Championship Mentality

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The latest USA Today Super Prep national high school basketball rankings came out today featuring #2 Long Beach Poly led by USC signee PG Alexis Moore and #12 Etiwanda starring incoming Trojan SF Byron Wesley (highlight reel below).

Alexis-Moore.jpgPoly and Etiwanda are known as solid basketball programs, but Moore (right) and Wesley have helped lift their teams to new heights, which is an attractive quality in a college recruit.

"You always want to recruit kids from winning programs," said recruiting coordinator Bob Cantu.  "Fortunately, the two guys that we are bringing in next year are coming from very successful high school programs."

USC head coach Kevin O'Neill talks openly about the bad habits that young basketball players develop at the high school level when they are often not pushed to defend hard or share the basketball, but student-athletes from elite basketball institutions come into college with a leg up.

"With good high school programs comes good coaching, good teaching," Cantu said.  "At Etiwanda and Long Beach Poly, they defend and they are very good offensively, so they come here with a little bit of an advantage."

While recruiting is always an inexact science, Wesley and Moore play against the state's (and at times the nation's) best competition, so they are pushed to improve every game.

"It's exciting to see that the guys we signed are leading their teams at a high level," said Cantu.  "It will be easier for them to make that transition to USC next year."

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