Gipson is PopScout’s  2017 City Section Player of the Year.  This young lady – time and time again – showed why she was selected the MVP of the Western League by CIF voters, leading her team to a 25-10 record.  She scores from all three levels of the court and was able to play at a high efficiency, even though he was asked most of the time to play a full 32 minutes.Chelsey also gained valuable experience at the 2G position, while allow her teammates to get experience running the Point.  Showing the ability and humbleness to defer to her teammates, will only help her development when running the PG for LMU next season.  The ESPN 4 Star, 95 Grade player was a joy to watch.  O yeah, did we mention her demeanor off the court?  Never walking around with her chest stuck out – staying humble among all the praise and accolades.  A super high character young lady indeed.

Take a look at some clips of Chelsey against Valencia during the 2017 Mater Dei Matt Denning Hoop Classic.  She shows why she deserves all the praise. She’ll be an instant impact player for the Lions next season.  God Bless you young lady and thanks for your commitment to the game we all love.  We wish you the best of luck  – not only on the hardwood floor – but in life general.

Become Great at what you do.


2016-17 StudMuffins

PopScout was very impressed with the amount of talent this year on the Girls Cali’ BBall Hoop Circuit.  PopScout was out and about… filming games, taking pics, and evaluating the play of these young ‘soldierettes’.  We’ll be taking a closer look at many Stud Muffins that stood out in the weeks to come, so that players, coaches, and perspective scouts, can have an idea of what’s on the burner in Southern California – just in case you’re out of the loop.   One thing for sure is that you don’t (rarely) see character issues from the girls.  They tend to be focused, locked in, and willing to do what it takes to catapult their team to victory.  No coaching headaches for the coaching staff you feel me.

Take a look at a slideshow of some ballers who stood out at tourneys and league play from the 2016-17 season.  Make sure you young ladies get back in the lab real soon and continue to perfect your craft.  Stay thirsty my friends.

Become Great at what you do.


Weekend Hoops Schedule


Westchester Head Coach Ed Azzam during the Redondo Union PAC Shore Tourney.  Image by PopScout.

Westchester Basketball Challenge
Jan 7, 2017

1:00pm Dorsey vs Highland
2:30pm St. Bernard vs South Gate
4:00pm Santa Monica vs Gahr
5:30pm Westchester vs Bishop Montgomery


Westchester Senior Guard Briana Anugwom.  This young lady is special.  Image by PopScout.

2017 Matt Denning Hoops Classic
Girls Hoops

 10:30am Huntington Beach  vs  Canyon
12:00pm Santa Margarita  vs Sonora
 1:30pm   Palisades  vs Valencia
 3:00pm  Fairmont Prep vs Mark Keppel
 4:30pm  Mater Dei vs Westchester
 6:00pm  La Jolla Country Day  vs Harvard Westlake

 7:30pm  Troy  vs  Windward

Redondo Union Take Flight Challenge
Redondo Union High
Friday January 6, 2017
5:00pm Lynwood vs Bishop O’Dowd
6:30pm Redondo Union vs Camarillo
8:00pm Santa Monica vs Bishop Montgomery


Loyola Sr. PG Khristion Courseault sweet talking his way to the rack against Cassius Stanley.  Image by PopScout.

Redondo Union Take Flight Challenge
Redondo Union High
Saturday January 7, 2017

12:00pm Windward vs Compton
1:30pm Brentwood vs Villa Park
3:00pm Loyola vs Leuzinger
5:00pm Birmingham vs Heritage Christian
6:30pm Redondo vs Los Altos
8:00pm Santa Margarita vs Roosevelt


Sierra Canyon PG Remy Martin. Arizona State Commit.

Sierra Canyon Showcase
Sierra Canyon High
Jan 7, 2017

Chatsworth vs. Simi Valley, 12:30 p.m.
Crenshaw vs. St. Augustine, 2 p.m.
Oak Park vs. Army-Navy Academy, 3:30 p.m.
Bishop Gorman vs. Cantwell-Sacred Heart, 5:15 p.m.
Sierra Canyon vs. Bishop O’Dowd, 7 p.m.
Rancho Christian vs. San Gabriel Academy, 8:30 p.m.


Alemany Jr. Guard Malia Bambrick.

Alemany Showcase
Alemany High
Jan 07, 2017

11:30 am Cleveland H.S. vs. Reseda
1 pm Viewpoint H.S. vs. Pacifica (Oxnard)
2:30 pm West Ranch H.S. vs. Royal
4 pm (girls) Alemany vs. Serra (Gardena)
5:30 pm St. Francis H.S. vs. Canyon
7 pm Oaks Christian H.S. vs. La Canada
8:30 pm Sylmar H.S. vs. Shalhevet


Sherman Oaks Notre Dame Freshman Ziaire Williams.

3rd Annual
Saturday, January 7
at Long Beach Jordan High School

11:00 pm L.B. Cabrillo vs Santa Fe
12:35 pm L.B. Wilson vs Torrance
2:10 pm Lakewood vs Capistrano Valley Christian
3:45 pm Canyon (Anaheim) vs Sunnyside (Fresno)
5:20 pm Etiwanda vs Maranatha
6:55 pm L.B Jordan vs Notre Dame (SO)


Van Nuys Sr. Guard Kevin Hurlic III.

Van Nuys Showcase Event
Van Nuys High School
Jan 7, 2017

2:30pm Renaissance Academy vs. San Fernando
4pm LaVerne Lutheran vs. Santa Clarita Christian
5:30pm Valencia vs. Calabassas
7pm Hart vs. Van Nuys
8:30pm Valley Torah vs. Palmdale Aerospace Academy


2017 Matt Denning Hoops Classic Schedule


Palisades PG / LMU commit Chelsey Gipson. 5 Star / 95 Scouts Grade by ESPN.

Matt Denning Hoops Classic Girls Schedule
January 7, 2017 – Mater Dei High

Canyon vs Huntington Beach 10:30
Sonora vs Santa Margarita 12pm
Palisades vs Valencia 1:30pm
Fairmont Prep vs Mark Keppel 3pm
Mater Dei vs Westchester 430pm
La Jolla CD vs Harvard Westlake 6pm
WIndward vs Troy 7:30pm


Troy High – Cal Commit, 98 Grade / 5 Star Senior Kianna Smith.  Image by PopScout


The Classic @ Damian: Riley Battin


6’7 Jr Forward Riley Battin warms up before opening round play of the 2016 The Classic @ Damian Tourney.  Image by PopScout.

What if you couldn’t jump out the gym or didn’t have ankle breaking handles??  You would have to focus on the fundamentals of the game.  That’s just what Riley Battin of Oak Park does.  He has the ability to play fundamentally sound while still getting the job done.  The Jr. Forward is rated an 83 grade, 4 Star player by ESPN and will continue to improve his game throughout the course of this year and next, to cement himself as one of the best forwards in the Class of 2018.

Take a look at highlights from The Classic @ Damian tourney where Oak Park gave Birmingham a scare before succumbing by the score of 83-78.  It will be nice to see this young mans’ development during the summer and Senior season as he looks to take his team to the next level.  It’s all about the fundamentals of the game at the end of the day.  Stay in the Lab young men.

Become great at what you do.

Boys High School HoopsUncategorized

Van Nuys Wolves: New kids on the block


The Van Nuys Wolves basketball team is set to make a serious run in Division III basketball this year.  Having played earlier this season in the Trevor Ariza Tip Off Classic hosted by Westchester High –  and holding their own against veteran teams such as Dorsey High and St Bernard –  look for the Wolves to be a serious contender come post season play.  The team currently sits at 6-2, taking care of business yesterday (Dec 12, 2016) against Reseda High by a score of 66-40.  Their next opponent is Thursday, December 15th at home against Robert F. Kennedy at 4pm.


Sr. Kevin Hurlic III is a nice looking prospect for Van Nuys High.  The lefty has a sweet stroke from long range and a high basketball IQ.  Image by PopScout.

We love the focus and execution from the team and their coaching staff – showing the ability to maximize players’ potential. It’s still early on in the season as teams are still developing their chemistry and getting serious about their game as a whole, but Head Coach Evan Porter is doing a wonderful job, not only with X’s and O’s, but also with holding kids accountable for their actions and teaching them life lessons that go far beyond the game of basketball.


Look for Jr Guard Tyree Winborn – who loves to pull the bow and arrow –  to make some noise for the Wolves.  Image by PopScout.

As we all know, there will be life after basketball.  Just how much you prepare yourself outside the court while tackling the challenges of the game of basketball, will go along way in how successful your are in life.  Sometimes players don’t understand life lessons at this point in time but as they grow older, they appreciate those who truly cared for them.  Keep doing what you do Coach.

Take a look at some highlights of the game against Reseda High, December 12, 2016. We spotlight Jr. Guard Tyree Winborn who has some good skill-sets at the PG position. The kid can shoot the rock from long range as well as finishes on the break and in traffic.  Van Nuys will be hosting tournament games (JFK No Frills Tourney) January 2-5 2017, in their own backyard.  Make it your New Years resolution to come out and enjoy some basketball.  It’s not always about the top notch clubs but also those who show a passion for the game at all levels of play.

Become great at what you do.

Boys High School HoopsFairfax High SchoolUncategorized

Basketball 101: Finishing


Fairfax was able to defeat John Muir high school and win the Maranatha Rose City Classic.  Tourney MVP Ethan Anderson, seen here in earlier round play, has developed that killer instinct needed to finish ballgames and catapult his game to the next level.  Image by PopScout.

Fairfax defeated John Muir High school by a score of  59-48 to capture the title of the Maranatha Rose City Classic Tourney.  Their first under new Head Coach Steve Baik.  It was a good way to start the 2016-17 campaign and gives you an idea of where your club stands.  Some might say that the competition this year  during pool play wasn’t up to par, but winning a championship in the 14 annual Rose City Classic always gives you that edge –  as you now take on much steeper competition and tournaments ahead.


Coach Baik  –  and his coaching staff – win their first tourney title with him calling the shots, now that he has moved on from Chino Hills, after going undefeated last season. He still hasn’t lost a regular season game in a while as Fairfax went 4-0 during tournament play.  Image by PopScout.

4th Quarter semifinal play as Fairfax takes on a pesky Pasadena team who were missing their top player Bryce Hamilton due to an ankle injury suffered from the previous game.  His counterpart, Darius Brown II showed up and showed out, almost single-handedly winning the game for his team.  Fairfax showed why they will be a contender for City Section supremacy – showing the ability to finish games when it counts. Let’s hope all is well and everyone is at full strength as the season progresses.

Become Great at what you do