Capital All-Stars Coach Red Jenkins promises a nonstop running game tonight when his local players meet a taller U.S. All-Star team in the 10th annual Capital Classic at Capital Centre at 8 p.m.
"We plan to get 110 points on the board, so the U.S. team had better be able to run," said Jenkins, who coaches at W.T. Woodson. "We have speed and shooters and plan to put it up every 10 seconds . . . maybe every 12 seconds. This is going to be an offensive show, a fun game for the spectators. We might not win, but we're going to run like mad for four quarters."
With only three players 6-foot-7 or taller, Jenkins is ready to concede the inside game to the visitors, who have seven players at least that height.
"Michael Graham (6-9, Spingarn) will have to do a lot of work on the boards," Jenkins said. "He hurt his ankle the first day of practice and without him, we might be in trouble."
Among the inside players for the U.S. team are 6-11 Barry Sumpter of Lovejoy, Ill. (heading for Louisville), 6-11 Joe Wolf of Kohler, Wis. (Marquette or North Carolina), 6-9 Mike Smith of Hacienda Heights, Calif., (Brigham Young) and 6-8 Tom Sheehey of Rochester, N.Y. (Boston College, Virginia or UCLA). Each averaged more than 27 points per game this season, is a good rebounder and is mobile. Winston Bennett, a 6-7 leaper from Louisville, can play inside or outside.
A running game doesn't worry these 11 all-Americas.
"We prefer a running game," said Bennett, who, like 6-3 point guard James Blackmon of Marion, Ind., has committed to Kentucky. "We have guys who can get up and down the floor, too."
"Many of us have played together before in summer camps, so we have a pretty good idea of what some of us can do," Blackmon said. "If we work hard together, we can put on a show too."
None of the players on either team mentioned the word defense.
The U.S. team also has the talent to reach the 100-point mark. In addition to the high-scoring inside players, the U.S. team has Buffalo's 5-11 Curtis Aiken (Kansas), who averaged 39.9 points per game, 6-5 Keith Gatlin (25 points), who will attend Maryland, and 6-7 Mark Cline (30.1 points) of Williamson, W. Va., who will attend West Virginia or Wake Forest.
The other U.S. players are 6-7 Daryl Thomas of Westchester, Ill., (Indiana) and 6-3 Corey Gaines of Playa del Rey, Calif. (UCLA). Kenny Smith of Jamaica, N.Y., was selected but is injured.
If the local players are able to run, 5-3 Tyrone Bogues of Baltimore Dunbar (Wake Forest), 6-0 Tommy Amaker of W.T. Woodson (Duke), 6-2 Lyndon DeBellotte of Cardozo and 6-3 Rodney Rice of St. John's should have a productive evening.
For additional scoring, Jenkins can turn to several swing players, including 6-4 Pat Witting of W.T. Woodson, 6-4 Gerald Jackson of Flint Hill (Minnesota), 6-5 Bernard Day of H.D. Woodson and 6-1 Frank Ross of Potomac, Md. (American). Graham, 6-6 Bernard Campbell of Dunbar, 6-7 Bennie Bolton of De Matha, 6-6 Brian Vaughan of T.C. Williams and an at-large selection, 6-8 Terry Long of Hermitage, Va., are physical players who are comfortable with a running game. Long also has committed to Maryland.
"We know they have a lot of big people, but we think we can beat them down the floor," said Graham. "I'm the only true center on my team, but this is my chance to prove myself to the whole city. I had an up-and-down year and this is a good chance to play against the best competition."
For this game, each quarter is extended to 12 minutes and teams must play man-to-man defense, with pressing allowed only in the final five minutes. A player fouls out with his sixth foul, not fifth, and bonus free-throw shooting starts with a team's 10th foul of the half.
A preliminary game matching the Suburban All-Stars against the District All-Stars starts at 6 p.m. Wootton's Stan Wolk, Einstein's Bill Swick and B-CC's Bill Wright will coach the Suburban team and H.D. Woodson's Rudy Peters and Gaithersburg's Ed Davis will coach the District team.