The 7th annual addition of Blue Star 30 was held was held August 4-7 at the Wiregrass Ranch Sports Campus, in Wesley Chapel, Florida. The event aims to bring together elite players from rising freshmen (class of 2026) and younger classes for a combination of instruction and competition. This year approximately 40 invited players from all over the USA attended. From scouts’ row, at least 25 to perhaps over 30 will receive Power 5 offers (many already have!).
In this era of player entitlement down into middle school, it will be harder than ever to attract every top player to any one camp. Some may feel it is unnecessary as they already have multiple offers. Others may have been playing other sports and for some, perhaps most important, travel costs to come and stay for three nights in Wesley Chapel, Florida, can run over $1500 with plane fare, lodging and car rental and not all can easily afford that.
In talking to a few of these youthful participants and parents, a couple of things came across to me as to what makes the camp so special.
First, the obvious is that these very young players get to compete on the court with other similar elite girls of approximately the same age. To face this level of competition, most would either have to play against talented boys or significantly older girls of at least modest talent.
Second, and perhaps most important to these young ladies, is the off-court experience of meeting at one time so many talented (some more talented than themselves) middle school players who share the same desires and dreams for the future and the same pressures of being expected to perform as the elite of their local teams.
While all attendees should come away with significant gain from attendance, the real winners may be the players who struggled to succeed on these courts and now can go home with a better understanding of where they stand in the big picture and what (players can get individual evaluation if they wish) they need to work on to improve their overall game skills.
Humble thoughts to improve the camp...
Play a bit more as these kids don’t get this opportunity (mentioned above) back home.
Keep lectures to maybe five (ten max) minutes interlaced with activity. The information (discussion of NIL deals was particularly well received) being put forth was very worth assimilating but these very young kids can only absorb so much before losing focus. The staff is first rate with coaches who have had success at the college, high school and club level.
If you are a parent/guardian or coach of a player who is lucky enough to get invited to Blue Star 30, I strongly urge you to encourage the young lady to attend. There is no charge for camp participation itself.
Below briefly are twelve players who have a strong probability to get (or already have) Power 5 offers. Many others could have been noted as well!
Players discussed recently in relation to other events are not mentioned even with a noteworthy performance here.
Players below are listed alphabetically within graduation class with height, position and home town.
Jacy Abii, 6-1, power forward, Frisco, Texas
Abii is powerful and agile finishing at the rim. She also showed the ability to step out some to hit at mid-range.
Ariyana Cradle, 5-6, point guard, Westerville, Ohio
Cradle showed some explosive power getting to the rim along with a perimeter stroke
Oliviyah Edwards, 6-3, forward, Tacoma, Washington
Edwards combines great height with superior athleticism in attacking the rim off the bounce.
Autumn Fleary, 5-8, point guard, Baltimore, Maryland
Fleary combines quality handles, athleticism, ability to attack the rim or set up teammates.
Jaidyn Gunter, 5-7, point guard, McKinney, Texas
An athlete with good handles, Gunter can also hit the three.
Jayla Jordyn Jackson, 6-1, wing, Washington, DC
Jackson shows power beyond her years in attacking the rim able to change directions along the way.
Trinity Jones, 6-0, forward, Naperville, Illinois
An agile athlete, Jones showed above average passing skill and ability to finish at the rim overcoming contact.
KieAundria Acree, 5-11, small forward, Albany, Georgia
A lean athlete able to attack the rim, Acree’s perimeter shot must be respected
Finley Chastain, 5-10, guard, Celina, Texas
A lefty with bouncy feet, Chastain can hit the three but also shows good court vision.
Khalia Hartwell, 6-4, center, Anderson, South Carolina
Having great size, decent mobility and strong build, Hartwell can post up and face up in the key.
Jessie Moses, 5-9, point guard, Lower Merion, Pennsylvania
A decent athlete with good handles, Moses is known online as “Jessie Buckets” and with a good perimeter stroke lives up to the billing.
Jayden McClain, 6-3, center/power forward, Florence, Kentucky
It is hard to believe this player is just going into the sixth grade showing good mobility and coordination not looking out of place against older post players of quality.