Alan Dell

Southeast’s Smalls getting attention, scholarships

Southeast High senior Reggie Smalls is making a name for himself on the summer basketball circuit. The combo guard recently put together a 30 point game for the SWFL Select basketball team in the highly touted Big Shot AAU tournament in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

The performance earned him an on the spot scholarship offer from Lynn University, a Division II school in Boca Raton.

With his huge vertical, strength and quickness, Smalls plays a lot bigger than his 5-foot-11 frame, and he showed a much improved outside shot knocking down seven 3-pointers in the tournament title game. His AAU coach believes there will be a lot more scholarships coming his way.

“It’s very unusual for a player to get an offer this early from a Division II school, but Reggie impressed them,” Select head coach Ryan Bowen said. “I didn’t know he was so good on defensive. He is an excellent on ball defender. Division I schools are not allowed to contact him right now unless he initiates it, but he has been seen by about 50 to 100 scouts.”

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Former Manatee High receiver Ricky Simmons is a guy, who just won’t give up the game. Now 25, the 6-foot-2, 200-pound Simmons has caught four touchdown passes for the Rostock Griffins of the German Football League. During his final season at Manatee in 2002, Simmons led the Canes with 31 receptions for 423 yards (13.6 average). He played his college ball at IUP (Indiana University in Pennsylvania) and was out of football for a few years before catching on in Germany. Rostock is in Northern Germany right on the Baltic Sea coastline.

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It took Jon Griffin about half the season to find his home run stroke for UCF, but once he got it there was no stopping him.

The Lakewood Ranch High product is tearing it up this summer in the prestigious Valley League, which brings some of the top college players together.

After 98 at-bats, the first baseman leads the Luray (Va.) Wranglers in homers (five), RBIs (16), extra base hits (13) and slugging percentage (.561). He is also displaying the power that he showed when he was at Manatee Community College (22 home runs in ’08).

Griffin hit only two homers in UCF’s first 19 games last season, but smacked eight in his last 23 games to finish with 13.

Heading into his senior year at UCF, the 6-foot-7, 230 pounder has no regrets about passing up previous opportunities to accept a pro contract. He has proven to be an adept fielder at first and could earn a big contract next spring.

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Southeast quarterback Dyron Speight recently picked up his second offer when Western Kentucky’s Raymond Woodie extended one to go with a scholarship offer he has from Kent State. His teammate Terran Williams has been offered scholarships by WKU, Iowa State and Bowling Green.

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Andrew Borman, Director of Basketball Operations at IMG, has some incredible notches in his family tree. His grandfather is astronaut Frank Borman, who was commander of the first mission to orbit the moon, his uncle is Duke head coach Mike Krzyzewski and his father, Fred, was an All-State offensive lineman in Texas who received a scholarship to West Point.

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Southeast grad Julius Wilson, who had been hoping to hook up with the Orlando Rush of the United Football League, recently signed with the Orlando Predators of the Arena Football League 1. He will go both ways on the line. Also on the team is former USF/Sarasota Booker High grad Glenn Gauntt.

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In three NBA Summer League games out of Las Vegas, former USF star Dominque Jones is averaging 12.7 points and 34 minutes a game, which is the most playing time for anyone on the Dallas Mavericks. Second year guard Rodrigue Beaubois, who Jones could be battling for court time during the regular season, is averaging 18.3 points and 32 minutes a game.