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Recruiting: A Look At the Penn State Advanced Skills Camp

Looking at some key recruits from a big weekend in Happy Valley.

Matthew O'Haren-USA TODAY Sports

This past weekend Penn State basketball played host to a couple of commitments, several key targets and a few brand new ones as Pat Chambers and his staff ran the PSU Advanced Skills basketball camp.

Class of 2015 Commitments

Both Mike Watkins and Deividas Zemgulis were in attendance, getting their first real chance to play together under the direction of Pat Chambers and his staff.

Watkins has been a steady riser on most scout's radars lately. In the latest Rivals 150 prospect rankings the 6'8" big man rose to No. 114. All indications are that he is still a raw product offensively, but the skills that Chambers and his staff covet -- rebounding, blocks and stout defense -- were apparent throughout the camp.

Zemguilis was stroking it, showcasing a smooth jumper that should really help the Nittany Lions spread the floor anytime he's out there. The Lithuanian's defense was a bit of a pleasant surprise, showing a heady ability to stick with his man and displaying a knack for getting his hands on the ball.

Chambers and Co. will undoubtedly be walking away happy with the skill set these two young recruits displayed.

Class of 2015 Targets

Josh Reaves has been a longtime target of Chambers and PSU. From all reports, Reaves was treated like a 5-star king upon his arrival, but that apparently did not stop him from putting in work on the court.

The 6'5" guard, who will be playing for national power Oak Hill Academy next season, was a menace on both ends of the floor. His transition game was reportedly his strongest asset, showing the speed and power to get out and finish with ease.

Samir Doughty came into camp without an offer from PSU, but when he woke this Monday he had a fresh new scholarship sitting on his table from the Nittany Lions. Doughty is a slight (6'3", 170 lbs.) guard who plays much bigger and far more ferociously than his size might indicate. He's got that Allen Iverson chip on his shoulder. Doughty is a teammate of Watkins and showcased some excellent teamwork with him during scrimmage sessions. He played well enough to garner an offer, and it should be interesting to see where his recruitment goes from here. He also holds offers from St. Joe's, Rhode Island and Temple.

Kiper Nichols had a solid camp, displaying some polish on the offensive end and a nice ability to finish around the rim and through bigger bodies. The 6'6" wing has seen his recruitment pick up some steam lately. The Ohio product recently added offers from Maryland and Minnesota to a growing list of suitors, including PSU, Dayton, Kent State and Xavier. There is some talk of Nicholas and Esa Ahmad being a package deal, but nothing is set in stone as of now. Xavier is currently the front runner for Nichols' services.

Class of 2016 Targets

Easily the highest prospect on Chamber's list of the 2016 triumvirate that came to Happy Valley, Joe Hampton displayed why he is regarded as, at the minimum, a Top-70 talent (Ranked No. 69 in the 247 Composite, but No. 38 on the Top247 list.)

As he is wont to do, Hampton devoured the boards and did some heavy lifting downlow. Despite being undersized as a 4, Hampton is an excellent low post player, and his nose for the ball on the glass was apparent. Hampton has been to PSU a few times, but also holds offers from DePaul and Xavier, with Maryland reportedly beginning to draw a lot of attention from the 6'6" forward.

A.J. Wilson is an altogether different 6'6" forward. His athleticism is elite and his jumper is anything but. Penn State offered Wilson a scholarship back in December, and this was his first time back on campus since November (Pennsylvania is considerably more inviting in June than November, a plus for Chambers.). Wilson dazzled with his high-flying activities, and showed an improved if still inconsistent offensive game. PSU remains Wilson's only scholarship offer.

The last of the 2016 trio measures in just a bit shorter than the 6'6" his possible future teammates stand. That would be the diminutive Alani Moore of DeMatha Catholic (Md.). According to 247Sports, "The 5-foot-9 floor general held court for two days - finding teammates with inventive passes, knocking down shots from beyond the arc, and getting to the rim off the bounce." Moore only has an offer from PSU on the table, as most teams are still a bit wary of his stature. However, he has two more years to grow and if he can add another three or four inches this kid is going to shoot way up the rankings and onto every East Coast scout's radar.

Recruiting News & Notes

Class of 2016 unranked point guard Randall Broddie visited the PSU campus on Friday, but did not attend the camp. Broddie reportedly received a scholarship offer from Chambers during his visit.

Broddie averaged 20.1 points at Potomac High School (Md.) as a sophomore and is poised to have a big junior season as he looks to lead his team's defend of their Class 2A State Title. Broddie currently holds offers from SMU and Cincinnati, with Maryland reportedly interested as well.

Class of 2015 football and basketball savant Brandon Childress took an unofficial visit to the Penn State campus on June 24. Childress has twelve scholarship offers on the table, and despite Central Michigan offering him both a football and basketball scholarship, West Virginia appears to be the favorite to land the extremely gifted 6'3" guard.

Class of 2016 forward Travis Aston also received an offer from Chambers and the Nittany Lions this past week. Atson is a 6'5" wing who plays at Christ the King (N.Y.). Aston holds several offers from mid-level and low-level mid-major programs.

Unranked Class of 2016 guard Ian Sistare, a 6'3" recruit out of Northfield, Mass., received a formal scholarship offer from Chambers on June 24. Sistare also holds offers from Boston College, Xavier and Rhode Island. He is supposedly infatuated with the thought of playing at Duke, though whether he develops into a Duke-caliber player remains to be seen.

Class of 2015 4-Star center and recent Penn State target, Georgios Papagiannis has signed a deal with Greek basketball powerhouse Panathinaikos. He can return to play stateside next summer, so the 7'1" Greek god's college recruitment might not be entirely over.