PARK, Md. (WUSA) -- When head coach Mark Turgeon signed recruit Jake Layman to
play for the basketball team, it was considered a huge steal. Layman had been
climbing many scouts recruiting boards as the small forward dominated
the Massachusetts prep school circuit.
Well, you can now add representing his country to a list of
Layman has made the final roster for the nation's FIBA Under-18 basketball
team. That means this summer, he will representing the United States and hopes
to bring home the gold for the country.
When he was invited to tryout, very few
thought he'd make the final cut. The invitation was viewed as a good opportunity for Layman to go
against elite competition. Many scouts were skeptical about his skills because they
did not believe he faced real talent at the high school level. Twenty-three
other basketball standouts were invited to tryout, but only 12 made the roster.
Layman beat out praised recruits such as the Harrison twins (who are on top
of Turgeon's wishlist), Gonzaga star Nate Britt, and UNC's Joel James.
Layman was already
considered a top 100 recruit before signing with Maryland, but after a summer
of playing some of the best young talent in the world, you have to think he
will be the most game-ready recruit going into next season.
And if playing
against superb players doesn't make him better, perhaps the tutelage from a national
champion coach might. Florida's Billy Donovan heads a coaching staff that also
boasts VCU's Shaka Smart and Gonzaga University's Mark Few.
Many forwards have had some success after
competing in this tournament. Some notable players are Carmelo Anthony, Chris
Bosh, and Andre Iguodala. Is Jake
Layman the next notable star?