Southern Invitational Returns To Charlottesville

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Every year, the Southern Invitational includes several recruiting targets for UVa, including Mike Scott and Sean Singletary in the past.

The last day of exams at the University of Virginia frequently has marked the start to a great weekend of basketball for many of the state’s and East Coast’s most talented AAU programs. This weekend’s Southern Invitational once again takes place at UVa, and the 2008 edition looks to be just as strong as previous years. Often featuring top recruiting targets, the weekend event has featured the likes of Sean Singletary , Patrick Patterson, Mike Scott, J.J. Redick, Mustafa Shakur, Carmelo Anthony, and J.R. Reynolds in the past.

Basketball recruiting analyst Bob Gibbons along with the Hoop Group’s Rob Kennedy use this weekend each year as an opportunity to showcase many of the great AAU programs on the East Coast while also introducing University of Virginia fans to some of the top recruiting targets from around the nation.

The state of Virginia alone is going to feature some of the best rising talent of any state in the country in the coming years. While recent Boo Williams teams have featured very talented and deep rosters, perhaps the best of them all has yet to arrive. This year’s Boo Williams’ 15-year-old class is without a doubt the deepest of any team his program has ever brought to Charlottesville.

Boo Williams’ guru Kenny Chisholm knows the plethora of talent featured within the 15-year-old division is impressive.

“Without a doubt, the must see guy of the ‘High Five’ is 6-6 Travis McKie of John Marshall. He is currently bringing it on both ends of the court, but his jump shot and athleticism are really starting to shine. We have him playing up with the 16s this year, but his class will be second to none once it is all said and done,” Chisholm said. “Travis can light it up once he gets in his groove.”

When asked about other players to watch, Chisholm pointed to four other members of the ‘High Five’ on the Boo Williams’ 15U AAU team as: James McAdoo (Norfolk Christian), Justin Anderson (8th Grade), Trey Davis (Henrico), and Levon Harper (Fuqua School). Chisholm notes that Virginia is recruiting all five of the prospects.

When asked how important this event is to UVa, Chisholm noted that it is perhaps the best way to have kids be introduced to a school. Chisholm feels that kids will develop a comfort level with the school being around it early in their careers and that the Southern Invitational is an event that Virginia fans should see as a privilege, not a right.

“I would imagine a lot of schools would love to get a free weekend with these kids in the early stages of their high school careers,” Chisholm said. “Having this event in Charlottesville at the University of Virginia has to be a great thing for their program.”

The Southern Invitational kicks off Friday night with lots of high quality basketball at UVa and several other locations throughout the Charlottesville area. The event is a prime opportunity for basketball fans to watch high profile players as they develop toward future careers; the tournament is also good for the Charlottesville community due to the number of people it brings to the area. The Southern Invitational also provides The Sabre with an opportunity to view top recruits up close and provide coverage and analysis on the players. is supporting a ticket drive to the event with a goal of selling anywhere from 500 to 1,000 tickets. Here is the link to the sale of tickets to support the event. Even if you cannot attend, your presence will be felt by purchasing tickets. Weekend tickets are $15 and day passes are as low as $10.

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