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Top AAU basketball players, teams coming to Eagan

By Jason Gonzalez, Star Tribune, 05/23/13, 7:54PM CDT


The Nike Elite Youth Basketball League, which has earned a reputation as the nation’s best AAU circuit, is coming to Eagan this weekend

Reid Travis (left) set a screen while Tyus Jones (dribbled) during practice for the Howard Pulley AAU basketball team at High Performance Academy in Eagan

The Nike Elite Youth Basketball League, which has earned a reputation as the nation’s best AAU circuit, is coming to Eagan this weekend. One hundred games will be played, featuring eight of the top-10 ranked juniors and 45 of the top 50. Even some top-rated sophomores and freshmen can be spotted. The players include local standouts Tyus Jones (Apple Valley), Rashad Vaughn (Cooper), and Reid Travis (DeLaSalle).

Nike Elite Youth Basketball League

–9 p.m.; Saturday, 9:30 a.m.–8 p.m.; Sunday, 8 a.m.–5 p.m.; Monday, 9–10:30 a.m.

Where: High Performance Academy, 2950 Lexington Av., Eagan

Courts in use: Five

Cost: Adults $10/day, students/seniors $5

top juniors on display, as rated by ESPN

1: Jahlil Okafor, Mac Irvin Fire (Chicago)

2: Tyus Jones, Howard Pulley (Minneapolis)

3: Emmanuel Mudiay, Texas Pro (Houston)

4: Trey Lyles, Spiece Indy Heat (Fort Wayne, Ind.)

6: *Chris McCullough, Team Scan (New York)

8: Cliff Alexander, Mac Irvin Fire (Chicago)

9: Rashad Vaughn, Wisconsin Playground Elite (Milwaukee)

10: Justise Winslow, Houston Hoops

* committed to Syracuse

Local connections

Howard Pulley, which includes Jones, Travis and Jarvis Johnson of DeLaSalle, is tied for second place in Division D. Games this weekend include:

Saturday: 9 a.m. vs. ICP Elite; 3:30 p.m. vs. Basketball Travelers

Sunday: 8 a.m. vs. Seattle Rotary; 2 p.m. vs. Team United

Monday: 10:30 a.m. vs. All Ohio Red

one more playing next door

Playground Elite, a Milwaukee team that includes Vaughn, is tied for fifth place in Division B. Weekend games include:

Friday: 7:30 p.m. vs. Team Texas Elite

Saturday: 12:30 p.m. vs. Georgia Stars; 6:30 p.m. vs. Team Penny

Sunday: 11 a.m. vs. CP3; 5 p.m. vs. NJ Playaz

‘Big Three’ on the circuit

Vaughn: “You can’t take any breaks. You don’t get any off games [in this league].”

Travis: “When you get out on the circuit, everyone is fighting for wins. It opened my eyes to what’s out there around the country.”

Jones: “Any win you can get on the circuit is a big win.”

How they stack up

Jones: Leads league in points (301, 23.2 points per game), assists (89, 6.8 apg), steals (39, 3 spg) and minutes (400, 30.8 avg). Second in baskets made (100, 7.7 avg.). Fourth in free-throw percentage (81-for-91, 89 percent). Fifth in free-throw attempts (91, 7 avg.)

Vaughn: Fourth in points (249, 19.3 ppg), second in field-goal attempts (210, 16.2 avg.), fifth in baskets made (89, 6.8 avg.), fifth in free throws made (48, 3.7 avg.), fourth in minutes (376, 28.9 avg.)

Travis: Eleventh in points (227, 17.5 ppg), fourth in free-throw attempts (94, 7.2 avg.). Has 106 rebounds (8.2 rpg)

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