The BallisLife All-American Game for 2017 is in the books, and this year future Wildcats Ira Lee and Brandon Randolph took it to a whole new level.
Before future Wildcats Ira Lee and Brandon Randolph even touched a ball, YouTube sensations CashNasty, OSN, and Kristopher London made a huge splash when they were led to their reserved courtside seats. People of all ages rushed to all of them to get autographs and selfies. This crew would eventually judge the Dunk Contest and played a pickup game with the players the night before in Venice Beach. OSN wore a Lonzo Ball Jersey, so you know he didn’t buy it (winky smiley emoji).
As the fans piled in, and there was a line around the corner to get in, future Wildcat Shareef O’Neal and Arizona recruit Bol Bol were playing one-on-one. Bol would put his arms in the air, and Shareef would start to laugh; there was no way O’Neal would be able to get the ball over his outstretched arms. Even Bol cracked a smile, and that you don’t see often.
These two were swarmed with little fans in the lobby at half-time. It was great seeing so many fans so excited about High School juniors. Visibility and fandom are starting earlier and earlier for basketball players with offers playing on power AAU teams like Compton Magic and Cal Supreme.
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Neither Arizona Basketball signees Ira Lee or Brandon Randolph took place in the three-point contest; they were getting ready for the dunk contest. The BILAAG Dunk contest has become something special for Los Angeles Wildcats fans, the Wildcats that are invited seem to have some of the biggest hops in High School
Last year it was Rawle Alkins and Terrance Ferguson, and this year it was Lee and Randolph. As you can imagine, a lot of fan cheers went to the Bruins and Trojan, just because of the location of the game. But our soon-to-be Wildcats put on a show!
Even when their dunks didn’t go in, the action leading up to the almost dunk was impressive. Jaylen Hands got his dunks to go in, and one dunk, in particular, got all tens. There were four future Bruins playing in the game; Jalen Hill PF who grabbed every rebound within five feet of him, Jaylen Hands PG, Chris Wilkes who was pretty impressive and Liangelo Ball who played better than what has been reported.
His father LaVar, Lonzo and Lamelo Ball entered from the back of the gym and sat down courtside right before the game, the rest of the Bruin parents sat in the stands. And yes, they were all in BBB gear. Jaylen Hands had the biggest crowd by far cheering him on. His whole family was there, and they were very supportive.
Other notables in the game: Ethan Thompson (Oregon State signee) who burst on the scene scoring the first nine points. Thompson is a soon-to-be graduate of Bishop Montgomery, whose Knights won the CIF California Champs against Chino Hills High Shcool. Also playing on the White Team with Randolph was recently announced UNLV commit Brandon McCoy (Arizona target.) McCoy was impressive, one of the more dominant big men on the court, he took home the MVP trophy.
Arizona targets Brian Bowen with his flowing blond hair as well as Trevon Duval also played but didn’t show much emotion. The two Arizona Targets played well but didn’t make the splash that Lee and Randolph did. Maybe that was on purpose? Brian Bowen took a visit to Oregon this week. He is still deciding.
The Wildcats-to-be were very impressive. Lee continually slammed down the ball through the net on Team Black and Randolph would return the favor on the other end for Team White. The coaches played the Wildcats against each other, so they played at the same time. Wildcats fans have a ton to look forward too.
After the game, fans swarmed the Wildcats. Lee and Randolph won over the huge crowd because of how well they played and how exciting they were to watch.
Somehow, Miller’s commits are some of the sweetest young men; they have a ton of respect for fans, family, and the media. Both Lee and Randolph were complementary towards each other.
But we finally got the two together after hoards of fans swarmed both of them on each side of the gym for autographs and selfies. There was a very sweet moment between Ira and his father, taking the day in with a big hug. Brandon’s family was also in attendance and very proud of their young man.
Here is our exclusive interview with our new Wildcats, don’t miss it!
Next season is going to be so much fun! Bear Down!