Notre Dame Prep Profile | Wednesday, October 4th, 2006

Notre Dame Prep Profile

Notre Dame Prep Head Coach Bill Barton likes his team to play a certain way. He wants to push the tempo, take the first good shot available, and play at least ten players every game. In order to play at such a fast pace for the entire game it is imperative for a coach to have good depth and athletic players, and Coach Barton has exactly that.

In order for Notre Dame to push the ball up the court as quickly as possible, they will play two point guards together at all times. 6’2 ½ senior Deonte Roberts and 6’0 senior Johnny Higgins will likely get the first shot at those spots. Roberts who has committed to Wisconsin-Milwaukee can get into the lane and create almost at will. Higgins is an extremely tough and solid guard who is a definite mid-major prospect. Coming off the bench is 6’0 post-graduate Sean Crawford who comes by way of Cardozo High School in New York, 6’1 senior Matt Garth who has already committed to Dusquesne, and 5’11 spark plug Anthony Gill.

In addition to playing with two point-guards Notre Dame will also play with four perimeter players at all times. 6’3 junior Thomas Manzano and 6’8 post-graduate Damian Saunders could be the two leading candidates to start on either wing. Manzano, who is the only player on the roster already planning to return for next season, is a naturally gifted athlete who has a chance to be recruited at a very high level. Saunders, who names Providence and Marquette as his top two college choices, is a player who is already clearly benefiting by being in Fitchburg with a much improved body and outside jump shot.

If Saunders and Manzano get the nod at the wing spots than that would leave 6’5 senior Jamine Peterson to come off the bench as the sixth man, and if that comes to fruition he may be the most talented sixth man in New England. Peterson can overpower almost any opposing defender to get to the basket and is receiving interest from schools in the Atlantic 10, Big East, and ACC. Also coming off the bench would be sharp shooting Sedale Jones, a 6’4 senior originally from Pittsfield, Massachusetts. 6’4 post-graduate Marvin Billups and 6’3 post-graduate Corey Orgias will provide quality depth at the wing spots.

Rounding out the starting lineup will almost undoubtedly be 6’8 senior forward Michael Beasley (pictured) who is the nation’s #1 ranked player in the class of 2007 according to The Kansas State committee is incredibly talented and has very few limitations on a basketball court. If he stays focused he should be dominant for Notre Dame this season.

When Coach Barton needs to add some additional rebounding or shot blocking to his lineup he has two great options in 6’11 senior center Sean Williams and 7’1 senior center Riiny Ngot. Williams, who has already committed to Syracuse, and Ngot, who has already committed to Stony Brook, can both have an immediate impact on the game due to their presence on the defensive end of the floor.

With so many talented and athletic players Notre Dame Prep should be a very entertaining team to watch this year as they fast-break their way through the season.