MILWAUKEE – It wasn’t necessary for Ryan Marks to knock on my door at 5:15 a.m. this morning. I was already awake and rearing to go.
You see, I’ve grinded it out before – back in the day as a recruiting guy.
This was going to be a breeze for me.
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His mother had prepared a buffet breakfast – fruit, cereal, bagels, etc.
Eat your heart out, Parrish.
This was clearly an upgrade for whatever Parrish threw into his gullet this morning.
Then we got in Marks’ mother’s 2002 Lexus and headed to Milwaukee, where we walked into the gym at the NY2LA Sports event around 8 a.m.
It was then that Marks realized they had switched the schedule – and the player we had rushed to see for an 8:15 a.m. game was actually playing an hour later.
There were literally a handful of coaches in attendance when we got there – and Marks and Drake’s Mark Phelps were the only D-1 head men in the building.
The building slowly began to fill up with coaches – nearly all of them of the low-major, mid-major and even of the Division 2 and Division 3 variety.
There were even a few more head coaches that showed – Mike Young (Wofford), Brian Wardle (Green Bay), Rob Jeter (Milwaukee), Tim Jankovich (Illinois State) and Kerry Keating (Santa Clara).
But there wasn’t a high-major head coach in sight – and few high-major prospects.
Most of those guys are where I just left – in Indianapolis – and also where Parrish has stationed himself today and tomorrow for the prestigious LeBron James Camp.
Marks met his assistant, Nick Bennett (Tony Bennett’s cousin) and watched a bunch of games this morning involving Midwest teams.
This is basketball at its purest form, including many teams that actually share and move the basketball.
It’s about 1:30 local time and I just downed a plate of pasta in the hospitality room, but Marks still hasn’t gone for lunch.
He remains in the bleachers – where I’m heading back now to watch more guys trying to earn a scholarship.
For more of our college basketball recruiting road trip, click here.