Monday, February 25, 2008

Greg Monroe- The Best Player in the South . . . and the Nation?

Greg Monroe of Helen Cox (LA) is regarded as one of the top high school basketball players in the nation, if not the best. Monroe's Cougars faced off with the Dolphins of Whitney Young (IL) to start off night games on February 9th at Sovereign Bank Arena for the Prime Time Shootout. In a game filled with stars, including Monroe's teammates Calvin Thompson and Taj Givens, as well as Ahmad Starks, Bryan Hall, and Marcus Jordan, the son of Michael Jordan, it was Monroe who shined the brightest. The 6'10 senior center displayed a wonderful inside-outside game that only one other player at the event came close to competing with, Kevin Jones of Mt. Vernon (NY). Prior to his team's big game, I spoke with the best player in the South.

NB: You guys got a big game tonight, a showdown with Whitney [Young]. What’s it like going up to that game [with an] out-of-state team [in a] big atmosphere?
GM: Well, it’s just really about . . . just getting a big jump early, and asserting ourselves in games like this. You can’t really fall behind in games like this, because it’s . . . hard to catch back up, so it’s really just trying to jump out early.

NB: What’s it going to be like playing against Michael Jordan’s son [Marcus]? Does that add an extra element to the game, or you’re not even thinking about it?
GM: Well I don’t think [so]. By them being out-of-state, we really don’t have much of a scouting report on him, so everything is probably going to be honest, just playing honest D, and help-side like we normally do. So, that’s it.

NB: You’ve committed to Georgetown. What went into that decision to go there?
GM: Just . . . the coach really, just Coach [John] Thompson [III], being comfortable with Coach Thompson. He’s down-to-earth, [it’s] real easy to talk to him, a guy [with whom I’ve] formed a good relationship.

NB: What’s it going to be like next year . . . filling Roy Hibbert’s shoes once he’s gone?
GM: Well I really don’t . . . think of it that way, as filling Roy Hibbert’s shoes. We probably wouldn’t be playing the same position, so I never think that at all.

NB: What’s it like with all the pressure you’ve been getting throughout your senior season, your junior season, and building up to finally signing with Georgetown? What was that like for you dealing with all that?
GM: Well, . . . it just is a process that I went through, took my time with it, took the good with the bad with the process, just took all the time I needed to make the right decision for me.

The Cougars got the win, and Monroe was the best player on the court. In fact, the big man may have been the best player at the event. Greg showed off a nice stroke, as well a solid game on the low-post. There has been some thought that Monroe does not put forth consistent effort, but this was not the case at the Prime Time Shootout, as he was absolutely dominant. Monroe might have trouble filling Hibbert's shoes, but that's because they could be a bit small for him. Greg Monroe is poised for stardom, as he has a complete, top-notch game, that just might make him the best player in the nation.

Note- photo is from

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