Home » Columns » Currently Reading:

Phillips Exeter has a little more talent this time around

September 15, 2012 Columns No Comments
hoopguy-cyan

EXETER, N.H. – At Phillips Exeter Academy, the academic qualifications of the players are not in doubt. The program annually sends most of its players to elite academic schools, which for Division I often means the Ivy and Patriot Leagues. On the hardwood, this year’s team appears to have a little more talent than those of recent years, so college coaches coming by will like what they see even more.

Jay Tilton’s team doesn’t have a lot of size, but the talent, intangibles and chemistry all look good right now. His one true big man, Kendrick Morris (6’9″ Jr. PF-C, Houston (TX)), has a good frame and moves well, and while not a big offensive factor he isn’t a major liability, either, as he is fundamentally sound. One knock on him Thursday night was that he didn’t always finish close shots, something he’ll need to do better.

They won’t lack size entirely, though, as Max Eaton (6’7″ Sr. PF, St. Petersburg (FL)) and Duncan Robinson (6’7″ Sr. SF-PF, New Castle (NH)) also give them some size in the frontcourt. Eaton has a wide frame and a mature body to go with three-point range on his jumper, and after a nice start to Thursday’s workout he cooled off a bit later. That was something Robinson didn’t do, as he was hot from long range all night long, especially off the catch. His body isn’t there yet and he can do more than shoot, but that was the big highlight for him on the evening.

The first option on the wing is likely Chris Braley (6’4″ Sr. SG-SF, Newport (ME)), who returns for his second season at the school after a fine spring and summer. Possessing a mature body and above-average athleticism, he looked to drive much more than shoot, and he seemingly got to the hoop at will and generally finished well. Tony Karalekas (6’3″ Jr. SG-SF, Naples (FL)) has a good body and hit several shots off the catch out to long range, and Keon Burns (6’3″ Sr. SG-SF, Beaverton (OR)) had a nice showing on the night and should get plenty of minutes. Tilton said Burns has been shooting the ball well since arriving, and he did more of that on Thursday, especially later on. Max Kirsch (6’2″ Fr. SG-SF, Atkinson (NH)) will also see some time but figures to be a bit player as a freshman on this veteran team.

Among the guards, Wisconsin commit Jordan Hill (6’3″ Sr. SG, Los Angeles (CA)) will surely have the biggest impact. Athletic and with a good frame that hasn’t filled out yet, he was very active and drove often, looking more to pass on the go than finish, although he finished as well. He was very aggressive, and at times he looks like he tries to play a little too fast, but there’s a lot to like about what he can do.

Harry Rafferty (5’10″ Sr. PG, Durham (NH)) will likely run the show from the outset and should have an impact that goes beyond any numbers he might put up. Simply put, Rafferty is a winner and one of the best kids you’ll ever meet as well, and now he’ll put those to work with this group. The lefty passes well and can play more than one speed, has a mature body and won’t miss often if he left open from deep. His intangibles alone will be worth points on the scoreboard every game.

Davis Reid (6’2″ Sr. SG, Lenexa (KS)) and Curtis Arsenault (6’2″ Sr. SG, Berlin (NH)) will also figure into the mix on the perimeter. Reid is a lefty who may first catch your eyes with his shooting ability, but he’s solid all around as he also had a nice steal and breakaway layup one time and later drove and finished while getting fouled to clinch a game. Arsenault has a good body and made a nice block of a Morris layup attempt one time down, then he turned right around and hit a three-pointer at the other end.

Phillips Exeter will play a demanding schedule, in part because Tilton doesn’t want them to travel far often in part because of academic considerations. They will play a number of “up” games against Class AAA and AA schools, so the players will get the chance to play their way into a college scholarship if they haven’t already done so.

It’s not really new since the school used to compete in the old Class A (now AAA), but it’s worked well over the years and Tilton doesn’t see a need to change it. This time around, his team should be even more competitive than usual and might win a game or two they probably shouldn’t.

Comment on this Article:







Avery Bradley Skills Academy

August 11-13, 2014 at the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center.

More information is available by clicking here.

Coaching Changes and NBA Draft Early Entrants

The coaching carousel is moving. Keep track of the latest coaching changes right here on Hoopville.

Also, keep track of players who have declared early for the NBA Draft.

Advertisement


Your Phil of Hoops

Watson’s transfer will sting BU the most

April 11, 2014 by

bostonuniversity

Boston University recently saw three players transfer. The impact of the departure of one of them will be felt more than the other two.

Mihalich’s first year at Hofstra is over but will have plenty of value

March 9, 2014 by

hofstra

The first year for Hofstra under Joe Mihalich is in the books. Many expected that wins would be hard to come by, and they were, but this season was about more than that and is hardly a throwaway year.

Cornell’s future can only be better

March 2, 2014 by

cornell

Cornell has had a rough season, as could be expected given some personnel losses. It’s almost in the books, and the future at least looks brighter.

Hoopville Archives

We cannot load blog data at this time.

Conference Coverage

2013-14 Big Ten Post-Mortem

July 8, 2014 by

bigten

The Big Ten had some teams slip as the season went on, but plenty of others picked up the slack in another good year for the conference.

2013-14 Sun Belt Post-Mortem

July 7, 2014 by

sunbelt

Membership changes have been happening at quite a pace of late in the Sun Belt, and it was a new member that stole the show for much of this past season and seems poised to lead the way in the future.

2013-14 Big Sky Post-Mortem

July 1, 2014 by

bigsky

The teams that have led the way in the Big Sky of late were right there again this season. One of them won both the regular season and conference tournament, and also had a nice time with the post-season awards as well.

2013-14 MEAC Post-Mortem

July 1, 2014 by

meac

The 2013-14 season was N.C. Central’s year in the MEAC, as the Eagles completed their four-year ascent to the top of conference.

2013-14 Big 12 Post-Mortem

June 30, 2014 by

big12

When it comes to overall depth, the Big 12 this season may have been one of the strongest leagues in a long time. The conference sent seven of its 10 teams to the NCAA Tournament, the first time in 21 years and just the fifth time ever that a league sent 70% or more of its teams to the tourney.

Phil Kasiecki on Twitter