Last month we mentioned that McDonald’s All-American, and North Carolina Tar Heels commit, Coby White had been invited to training camp for Team USA U-18 Men’s Basketball team. On Sunday morning it was announced that the 6’4 combo guard survived the first round of cuts when the roster was trimmed from 33 to 18 players. The remaining participants will continue to try and impress the coaching staff, led by Kansas Jayhawks head coach Bill Self, as they chase one of the final 12 spots.
A five-star, top-25 talent in the 2018 recruiting class, Coby apparently put on quite the show over the four day training camp. Multiple national recruiting analysts commented on his scoring ability, acknowledging that he was the best pure scorer on the floor. That’s an important distinction from being the best “shooter” and confirms the versatility he will bring to the Dean Dome next season.
White continued to earn respect for his ability to produce from both inside and outside the arc, as these tweets and highlight video indicate. These are just a small sampling of the impressions White left on scouts and on-lookers. Perhaps most impressive in the video provided by HoopFocus was White’s willingness and ability to take contact and finish at the rim.
One thing that hasn't changed over past couple years is that I like Coby White more every time I scout him. New Age Microwave and more.— Jerry Meyer (@jerrymeyer247) June 1, 2018
Coby White has come out on fire this morning at USA under-18 trials. One of the more confident scorers nationally. Should have no issues finding a role doing just that for UNC next season— Corey Evans (@coreyevans_10) June 1, 2018
These observations match his own comments after the all-star circuits this past spring. He earned rave reviews in the practice sessions leading up to the McDonald’s All-American Game and the Jordan Brand Classic but was overshadowed during the actual games by other top players in the class of 2018. One of those players was fellow UNC recruit Nassir Little earned MVP honors in both games.
Unsurprisingly, the all-time leading scorer in North Carolina high school history knew what he was talking about. In environments that place a greater emphasis on winning than one-on-one highlight reels, White continues to gain recognition for his ability to compete and produce against the top competition in the nation. Now, he’s one step away from earning the right to compete against some of the top talent from other countries.
Players will continue conducting two-a-day training sessions in Colorado Springs, CO until the final team is named before they depart on June 7th St. Catherines, Canada for the 2018 FIBA Americas U18 Championship. Current UNC class of 2019 targets Matthew Hurt, Armando Bacot, Keion Brooks, and Jeremiah Robinson-Earl are also among the remaining 18 participants.
The United States will be hunting their fifth straight gold medal in the 8-team event. The top four teams will qualify for the 2019 FIBA U19 World Cup. The tournament will run from June 10-16.
Team USA will the preliminary round in Group A. Their first opponent is the Dominican Republic on June 10, followed by Panama on June 11, and finishing against Puerto Rico on June 12. At the completion of those games, all eight teams are re-seeded for the final four days of the tournament. Argentina, Canada, Chile, and Ecuador make up the other four countries in Group B.