|2013 Jarell Martin|
Baton Rouge, LA
Madison Prep Academy
(photo courtesy of rivals.com)
It has been an amazing summer for the 2013 stud from Madison Preparatory School in Baton Rouge, LA, Jarell Martin. The 6'7" 210 lb. small forward has really blown up over the past few months. We have been told about this kid for a year now. First by his high school coach, Jeff Jones. Coach Jones told us he had a kid that was very raw(with ability) that could shoot and was very athletic, and coach was right as always. Another person, EJ Avery, one of Martin's first AAU coaches and kind of a close mentor, said Martin was not too strong but talented. He was right as well. So, after several months of wait, we finally got our first peak of the rising star at a tournament in Baton Rouge back in late March.
The first game he played was against La. Tech signee Michael Kayser. Jarell was very impressive, scoring on post moves, mid-range jumpers, 3-pointers, and transition dunks. The next game was the same as they played a highly talented team from Mississippi featuring 6'8" Jamal Hester (C/O 2012 Madison Ridgeland HS) and Twymond Howard (Rivals.com Top 100 player for 2012). Martin continued to do work in his 2nd game of the night as he had close to 30 points and 15 rebounds in a close loss. The 3rd game he played was the one that really caught our attention as he was playing against the Dallas Mustangs-Booker featuring top 10 Keith Frazier in the 2013 class. As the game started, you could see Martin was about to go off. He opened with a 3 deep, followed by some key blocks, rebounds and nice assists. As the 1st half went on, Martin was just amazing, looking at my notes from that day, he had 13 points, 6 rebounds and 4 blocks in the 1st half to go with 3 steals and assists. In the second half and overtime it was Martin vs. Frazier. The unknown star went even with and more often than not got the best of Frazier. The two traded deep 3's, mid-range pull-ups, dunks, including a Martin dunk on top of the Mustangs 6'6" post Soma Edo. In consecutive possessions, Frazier hit a 3 over Martin, Martin then returned the favor with a corner 3 over Frazier, Frazier followed with a miss and Martin then hit the go ahead triple over Frazier. Martin's team got the win, while Martin got what he wanted, somebody with credibility to get his name on the national radar.
As the game was going on, we tweeted Martin's fantastic game. Tweets were sent to rivals.com analysts Jerry Meyer and Eric Bossi, scout.com's Evan Daniels and Brian Snow, ESPN's Dave Telep and Van Coleman of Top 100 Hoops. All responded in awe and all asked for Martin's summer schedule. After the game, we spoke with Martin and coach EJ Avery. Both told us to do what we had to do to get him known. To say the least, we believe we did. The credit doesn't go to us, but to Jarell, Coach Avery, Coach Jones and to Brandon Bass Elite founder Scooter Owens. Three weeks later, Jarell got invited to the Nike Top 100 camp, had an article on rivals, scout, Top 100 and ESPN. A month later, was nationally ranked by Rivals at 89. With all the accolades coming to Jarell, he was so humble when we asked how he did. He said, "Coach, I just did ok. I was coming off an ankle injury and I kind of struggled. I did show athleticism and my shot off though." Martin is such a humble and hardworking kid. After his performance in Arkansas at the Real Deal in the Rock, Martin's next stop was the Memorial Day Classic in New Orleans where he led the New Orleans Elite to a championship finish with wins over the Houston Defenders(they have 3 top 50 players, Aaron and Andrew Harrison and 6'9" Shaquille Cleare), ATL Celtics and a few others. The team features Javan Felix(2012 PG with tons of high major offers), Craig Victor, one of the top 2014 players nationally and Martin. During that weekend, Martin avg. 17 and 8. Following this event, Martin was featured in a Slam Magazine Online article.
His next stop was his biggest and most important, it was the NIKE top 100 event in St. Louis, MO. The two weeks leading up to the event, we got to watch Martin in summer league action with his HS team. It was a nice change of pace for Martin as he was put on the low block because he was his teams biggest player. He didn't look too comfortable down there but he was still able to score on turnaround jumpers and hook shots. In transition he was amazing as one game he threw down a windmill and on the next possession a dunk on top of a kid. After the last game we saw him play, we spoke with Martin on being aggressive, not taking plays off and being able to dominate no matter the competition. It sometimes seemed like that in HS basketball he was being complacent, instead of being the aggressor. Also, when he got to camp, he had to be the aggressor too, defensively and offensively and not be passive. He must have taken the advice because in the next scout.com 2013 rankings Martin was placed in the top 40 at 37. A major jump for an unranked kid. Since the event and the release of the rankings, Martin has continued to excel. He went up to the Adidas Invitational with Brandon Bass Elite and did well again and on Friday of this past week, he had perhaps the dunk of the summer as he went between the legs in transition. The proof, well it is below, thanks to the website Yay Area's Finest and BallisLife for both capturing this dunk.
It was simply amazing. The sky is the limit for this kid out of Baton Rouge, LA. He is humble, hungry and a hard worker. He is Jarell Martin!!