Iolani's Derrick Low, who will be a senior in the fall, has drawn interest from some of the nation's top college basketball programs.

The Low Show

As Iolani's star guard takes his game
on the road to impress college
recruiters, his best bet is to leave
his unselfish style of play at home

Derrick Low knows what to expect at this week's Nike All-American basketball camp in Indianapolis.

He knows he'll be playing with and against some of the best high school players in the country. He knows the gym will be crammed with college coaches evaluating his potential at the next level.

He also knows the key to performing well in the camp is forgetting all of the above.

"You cannot worry about that or else you lose focus on what you're actually trying to do," Low said. "You're there to play your game and play the best that you can. You have to remember that you're not out there to impress anyone, you're out there to play your own game. That's what I'm trying to do."

Low, a 6-foot-1 guard, left today for the camp, which will run Saturday through next Thursday. Low will also play in the Adidas Big Time Tournament in Las Vegas with the Hawaii Raiders later in the month.

He's a veteran of the summer camp circuit, having played in the Nike camp last year and in the Big Time Tournament the last three years. But as he prepares for his senior year at Iolani, he knows the stakes are higher this time around.

"Knowing this is my last summer to showcase my skills, I think this is going to be a big summer for me," said Low, a two-time Star-Bulletin Mr. Basketball selection. "I feel I've prepared well for it and I feel I'll be ready."

The Nike camp will give Low another opportunity to display his skills for college coaches. But it's not as if he needs to beg for attention.

The period for coaches to personally contact recruits began this week and Low has already heard from schools such as Connecticut, Kansas, Pittsburgh, Utah, Oklahoma State and Washington State. He visited Utah in May and has met with Hawaii coaches.

Still, enhancing his position in the eyes of the coaches (who are not allowed to talk to players during the camp) will require Low to balance the team aspect of the competition while displaying his individual ability.

Iolani coach Mark Mugiishi said the unselfishness that helped Low lead the Raiders to the last two state championships worked against him at last year's Nike camp. But the experience should help him this year.

"You have to showcase your individual talents, but you also have to show that you can play with other kids," Mugiishi said. "The kids that have more experience at it know how to do things that show both sides.

"Last year he was a little too timid. He's such a great team player and that's what made him such a valuable player. He took that to the showcase camp, where everybody's ball-hogging, so he might have taken two shots in a whole game. It's one of those places where if you give the ball up, you're not going to get it back."

As far as the recruiting game goes, Low has four more visits available to him as a senior and he's planning on signing during the early-signing period in November rather than waiting for the spring to make a decision.

"I think he has a good perspective and he's keeping an open mind," Mugiishi said. "It's going to be hard to make a decision down the road. It would be hard for anyone, and when you're 17 years old, it makes it that much harder to make a decision. But I think he'll weigh all his options."

Low has spent the early part of his summer playing in the NCAA Summer League, along with former Hawaii point guard Mark Campbell and former Iolani teammate Bobby Nash, who is on his way to UH in the fall.

Low said they haven't pressured him to join the Rainbow program, instead encouraging him to make his own choice.

"I'm sure they would want me to go to UH, but they're pretty nice about it," Low said. "They say wherever I go, make sure it's a good college."


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