Eight area players looking to catch the eyes of pro scouts will be playing in Saturday's Black College All-Star Classic at 1 p.m. at the Baltimore Arena.
Antoine Brockington and Danny Singletary of Coppin State are featured in the men's game, which follows the women's game at around 3 p.m. Joining the Coppin pair will be Tremain Byrd, Lorenzo Hutchinson and Jerard Rucker of Morgan State.
In the women's game, Tressan Dugan of Morgan State, Vanessa Valez of UMES and Brenonda Jackson of Bowie State will play.
Saturday will mark the third year for the event, seen as an opportunity for unknowns from the Mid-Eastern, Southwestern, Central Intercollegiate and Southern Intercollegiate conferences to display their talents in front of scouts from the NBA, WNBA, ABL and other professional leagues.
The NBA did not invite Byrd to either of its camps, and unlike Brockington, Byrd didn't receive an invitation to the Portsmouth Invitational earlier this month.
So while Brockington may look to this game as possible redemption after a spotty performance at Portsmouth, for Byrd -- who averaged 25 points in his last 10 games -- this is the one and perhaps only shot to show potential to scouts.
"I hope to showcase the little talent that I have," said Byrd, who speculated that a slow start last season might have hindered his professional hopes. "For the first half of the season, I was inconsistent. Toward the end, I began to get quality minutes. Once we [Chris Fuller and Byrd] came to the agreement that I should play more, I produced good numbers."
On the women's side, K.C. Jones, coach of the ABL's New England Blizzard and the South team in Saturday's game, said he will look for players he thinks can perform in his league.
"They're guards, centers and forwards," said Jones, who will oppose Walbrook product Cozette Ballentine on the North bench. "There's a chance for someone who stands out, who plays well."
More than anything however, the game is a celebration of basketball in historically black colleges and universities. Despite producing some figures such as NBA Hall of Famers Sam Jones and Earl Monroe (scheduled to coach the South men), teams in the MEAC, SWAC, CIAA and SIAC are often overlooked.
"What this is doing is giving them some recognition," said Jimmy Jones, coach of the North men.
Pub Date: 4/16/98