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EYBL L.A. - Friday Matchup to Watch: Mac Irvin Fire vs. Oakland Soldiers

By D1 Circuit , 04/19/13, 1:45PM EDT


The EYBL season gets a kick start with a prime matchup between Chicago’s Mac Irvin Fire and the defending Peach Jam Champion Oakland Soldiers

This game is loaded with high-major talent and will likely be the biggest draw among top-level college coaches. Mac Irvin is led by unanimous No. 1 2014 prospect Jahlil Okafor. Standing 6-foot-10 and weighing in at 280 pounds, Okafor is tremendously talented on both ends of the floor and has been said to be the most polished high school big-man prospect since Tim Duncan. 

Okafor teams up with fellow Chicago native and 2014 prospect PF Cliff Alexander (ESPN, No. 8). The young big man flashed his potential as a defensive stopper in two high school matchups this season against Okafor. Blessed with an NBA-ready body at the ripe age of 18, the 6-foot-9 Alexander will look to hone his offensive skills in his first year in the EYBL.

The Soldiers lost quite a bit of talent from last year, however they were left in good hands. Their roster is highlighted by consensus 2015 No. 1 prospect PF Ivan Rabb

Like any No. 1 recruit, Rabb is coveted by high-major programs and scouts will definitely be looking to see how Rabb performs against arguably the two best big men in the 2014 class. 

Making his job easier is 2014 SF Stanley Johnson (ESPN, No. 15). The 6-6 swingman is a proven commodity in the EYBL, looking to improves on averages of 16 ppg and 7 rpg. He and Rabb will likely run the floor and hope to get the two Fire big men in early foul trouble.

Prediction: Mac Irvin in a back and forth affair

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