By LARRY VAUGHT
Coach Craig Brownson assumed based on the way twins Aaron and Andrew Harrison have played for Travis High School in Texas that they would be in line for postseason honors. However, even the coach has been impressed by the all-star invitations the two Kentucky signees have received.
They will play in the McDonald’s All-American Game in Chicago, Jordan Brand Classic in Brooklyn and Nike Hoop Summit in Portland.
“I just always assumed they would be McDonald’s All-Americans, but I never knew for sure,” said Brownson, who plans to be in Chicago with his wife for the April 3 game. “I knew they were on the nominee list. Actually, I think having twin brothers playing probably helps sell the games even more. It’s a no-brainer for media coverage, but they were also both very deserving for their fantastic seasons and careers. Hopefully, this is just the start of fantastic things for them.”
At the Nike Hoop Summit, they will play against a team of world all-star players.
“That was a heck of an honor. I didn’t know that much about the game, but once I found out I knew what a big deal that was,” Brownson said. “They did some summer stuff with Team USA last year and this is a huge honor for them and hopefully a step toward representing our country down the road in the Olympics.”
They will obviously be teammates the Nike Hoop Summit and will play on the same team in the McDonald’s All-American Game. However, they will be on opposite teams in the Jordan Brand Classic.
“I don’t know why they would put two players from the same house on different teams, but they did,” Brownson said. “They have played against each other in some camps, but that doesn’t happen very often.”
Brownson actually coached against his players in an all-star game held in conjunction with the 2012 Final Four and he found it odd the two didn’t play often together in that game. “They know each other so well, you want them playing together,” Brownson said.
Andrew Harrison’s play has been limited this season by a hamstring he pulled a few weeks after playing in the Marshall County Hoop Fest in Benton Nov. 30-Dec. 1.
“He missed a couple of games, came back, hurt it again. It has been a nagging injury,” Brownson said. “Aaron has had a great yar. He’s averaging bout 24 points a game. Andrew is finally as close to as healthy as he has been but it has been a hard year for him. Speed and power are so much of his game and it was tough for him not playing. He is such a competitor.
“And once he went down, defenses just loaded up on Aaron. It’s been a challenging year for both of them, but hopefully they have learned through adversity and this year will turn out to be a blessing for them at Kentucky because of what they have learned.”