Many high school basketball players from across West Virginia play in AAU tournaments all around the country. AAU teams will some times travel as far as Las Vegas, Nevada to play against the best competition. This week’s West Virginia Hoop Group JamFest is their opportunity to have a home court advantage.
Six teams from West Virginia are competing in the Jam Fest: Nelson Jordan Center, NSBC Rampage, WV Ballers, WV Wildcats Elmore, and two separate West Virginia Wildcats Select teams. The teams are in either U17 or U16 age groups and are playing all over the Greater Morgantown area.
Nathan Adrian, an ESPNU 2-star recruit, plays for the West Virginia Wildcats U16 team. The 6-foot-7 power forward from Morgantown says he enjoys having the JamFest in his hometown.
“I get to stay at home,” says Adrian. “I enjoy playing against people of this skill level.”
Adrian’s Wildcats have advanced to the 16U Gold Bracket Quarterfinals with their Friday afternoon win over Team Melo out of Baltimore.
With college scouts in attendance, including Pittsburgh Head Coach Jamie Dixon, the Wildcats had more pressure than usual. Adrian believes this exposure does not affect their game.
“We come in thinking we can beat anybody,” says Adrian. “That’s how we work, and it usually works for us. I usually don’t get nervous, but some people might.”
Adrian will have to get used to this pressure within the next couple years at Morgantown High School. The rising junior is being recruited by schools such as Washington State, West Virginia, Virginia Tech and some mid-major programs.
As far as his teammates are concerned, the JamFest is an opportunity to be recruited as well as play in front of many friends and family that otherwise would not necessarily make the trip to out-of-state tournaments.
JamFest Championship and consolation games take place Saturday at Morgantown and University high schools.