Tidyman attends showcase camp

Sonja Karp

Photo by Sonja Karp/NLJ

Dylon Tidyman was the second leading scorer for the Newcastle High School Dogies last season and got the opportunity to show his stuff for college coaches at an NCAA certified recruitment showcase basketball camp in Aurora, Colo., at the end of June. 

Sonja Karp

NLJ Sports Reporter


Dylon Tidyman is using the offseason to improve his opportunity to play post-secondary basketball. In addition to playing in the weekly Raider League in Rapid City with his Newcastle team, the incoming senior is also playing AAU basketball with the Sacred Hoops organization in South Dakota. 

The team camps provide the opportunity to hone and improve individual skills, and Tidyman was also given an exclusive opportunity to attend an NCAA certified recruiting showcase camp in Aurora, Colo., on June 28-30.

The Centennial State Grandstand is one of 10 live showcase camps held across the country where coaches from Division I colleges to junior colleges attend to see potential recruits in action.

Tidyman joined 173 other high school players from California, Colorado, Florida, Maryland, New Mexico, Texas and Wyoming who gathered at Cherokee Trail High School in Aurora over the weekend in order to show what they could do to the 50 college coaches in attendance.

The camp is by invitation only, and Tidyman explained that head coach Allen Von Eye had nominated him for a spot, and that he was confirmed by a Wyoming High School Activities Association panel who looked at his stats and basketball performance thus far in his career.

“We’ve sent guys to similar recruiting opps in previous years, but this was the first one that was organized by state athletic associations including the WHSAA,” Von Eye began. “That really piqued my interest, and I thought it might be a positive way for Dylon to get some good exposure and not just the semi-typical service that preys on kids and their families with promises to help them get recruited.”

Day one of the camp, Tidyman and his campmates were put through a series of drills to test each player on his skills and athleticism and to get a baseline idea of their potential talent.

“We were timed on our three-quarter court sprint, we were tested for hang time on our jumps, they timed us on a shuffle around the lane, looked at our wingspan and how big our hands were. Then we did a round of shooting at mid-range and behind the arc.”

After the testing, the athletes attended a presentation where they learned the ins and outs of the recruiting process and how to utilize the showcase to the fullest.

“They talked about how we should be careful at these camps to not try to do things we don’t usually do, and that we should just play our own game,” Tidyman explained. “They also told us that we should always hold ourselves to a higher standard, and that even though we think no one is looking, the coaches are always watching.”

Not only were the college coaches watching the individual’s basketball talent, but they were also looking at how the players reacted and interacted with their coaches, their teammates and the opposing players. 

On days two and three, the players were divided into relatively evenly matched teams and played games in a round robin format. 

“Some teams had 10 or 11 kids so they could only play half the game,” Tidyman began. “My team only had six on the second day, so we all got to play most of the time so I was lucky.”

Tidyman felt that he played pretty well during the two
days of competition, and reflected that he was both pleased and a little disappointed with the quality of ball that was played overall.

“It was good playing with guys of that caliber because you didn’t have to worry about kids not knowing how to play basketball,” However, it was a little annoying at times because there were quite a few players who you could tell were all about themselves. They were ball-hogs and were trying to show off what they could to the coaches I think.” 

“There was so much trying to create for yourself that it wasn’t very good basketball,” he frowned. “Sometimes there would be three or four trips in a row where a guy would just dribble down and shoot a three. No one wants to see that.”

The point of the camp was to showcase to prospective collegiate coaches and to that end, Tidyman spoke to a few including the coach from Colorado Christian in Denver. They are part of the RMAC so play Black Hills State University among others.

“I thought the camp was a great opportunity, and it gave kids around here a way better chance to be recognized,” he nodded. “If we had more things like this that are affiliated by the high schools, it would give more players the opportunity to be seen and recruited.” 

Tidyman has already started to contact schools. He thinks Colorado Christian would be a great opportunity, but is still holding out to see if other opportunities arise.


News Letter Journal

News Letter Journal
14 W. Main St.
P.O. Box 40
Newcastle, WY 82701
Ph: (307) 746-2777
Fax: (307) 746-2660

Email Us