Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Top recruit to visit B-ball Madness

Charlotte is getting an unexpected guest at Thursday's "Basketball Madness" event at Halton Arena.

Karron Johnson, a 6-foot-7, 210-pound forward who attends Mount Zion Christian Academy in Durham and currently ranked sixth overall in the Class of 2009 by recruiting Web site rivals.com, plans to make an unofficial visit to Charlotte on Thursday, his AAU coach confirmed Tuesday night.

Johnson, who has already received offers from Virginia, Memphis and Louisiana State, is rated the No. 1 small forward among high school juniors.

Johnson, 17, hails from Richmond, Va., and has played for the Squires Richmond AAU team and coach Tony Squire since he was 13. Charlotte assistant basketball coach Chris Cheeks, a former star at Virginia Commonwealth, is friends with Squire.

"I told Karron he needs to keep his options wide open," Squire said. "I told him to go out and take a look at teams and coaches and their styles and think about what he likes and what would work for him."

Squire said his relationship with Cheeks is part of the reason he thinks the visit to Charlotte would be a smart one for Johnson.

"I've known Chris since he was up here playing at VCU. You know, for the most part, a lot of these kids don't know much about these schools when you get down to it," Squire said. "Having someone who is from the area certainly makes it easier to make a connection."

But could a player of Johnson's stature really come to Charlotte?

"Of course." Squire said. "Stranger things have happened."

Squire said Cheeks, then an assistant at West Virginia, lured away another one of Squire's players, Jonathan Hargett, in 2002.

The Richmond Squires have a long history of talented players, including Ray Allen, Kevin Garnett, Amare Stoudemire, Marco Killingsworth, among others.

Johnson had hoped to attend Georgetown's "Midnight Madness" basketball event last week, but was unable to make travel arrangements in time, Squire said.

"I know he has practice starting up this week at Mount Zion, but when we spoke today he was still planning to make the 2 1/2 drive down on Thursday," he said.


Anonymous said...

If he did commit, Huggy Bear would try and hire Cheeks away !

Anonymous said...

Well, I hope he is impressed with his future teammates :)

He would make a great addition to the program!

Anonymous said...

We have had some great Johnsons play at Charlotte. We NEED one more. Half the student section should chant "KARRON" tonight and the otehr half should chant "JOHNSON"...all night long!

Unknown said...

"Johnsons play at Charlotte."

butter doesn't count does he?