Like most schools, George Mason's Midnight Madness event is not simply about ginning up excitement for the upcoming season. Showing off the program to potential recruits is most definitely another component and one the Patriots focused on Friday night at the Patriot Center.
At least seven prospects attended the festivities on the Fairfax campus, a source familiar with the proceedings told CSNwashington.com.
Members of the 2014 class included guards Evan Taylor (Paul VI), John Crosby (Baltimore Polytechnic), 6-foot-4 Omari George (Baltimore/City College High), and New Jersey products Abdul Lewis and Ishmael Sanogo.
Middleburg Academy (Va.) small forward Delonte Jones and teammate Brandon Alston , a 6-foot-4 guard from Vienna, represented the 2015 class.
Definitively linking players to a specific program two and three years away is largely unwise, but Patriots coach Paul Hewitt continues his aggressive pursuit of talent in and outside the DMV. Recent commitments include incoming freshman guard and All-Met Player of the Year Patrick Holloway (Paul VI) and Jalen Jenkins, a 6-foot-6 power forward from the Bronx (NY).
The 6-foot-3 Taylor, who is reportedly also considering West Virginia and Wake Forest, is described by ESPN's college basketball recruiting site as "a skilled and smart point guard with excellent size and length. His passing and ability to make open shots allows him to positively affect the game."
Taylor ranks 24th at his position among members of the 2014 class per ESPN, five slots ahead of the 6-foot-2 Crosby.
Virginia Tech, Nebraska and Drexel are other schools in the hunt for George, according to Rivals.com.
The 6-foot-7 Lewis and Sanogo, a 6-foot-5 combo forward, both played last season for East Side (N.J.).