Category: PLAYER INTERVIEWS

Q&A with 2020 Cory Davila

Cory Davila has had a very productive season for his Basehor-Linwood team in his final season for the program. Davila has averaged 11 ppg while bringing in 7 rpg and dishing out 3 apg. Davila has been very efficient for the Bobcats scoring on 79% of his field goal attempts. Davila has improved mightily from last season and even this fall when I saw him before the season. A big man with incredible footwork who can run the floor and rebounds outside his area, Davila will be a huge steal for any program looking to add him. I was able to catch up with the senior to discuss his improvement, the season, and the mentality heading into this run towards a state championship. 

RLH: How has the season been going for you at Basehor-Linwood?

It has been a very eventful and emotional season. 

RLH: You guys are currently 17-2 overall and undefeated in league play (please correct me if I’m wrong–used MaxPreps). How are you guys handling the pressure of being a top team in the state? 

We have been the top team for a while and we know that teams are coming to get us. We know that we have the talent and skill to keep being the top team. We just can’t relax. Respect every team and just play our game. 

RLH: You’re one of your teams go-to scorers when they need a bucket and have incredible footwork for your age, is that something you have a great deal of confidence in?

I’m especially confident in my footwork and post moves. I know that very little can guard me. I just really enjoyed learning how to beat someone with honestly easy moves. Just had to perfect them. 

RLH: You’re one of the best big men in your class in the state of Kansas, what’s your case for why you think you should be #1?

Why I should be #1, I think as a whole the #1 big man should be best at running the floor, foot work, defensive impact, and mentality. And I think I have all those qualities. 

RLH: If a college coach asked what are the strong parts of your game? What would you say?

Like I answered before, running the floor, foot work, defensive impact, and mentality. But also my attitude. I’m a level-headed kid, I am not going to start a fight, not going to argue with a ref or coach. I know that my mentality is everything in this game. 

RLH: What are you doing to improve as a basketball player?

I am currently working on ball handling skills and stretching my game outside the paint. Trying to gain confidence in the high post and highkey as well as the wings. 

RLH: You guys are hitting the final stretch of your HS season before substate and state rolls around, what’s the message and mentality you guys have heading into this crucial stretch?

Our message is that we have to just go get it, take it, We have the pieces to win it all and that’s what we have to do. 

RLH: Are there any updates on your college recruitment? What schools are contacting you the most? Any offers?

My college recruitment is still open. Many schools have contacted me, Mid-America Of Nazarene is strongly pursuing me. As well as Nebraska Concordia. I’m waiting till after the season to analyze my options and go on visits. No confirmed offers have been given to me.

Q and A with 2021 PG Jaden Monday

Jaden Monday is an electric point guard with an all-around game. The 2021 point guard has led his Van Horn team to a 15-10 record, much improved from last year, while also leading the team in scoring at 25 PPG adding 5 APG and 4 RPG. Monday recently eclipsed the career 1000 point mark in his junior season. Monday is one of the better point guard prospects in the Kansas City metro with big goals heading down the final stretch of their season. We were able to catch up with Jaden for a quick Q&A to see how his season has been going and his mindset heading into districts. 

RLH: How has the season been going for you at Van Horn?

It’s been a fun season, I’m excited for these district games.

RLH: You guys are currently 15-10 overall and 8-1 in league play. How are you guys handling the pressure of being a top team in your conference?

I feel like as a team we hold ourselves to the standard of a great team so it’s more so pressure from ourselves to be great

RLH: You’re leading the team in scoring. How are you handling the defenses knowing that you’re the go-to guy on offense?

Knowing that teams want to keep me under control I try to use it to the teams advantage. Making sure that everyone is active off the ball since more times than not, eyes are on me.

RLH: You’re a top 5 player in the state in your class. What is your case on why you should be #1?

I feel like there are a lot of great players in my area and in my class, but what separates my game from anyone elses is how I can not only find my own shot, but I can also make the game easier for my teammates. I’ve been doing it at a high level all game and season. 

RLH: You guys have had an incredible year this year, and improved from last year, why do you think that is?

Just competing with great teams in season and in the summer has prepared us to play at a high level. Having the mindset we can beat anyone any given game. I feel like that has put us over the edge these last two years.

RLH: Districts are fastly approaching, what’s the mentality for you guys heading into districts and what’s the message coach has been conveying to you guys?

Preparing for districts has been huge for us from the last two games. In practice we’ve been focusing on our weaknesses, coaches have just been reminding us we can’t settle, we’re the underdog, and we have to play with that chip no matter what.

RLH: If a college coach asked what are the strong parts of your game? 

What would you say?

I feel like the stronger parts of my game are the ways I can impact the game as a playmaker. As well as someone who can guard the other team’s best player while not losing a beat on the other side of the court the whole game. Also just the grit and want to win above all.

RLH: What are you doing to improve as a basketball player?

Playing basketball everyday trying to turn weaknesses into strengths, watching film and dissecting my decisions on the court, and trying to improve on them. Just going hard in everything I do from weights, to practice, to shoot around.

RLH: Are there any updates on your college recruitment? What schools are contacting you the most? Any offers?

I’ve been in contact with a couple MIAA colleges. No offers yet, but interest continues to grow as we win and become an elite team.

Q&A with 2021 Joe Berry

Joe Berry is a 6’2″ guard in the class of 2021 with a cumulative GPA is 4.4. He’s averaging 17.7 points, 6.4 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 2.6 steals per game, and shooting 57% FG and 39% 3-FG.

We caught up with Joe discuss his season and recruitment.

RLH: How has the season been going for you at Washburn Rural HS?

JB: The season has been going very well for us so far. We are tied for first in the Centennial League (Class 6A) with only two games left. We have a very young team, but we have been getting better all season and we are playing our best basketball right now. 

RLH: You guys are currently 13-4 overall. How are you guys handling the pressure of being a top team in the state? 

JB: Even though we are young and there were only a few that got any playing time last year, we have players who were in the program and experienced what we are trying to do now. Last year we took second at state and our record was 23-2. We have handled the pressure of being a top team well by coming out every game with the expectation to win.

RLH: You’re a top option on a solid team. How are you handling the defenses knowing that you’re the go-to guy on offense?

JB: I have seen defenses this year that are specifically designed to stop me. I know that when teams do this, my teammates will be open and I can get them the ball. Coach prepares us for defenses that will be more focused on me. No matter what the defense throws at me, I know that I have to do whatever it takes to help the team win. 

RLH: You’re a top 3 player in the state in your class. What is your case on why you should be #1?

JB: Two years ago I was ranked 19th in the state. I moved up last year to the 8th spot and now I am number three. Hopefully I will continue to move up and reach the number one spot. I think I should be #1 because I have led my team to a 37-6 record in the past two years in 6A. 

RLH: If a college coach asked what are the strong parts of your game? What would you say?

JB: One strong part of my game is my ability to get to the rim and finish. I have a quick first step that has helped me get past defenders. Another part of my game that is strong is my deep range from three. I stay in front of my man and shut down their best player. 

RLH: What are you doing to improve as a basketball player?

JB: I am working on my shot constantly, trying to perfect it. Watching game film has raised my basketball IQ to another level. Lifting every day has helped me to be a more physical player and hard work has helped me reach my goals. 

RLH: Are there any updates on your college recruitment? What schools are contacting you the most? Any offers?

JB: As of right now, I do not have any offers, however, over 15 coaches are in contact with me. I have taken 3 unofficial visits to the University of Chicago, the University of Nebraska at Omaha, and Emporia St. I’m hearing from schools in the IVY League, West Coast Conference, Missouri Valley, Mountain West, Patriot League and Summit League.

Q&A with Boston Stanton

Boston Stanton III is a 2021 combo guard/forward listed at 6’4″. The athletic wing-type does a little bit of everything for his 19-2 high school team. He’s currently averaging: 22ppg, 6.1rpg, 2.9apg, 50% FG, 39% 3-PT%. And he has a 3.9 GPA!

We caught up with Boston to talk about his season and recruitment.

RLH: How has the season been going for you at Denver East HS?
BS: The season has been good so far, but we believe we should be doing a bit better than we are right now. But on the bright side, the games we lost served as a wake up call that we needed to get focused and push through the end of the season stronger, instead of getting too happy when we win. There’s always more work to do! 

RLH: You guys are currently 19-2 overall and 7-0 in league play. How are you guys handling the pressure of being a top team in the state? 
BS: I think we’re handling the pressure of being a top team in the state pretty well, especially for such a young team. We’re growing as a team, and as we face more veteran teams, we’re figuring out ways to rise to the occasion. But honestly, it isn’t much pressure for us. We just like to go out, and have fun playing the game we love.  

RLH: You’re leading the team in scoring with 22ppg. How are you handling the defenses knowing that you’re the go-to guy on offense?
BS: I’m learning as the season goes on that when I’m being keyed in on by other teams, forcing up shots isn’t going to help me or my team. Knowing that, when defenses come out and try and throw me off my game early, I start by facilitating more, and then letting my shots come to me in the flow of the game. A focus for me is that when defenses are shutting me down, I make up for that in another area of my game, whether that’s defense, rebounds, or assists.

RLH: You’re a top 5 player in the state in your class. What is your case on why you should be #1?
BS: I try not to get too caught up in Colorado rankings, nor will I limit myself to Colorado competition. I make my competition the ones that are top in the nation, not just in Colorado. As far as people in Colorado, I believe I should be number one because I’m the best basketball player in the state. I also believe I put more work in, and I’m constantly evolving my game to take any potential weaknesses out.

RLH: If a college coach asked what are the strong parts of your game? What would you say?
BS: I would say that I am very fundamentally sound, and can score from all three levels. I also believe that this year my defense and rebounding has come a long way from where it has been in the past. I also believe that I have a high basketball IQ.

RLH: What are you doing to improve as a basketball player?
BS: I work on my skill set every day, as well as watch film to understand what I can do better in game-time situations. Also, to improve the physical side of my game, I do push-ups, sit-ups, and calf raises every night before I go to bed. 

RLH: Are there any updates on your college recruitment? What schools are contacting you the most? Any offers?
BS: There are many schools interested in me, however I only have one offer at this time. 

Q&A with Taeshaud Jackson

Taeshaud Jackson Jr is a 6-5 point-forward in the 2021 class. He’s an explosive player that is just outright dominating at times, and we caught up with him to talk a little about his season and recruiting.

RLH: How has the season been going for you at Dakota Ridge HS?

TJ: The season has been eventful this year. My team and I started off slow and rough losing games. However, we’ve banded together to figure things out and have started gaining wins.

RLH: You’re averaging a double-double in points and rebounds while chipping in 4apg. How are you handling teams game planning to stop you?

TJ: I honestly watch a ton of film, to study how my opponents play. The different defensive styles my opponents will present, and then figuring out spots on the floor I can score from. A lot of my assists comes from when a team is collapsing on me and I’m able to find my open teammates. My teammates are doing a great job knocking down the shots.

RLH: You’re a top 5 player in the state in your class. What is your case on why you should be #1? 

TJ: I can vouch for myself saying I work the hardest in my class to be in the number one spot. But I can also say that my peers have more experience than me, playing basketball longer. But I don’t really worry about the rankings, whenever I’m playing or will play one of the top players above me I’ll show them I can play with them or I deserve their spot. 

RLH: If a college coach asked what are the strong parts of your game? What would you say?

TJ: I would tell them that I can play defense. I really take pride in my defense, slowing my opponent down and not allowing them to get easy buckets. I would also mention how I can create scoring chances for my teammates by reading the defense and seeing the floor.

RLH: What are you doing to improve as a basketball player?

TJ: Making sure I get my workout in daily and setting goals for myself to work on everyday. However, since I’m in season, I make sure I get my shots up and make sure my handle is tight. Offseason is really where I enhance my game…developing new moves and figuring out my different abilities. 

RLH: What has been your favorite part of the season thus far?

TJ: My favorite part of the season has been the process and the grind overall. Figuring out different tactics and trying new things in practice that’ll help us win more games.

RLH: Are there any updates on your college recruitment? What schools are contacting you the most?

TJ: Lately I been in touch with Colorado State University, Air Force, and University of Northern Colorado. All three schools have been in contact with me.