Conversation With Prince Ibeh's High School Coach

Trusted reader and Turtle Soup recruiting guru, DBR had an opportunity to speak with Naaman Forest High School Men's Basketball Coach, Jeff Clarkson, about his star player, Prince Ibeh.  Below, in DBR's own words, is a summary of the conversation:


Bigs have been on the minds of Terp Nation as new head coach Mark Turgeon looks to reload the program and Prince Ibeh (pronounced E-bay) is a prospect of great interest. In the past two years he’s grown from a 6-foot 5 ninth grader that could barely make a layup into a 6-foot 10 ½ center with a 7-4 wingspan that owns the paint in his high school league.

Turtle Soup caught up with Jeff Clarkson, head coach at Naaman Forest High School (TX) to discuss the 2012 big man and get an update on his recruitment.

“He’s got great instincts for shot blocking. He has GREAT timing.  And he changes more shots than he blocks.  He changes the game when he’s in there.  Offensively is where he needs the most work”.

Ibeh’s growth and improvement has definitely been noticed by high major programs nationwide.  He sports offers from Maryland, Texas, Texas A&M, Baylor, Vanderbilt, Florida State, Virginia to name a few.  And just Saturday, Duke called Clarkson to express interest.

Recently Ibeh visited College Park and according to Clarkson the trip left a big impression on him.  “He really liked it.  He liked the coaches when he was at (Texas) A&M but his lead A&M recruiter didn’t go with Turgeon to Maryland.  Prince knew their interest level and was still interested in Maryland because of coach Turgeon. Maryland hasn’t been in the spotlight lately so kids in Texas aren’t up on the history of Maryland basketball.”  

While many feel that Ibeh is unlikely to leave Texas to attend college Coach Clarkson says not necessarily.  “There’s a part of him that would like to stay in Texas.  He’s pretty close to his family, but the opportunity to play and to play early will be a big factor for him.  And the comfort level with the coaches.  Staying home won’t be the end all on his decision.”

During his stint in College Station, Coach Turgeon showed quite a bit of interest in Ibeh spending time in the gym watching him in games as well as workouts and practice.  According to Clarkson, Turgeon early on was intrigued with Ibeh enough to frequently tell his high school coach that he wanted to have him and that has continued now that Turgeon is now in College Park.

Clarkson thinks Ibeh will be a November signee.  “He’s always said he wanted to do it in November.    Obviously if he’s not comfortable and not ready then he’ll take more time.”

With coaches calling him almost daily and new schools trying to get involved, Clarkson didn’t speculate on Maryland’s chances but indicated that the recent visit to College Park helped the Terps.  “He went from being leery to definitely considering it.”
Author: Jeremy | 7/18/2011 7:47:05 PM |

My Guest Column In The Register-Citizen

The Register-Citizen is Jordan Williams' hometown newspaper.  Sports editor Dan Podheiser was kind enough to ask me to write a guest column for Sunday's paper about Jordan's prospects in the NBA.  As loyal Soup readers, I offer you an early crack at it.  Enjoy! Guest Column: Jordan Williams will struggle early on, but ultimate [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 7/2/2011 7:57:06 PM |

My Terp Football Preview For College Football Zealots

The good folks at College Football Zealots asked if I would be so kind as to participate in a Q and A about Maryland Football for their site.  The piece on Maryland drops on July 1st; but I decided to cross post my answers here since things are pretty quiet on the basketball recruiting front.  Enjoy! (PS: Don't say I don't care about the [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 7/1/2011 12:00:00 AM |

NBA Draft Thread - Jordan Williams Edition

Schadenfreude is a German word that means pleasure derived from the misfortunes of others.  Tonight, I think there will be many Terp fans who will experience this odd sensation as Jordan Williams awaits his fate from the Draft Gods.  I will not be one of them. Don't get me wrong. I'm terribly disappointed that Jordan made such a rash and [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 6/23/2011 10:03:18 AM |

The Death Of A Dream - 25 Years Later

(Editor's note:  I haven't posted about the big NBPA 100 camp going on this weekend because I'm not there and frankly, DBR is going to have much better information than me.  However, I expect that after the camp has ended; we will get an idea next week of exactly whom the coaching staff thinks they can land.) June 19th, 1986 is a day t [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 6/17/2011 8:44:37 AM |

Thoughts On The State Of College Athletics

Two events of the past 45 days have left me with lingering melancholy.  The first is Gary Williams' retirement and Maryland's subsequent head-first dive into the world of big-time college recruiting. It has been well documented that 5-star recruits were basically off-limits to Terp fans under Williams.  Fans and alumni bitterly compla [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 6/8/2011 6:13:45 PM |

All Quiet On The Recruiting Front

I tell ya, it is either feast or famine when it comes to the Terps these days.  I'm not even talking about the hideous events we witnessed from the Men's and Women's Lacrosse teams.  I'm just pointing to the fact that May was a never ending barrage of news.  From Gary's shocking retirement, to the carousel of potential replacements, [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 5/31/2011 11:23:56 AM |

Lax Championship Thread

The Terps Men's Lacrosse Team can erase 36 years of heartbreak and missed opportunities by beating UVA in Baltimore this afternoon. Maryland dominated UVA in Charlottesville earlier this year.  At one point, the Terps reeled of something like 7-straight goals en route to a 12-7 win.  Now, UVA appears to be a different team.  They [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 5/30/2011 7:17:40 AM |

Lax Final Four Thread

Despite Wheels' statements to the contrary; I like the Men's Lacrosse team.  I don't write about them because I never played the sport and don't know enough to speak intelligently about it.  What's more, they've never given me a reason to believe they could win it all.  Until last weekend, that is. The Men's Lacrosse team have bee [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 5/27/2011 7:30:43 PM | Tags: lacrosse |

Justin Anderson Verbally Commits To UVA

The news is of no surprise to those that have been following the situation; but Justin Anderson has decided to take his talents to Charlottesville. I wish him the best of luck.  UVA's program and tradition pales in comparison to that of Maryland; but Anderson clearly wanted to play for Gary Williams and Rob Ehsan.  Since that is no longer [...] Read More »

Author: Jeremy | 5/26/2011 7:36:31 AM |
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