Recruiting Central: Big Five schools make a pitch for prince of hoops

Vaux's Rysheed Jordan has become a Philly playground legend for his dazzling skills.
Vaux's Rysheed Jordan has become a Philly playground legend for his dazzling skills. (STEVEN M. FALK / Staff Photographer)
Posted: June 29, 2011

Rysheed Jordan is nicknamed the Prince of North Philly - for now.

If all goes well, some think the Robert Vaux High combination guard will one day be recognized as the Prince of the Big Five - if any of those schools can lure the prospect from 27th and Cecil B. Moore Avenue.

"Man, we haven't had a player like him in a while from Philly," said Kamal Yard, Jordan's AAU coach. "One of the things that makes him unique is his following. He has what you call a 'hood pass.

"He can go into any neighborhood and feel at home, because of his game. That's why he's called the Prince of North Philly."

Jordan, who will be a junior, stands 6-foot-3 and is regarded as Pennsylvania's fourth-best college prospect in the Class of 2013, according to ESPN.com. The Hoop Scoop recruiting service ranks him as the second-best junior behind Chester's Rondae Jefferson in the Eastern Pennsylvania/South Jersey region.

A lot of that has to do with Jordan's length and ability to play above the rim. He's also a highlight clip in waiting.

"I think with Rysheed's game, he can get to the basket with the best of them," Vaux coach Jamie Ross said. "I really haven't seen anybody stop him from going to the basket."

So far, Jordan has scholarship offers from Temple, St. Joseph's, La Salle, Drexel and Rutgers. Pittsburgh plans to make an offer and Villanova wants him to make an unofficial visit. Arizona, Xavier and North Carolina State are also expressing a lot of interest.

"Colleges are blowing my phone up, trying to find out where he is going to be this summer," Yard said. "They want to know what his schedule is like.

"I guarantee you by July 31, he will have his share of offers from some of the top teams in the top conferences in the country."

For now, Jordan doesn't have a top-five list of schools. And he's unsure about how he received his nickname.

"I don't know, man," Jordan said. "I just started killing people and they gave me that nickname. I took over North Philly."

Yard wouldn't be surprised if Jordan takes over in college.

"I think his upside is tremendous," the coach said. "He has big-time talent. And he's a very likable kid that people gravitate to."

Nittany Lions hit the trail

Penn State football is way ahead of last year's recruiting pace.

At the end of last July, the Nittany Lions had only four oral commitments for their recruiting Class of 2011. The Lions ended up with 16 commitments.

This summer, the Nittany Lions already have 10 oral commitments for their 2012 recruiting class.

Jarron "Too Tall" Jones is the headliner of this class.

The 6-7, 303-pound defensive tackle at Aquinas Institute of Rochester, N.Y., is regarded as the 67th-best player in the Class of 2012, according to Rivals.com. He is ranked 97th by ESPNU.

Pennsbury offensive tackle J.J. Denman, Gilman School (Md.) guard Brian Gaia, and Catholic Memorial (Mass.) outside linebacker Camren Williams are Penn State's other prize recruits.

Interest in Malvern star

Brendan Kilpatrick, a 6-4 guard at Malvern Prep, has basketball scholarship offers from James Madison, Rider, Holy Cross, Maine, Boston University, Vermont, New Hampshire, and Fairfield.

The Inter-Ac League player of the year as a junior, he is also receiving interest from Notre Dame, Virginia, Elon, and Penn State. Kilpatrick doesn't have a top-five list and will wait until the end of the summer before picking a school.


Contact staff writer Keith Pompey at 215-854-2939, kpompey@phillynews.com, or @pompeysgridlock on Twitter. Read his blog "Owls Inq" at www.philly.com/owlsinq

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