Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Preseason Team to Watch: Duncanville (Texas)

We are now less than one month away from the start of high school basketball season in some parts of the country. Naturally, that means in less than a month the first National Prep Basketball Poll of the season will be released.

Over the last several weeks, Basketball Contributor Jeremy Plowman and I have been analyzing top teams and players, and collecting information from high school coaches across the country.

Today, we begin giving readers a sneak peak at the preseason rankings with the first of several "Team to Watch" capsules.

Duncanville (Duncanville, Texas)
Coach: Phil McNeely (675-163, 24 years at Duncanville)
2007-08 record: 35-2 (lost in 5A region finals), No. 16 in final National Prep Poll
Top players: G/F Shawn Williams, Sr. (6-7, 17 pts, 9 reb.); F Roger Franklin, Sr. (6-5, 14 pts, 8 reb.); F Julian Washburn, Jr. (6-7, 9 pts, 6 reb.); PG Reger Dowell, Sr. (6-1), C/F Perry Jones, Jr. (transfer from Dallas Wilson)
Team strength: Size, shooting, defense
Question mark: Experience with three new starters
Outlook: The Panthers, who lost only to Top 15 teams last season, feature a blend of experience and highly talented newcomers. All five projected Duncanville starters are high Division I college prospects. Williams (a Texas commit) and Franklin (OKlahoma St.) have been mainstays since cracking the starting lineup in their freshman seasons. Dowell (formerly committed to both Alabama and Arizona) has good quickness and handles the ball well. Washburn and Jones are both committed to Baylor and ranked among the Top 10 juniors in Texas. Duncanville will play a schedule that, if successful, should certainly put it in position for a high national ranking. The Panthers will play stand-alone games versus national powers St. Bendict's (N.J.), Brooklyn (N.Y.) Lincoln, and LeFlore (Ala.) in addition to playing in the City of Palms Classic and T-Mobile National High School Federation tournaments.

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