Lake Clifton's Harried Has Special Interest In NBA Draft
By Keith Mills
The NBA will hold its annual draft Thursday night in New Jersey and veteran Lake Clifton basketball coach Herman Harried will be watching closely.
Will Barton, who helped the 2009 Lakers go unbeaten en route to the Class 3A state championship, is expected to be among the 60 players drafted. The question is whether the Memphis University sophomore, who spent a year at Brewster Academy in New Hampshire before playing for the Tigers, will go during the first or second round.
Editor's Note: The Portland Trail Blazers selected Will Barton with the 40th pick in the 2012 NBA Draft. (Added June 28, 2012 at 11:10 p.m.)
"When Will decided to declare for the draft," Harried said, "we talked about all the possibilities -- going back to school, going pro, where he might get drafted. One thing never changed. Will Barton is a winner, and he can play."
Barton, a 6-foot-6 guard who started 59 of 70 games with the Tigers, averaged 15 points during his two years. He is leaving behind a team that also includes his brother Antonio, the Tigers' 6-foot-2 point guard.
The Barton brothers and 6-foot-8 Cleveland Melvin, who just finished his sophomore year at DePaul, led Lake Clifton to a 28-0 season and the school's third state championship three years ago. The Lakers won their fourth this past March when they beat Largo for the Class 2A championship behind Aaron Parks and Daquan Ross.
It was the third state title for Harried, who took over for the late Charlie Moore in 1997 and has kept Lake Clifton among the city and state's premier programs.
Josh Selby was Harried's first NBA player. Selby spent the 2009-10 season at Lake Clifton and left Kansas after his freshman year. He was picked during the second round of the NBA draft last year and split his rookie pro year between the Memphis Grizzlies and Reno of the NBA Development League.
Will Barton is likely to be Harried's second NBA player. Many mock drafts around the league have him being selected by the Chicago Bulls with the 29th pick of the first round, though Harried has talked to a variety of teams, including the Bulls, Indiana Pacers and Oklahoma City Thunder.
Whenever he's asked about one of his former players, whether it's Selby or Will Barton, Harried tells the truth.
"One thing I am not willing to give up is my credibility," said Harried, who graduated from Dunbar in 1984 and played on the Poets' 1983 national championship juggernaut. "My word is my bond. My credibility is my future. It's respect.
"You're going to give me something good to say about you or something bad. But I'm going to say one of the two. And when those GMs call and I'm sharing stories with them, I think sometimes it's hard for them to believe all the good I'm saying about these high school kids who I have never had a problem with.
"When an Indiana calls, or a Golden State, it's a joy, very rewarding. It's rewarding because you know the time you put in with these young people. I think they expect me to say many times that they caused me problems, that 'He never came to practice,' that 'He never came to work hard.' They may have had a problem with someone else, but they didn't have a problem with me."
Barton, Randallstown's Kim English, Mount St. Joseph's Henry Sims and Old Mill's Travis Hyman are eligible for the draft. NBA.com has both English and Sims being picked in the second round in its latest mock draft. NBA.com is projecting that Golden State will use the 35th pick to select English, who just finished an outstanding career at Missouri, while Sims, who had a productive final year at Georgetown, is projected to go 49th to Orlando. The 7-foot Hyman from Bowie State will likely sign a free-agent contract.
Kentucky's Anthony Davis is projected to go as the No. 1 pick to New Orleans and Thomas Robinson of Kansas No. 2 to Charlotte. Florida's Bradley Beal is projected to go No. 3 to the Washington Wizards.
Harried is no stranger to Beal or to several other players expected to go during the first round. Two years ago, Harried served an assistant to Don Showalter, who was the head coach of the U.S. men's developmental national team. Together, Harried and Showalter, the coach at Mid-Prairie High in Iowa, helped the United States win the gold medal during the 2010 Under-17 World Championships in Hamburg, Germany.
That roster included Beal; Quinn Cook, who went to DeMatha and is now a sophomore at Duke; Justin Anderson from Montrose Christian in Rockville; James McAdoo of North Carolina; Andre Drummond of Connecticut; and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Marquis Teague of Kentucky, the defending national champion.
"That whole team was loaded with Division I players," said Harried, who played his college basketball at Syracuse. "What I enjoyed about coaching them is as talented as they were, they were also willing to play together. That said a lot about their character. But we were talented. Marquis Teague didn't even start on that team."
Beal, who went to Chaminade College Prep in St. Louis, may be picked third overall in tomorrow night's draft. Kidd-Gilchrist and Teague also are likely first-round selections.
"Teague came off the bench," Harried said. "Can you believe that? We had so much talent. We had a good group of guys and had so many scouts at practice."
Andre Drummond, the 6-foot-11 center from Connecticut, is projected as a first-rounder, while McAdoo, a graduate of Norfolk Christian High School in Norfolk, Va., will return to North Carolina.
"The guy who stood out the most for me was James McAdoo," Harried said. "He always had a very serious approach, a no-nonsense approach. He liked to laugh, but he said, 'Let's get the job done first.' When a kid has that kind of approach, he will be a success in life, much less basketball."
The U.S. team ripped through the U-17 world championships, finishing 8-0 and beating Poland, 111-80, for the championship. Harried also had success as coach of the U.S. team in Memphis in 2006 at the Nike Summit, a key moment at the time in the development of U.S. basketball.
After absolutely dominating international competition for 50 years, the United States had lost the 2002 world championships, the 2004 Olympics and was about to lose the 2006 world championship when Harried was named coach of the Nike Summit in '06.
"The U.S. started realizing that they're playing basketball all over the world and they were giving us a run for our money," Harried said. "The first year at the Nike Summit, I was the assistant. Then in '06, I was named the head coach. The committee sat down with me and I remember them saying we had to win. Don't worry about substitutions. Just win."
Team USA did, thanks to then-18-year-old Kevin Durant of Montrose Christian; Wayne Ellington and Gerald Henderson of Episcopal High in Alabama; and Prince George's County's Ty Lawson of Oak Hill Academy. Both Ellington and Lawson went on to North Carolina, while Henderson headed to Duke.
"That team bought into to what we were doing," Harried said. "The world was getting better. We had to stop getting by on just talent, and start playing defense. We'd watch these USA teams get beat on backdoor cuts, ball movement. In America, we're used to playing one-on-one, or one pass and shoot. We had to start playing defense."
Harried and the United States beat the World Select Team, 109-91. Three years later, Harried watched the Barton brothers and Melvin win Lake Clifton's third state championship. In 2010, he watched one of the most talented U.S. teams roll through the U-17 worlds on the way to a gold medal in Hamburg, Germany. This past March, he watched Aaron Parks pour in 22 points and add14 rebounds as his Lakers high school team beat South Carroll and Largo for a fourth state championship.
"It's been a nice run," Harried said. "Winning the gold medal in Hamburg, Germany, was special. We played some very good teams. We had some games that were tight for 2 1/2 quarters and then we just beat them down, and before you know it, we won by 25 points."
Harried has spent a lot of time the last four years watching former players on television. Now, he hopes to watch Will Barton walk on stage as a first-round draft pick.
"It was a pleasure to flip around the channels the last couple of years and watch DePaul on one channel, Memphis on another and Kansas on another," Harried said. "That's been a great reward for all the time you put in and obstacles you jump through."
Posted June 27, 2012