Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Green Excels in High School Varsity Game

Michael Green
According to Middle School Hoops, South Carolina's Michael Green (5'11/SG/2019) recently knocked down 7 treys (33 points) in a high school varsity game. Many know Green as "the shooter" for Keyford Langley's Team CP3 squad that dominated the NYBL for 2 years.  Green has always been known as a knock down shooter that stretches the defense with his ability to score from beyond the arc, but his play last season reflected growth in his game that included the ability to put the ball on the floor and get to the rack.  For 2 seasons, Green was one of the best 3-point shooters in the NYBL.  In addition, at the NYBL All-star Weekend 2 years ago, Green shot his way to MVP honors.  Like several other notables (i.e., Tyger Campbell & Marquise Walker), Green has the skill and ability to play high school level basketball as an 8th grader.  In terms of his national ranking, the NYBL has him ranked 41st overall, and as the 11th best shooting guard in his class.  From what we can tell from this point, Green's talent will translate nicely at the next level.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Adidas Midwest Elite Camp – 2014 – Top Performers – Based on Skills Session, 1-on-1, 3-on-3, and 5-on-5

Below is a post event report highlighting some of the top players at the Adidas Midwest Elite Camp held in Cleveland, Ohio Last week.

Class of 2019 – Alphabetical Order

Mike Bekelja: Solon Middle school, fundamentally sound point guard with excellent
court vision. Shoots the ball very well.

CJ Charleston: St. Rita, an explosive athlete offensively. Is a defensive playmaker, plays with high energy around the basket. Tremendous athlete, and definitely a player to watch.

Ryan Cunningham: Middleburg Heights Junior High, good outside shooter with above average ball handling skills.

Demetrius Evans: Middleburg Heights Junior High, an explosive athlete that rebounds well for his size, an efficient scorer from 15ft in.

Kenny Ganley: Brecksville Middle School, long athletic player with great outside touch. Also finishes around the rim with consistence. Great feel for the game and a very high basketball IQ.

Robert Gray: Memorial School, great one on one player with excellent scoring ability. He can penetrate on the best competition.

Jiovanni Hutchingson: Middleburg Heights Junior High, a long athletic forward with a good mid-range game.

Shubh Khandhadia: St. Margret of York, great all around game with nice work ethic. Will be one of the players to watch in the future.

Greg McGee: Liberty Middle School, provides inside scoring along with being a skilled defender. Is a hustler that does the dirty work.

Devin Myers: Highland Middle School, finishes well around the rim with both hands with a soft touch. Can rebound the ball and has an above average jump shot.

Class of 2020 – Alphabetical Order

Andy Barba: Gilmore Academy, solid shooter with nice range. Gets to the rim with
ease. Was constantly getting deflections with his length.

Brad Colbert: Loveland Middle School, Good defender with great lateral quickness. Can shoot the ball up to 17ft, one of the hardest working kids at the camp.

Montorie Foster Jr.: St. Stanclaus, Crazy quickness with excellent ball handling skills. Unstoppable at getting to the basket. Has a nice shot as well.

Grant Huffman: Harmon Middle School, all around great basketball player. Exceptional ball handling skills, can take you both ways off the dribble. Sneaky and athletic guard with nice touch around the rim. One of the top 20 kids in the state, and the best 2020 player at the camp.

Tevin Jackson: Urban Middle School, short spark plug guard with excellent floor vision. Makes up with his lack of size with hard defensive play. Very intelligent point guard who can handle pressure.

Isaiah Jones: Chamberlin Middle School, athletic wing. Liked his game the more we saw of him.

Quentin Richardson: Milkovich Middle School, quick point guard with nice handles, great floor vision and able to pass with both hands. Can hit the set shot from long range.

Maison Ross: Stow Kimpton Middle School: Long wing who showed sound fundamentals in skills and played tremendously hard the entire day.

Nathan Snipes: long athletic forward who can shoot it from 15ft in. Tremendous upside could be one of the top 7th graders in the state. Has a great feel around the basket.

Josh Wanton: Chamberlin Twinsburg Middle School, Athletic lefty point guard who rebounds extremely well for his size. Nice ball handling skills with killer crossover.

Class of 2021 – In Alphabetical Order

Colin Albert: Woodbury Elementary, very athletic, exciting player to watch. Liked
his game more as he progressed from 3-on-3 into 5-on-5.

Justin Garrett: Woodbury Elementary handles the ball like a yo-yo with offensive play making skills to match.

Jaden Hameed: Lee Eaton Middle School, another long, athletic guard. Highly skilled player who along with Wilson, was at the top of their class at this event.

Sirr Hughs: Woodbury Elementary, great all around player with ball handling skills like Kyrie Irving. Nice athlete can finish with either hand.

Drew Lipowski: Kinsner Elementary, good point guard with straight-line quickness, has the ability get by most guards. Nice jumper with range up to 17ft.

Demari Martin: Pleasant Run Elementary, Another all around fantastic guard with great ball handling skills. Nice change of speed while getting to the rim. Solid shooter from 3 point line in.

Stephan Stanic: Hillside Middle School, big, crafty lefty who is utilizing his size well. Rebounds the ball and runs the floor. Finishes strong with his left hand.

Seth Wilson: Elyria, long, well-built, athletic guard. One of the top players in the camp at any age level. One of the top 5 players in the country for his class. Wilson can do it all, and had no problem scoring at will playing with players one and two years older at this event. An elite player and someone to watch. Has been since the 3rd grade, and he continues to work and improve.

Class of 2022- In Alphabetical Order

Rhece Deboard: Russel Elementary, high-energy player with lock down defense.
Has great floor vision for a kid his age.

Devin Johnson: Berea Midpark, nice player with exceptional ball handling skills. Gets to the basket easily, finishes strong with right hand.

Nathan Kuczmarski: St. Michaels, good player with overall skills to match. 

Mike Lipowski: Kinsner, Hard nose guard that plays the game with a heart like a
lion, lack of height does not interfere with his game.

Jack Wistrcill: Copley Fairlawn Middle School, Has a good all around game. Scores points in bunches. 

Highlight Video

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Ohio Represented in National Rankings

Seth Wilson, Meechie Johnson & Travonne Jackson
According to Mike Melton and Basketball Spotlight, the state of Ohio has 3 players talented enough to make their list of the top 35 players in the nation in the class of 2021 (6th grade). Seth Wilson (5’8 WF), Meechie Johnson (5’7/PG) and Travonne Jackson (5’4/SG) are all represented in Melton’s rankings.  Wilson leads the way at #4, while Johnson checks in #21 and Jackson slides in at #25.  For Ohio basketball youth basketball fans there is little surprise that these 3 players are being recognized nationally. All three players have logged in standout performances at prior Buckeye Prep Elite Showcases and the national scouts have taken notice.  When Melton expands his list to 50 in April look for more Buckeyes to be recognized.  I would expect Noah Peeples (5’8/PF) to crack that list. If we are talking a top 100, there are a few more kids who are flying under the radar, but are talented enough to make a list.  We will keep you updated.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

DC Premier Upgrades for 2015 NYBL Season

DC Primer 2019
As most savvy youth basketball fans well know, the DMV (DC, Maryland, Virginia) area is loaded with elite basketball talent.  Obviously, where you find elite individual talent, you also find elite teams. Arguably the top 2019 team in the area is the Under Armour-sponsored D.C. Premiere (DCP). Although they flew a bit under the national radar this past season, with key returning players, plus the acquisition of some nice pieces, Coach John Perry is preparing his squad to win a NYBL National Championship. 

With little fan fair, DCP enjoyed decent success in 2014 with a big win at Boo Williams’ Nike Elite Tourney, and their AAU Regional title in April.  In addition, DCP demonstrated their potential last year at the King James Shooting Star Classic where they took a loaded All-Ohio Red team right down to the wire before allowing a close game to slip away late in the quarterfinals (39-45 final).  After their 9th place finish at the AAU Nationals this summer (defeated Texas Express Elite 53-50) it was clear DCP would be a team to be reckoned with going forward.  Most recently, DCP went undefeated in the Largo High School JV League playing up against older kids. During there run to the champioship, they took down a very competitive Team Takeover.

Makhi Mitchell, Marvin Price, Makhel Mitchell, Christian DePollar & Sharif Kenny
Fast forward to 2015 and DC Primer’s roster will include 6 players who are ranked among  the NYBL’s Top 100 payer rankings. DCP will again be anchored by twin towers Mekhi (6’7/WF/MD), and Mikhel Mitchell (6’7/C/MD). The Mitchell twins are a dynamic duo that will give DCP one of the biggest frontcourts in the class. Key returnees for DCP include: Casey Morsell (5’11/SG/MD), Tiger Simms (6’2/WF/MD), Evan Buckley (5’10/SG/VA), Anwar Gill 6'2/WF/DC), Preston Bacon (5'10/PG/VA) and Mike Sumner Jr. (5'9/PG/MD/2020)New to the team this upcoming season will be Marvin Price (6’4/WF/MD) and Christian DePollar (6’4/WF/MD). In terms of Sherif Kinney, according to Coach Perry, he (Kenny) will float between both the 2018 and 2019 teams. We had the opportunity watch DePollar, Price and Kenny this season and we were very impressed with their talent. 

As currently constructed, DC Premier is legitimately among the top 3-4 teams in the nation in 2019, and has a great opportunity at a NYBL National Championship.  Having been exposed to the NYBL late last season, Coach Perry is looking forward to his team participating in the elite league. "Every weekend we expect to face tough battles," said Perry.  "We will have to bring our A game every week. All those teams [in the NYBL] finished high at the [AAU] Nationals last year.  The league made them battled tested," continued Perry. Not only was Perry impressed with the competition the NYBL had to offer, he also recognized the camaraderie and relationships between the players, parents and coaches. "It was like a big family,"  offered Perry.  "The kids and teams were very close knit.  That's what I want for my kids," Perry said. The addition of DC Premier to an already competitive league will create some great match-ups and some very compelling games. Can't wait!

Monday, November 10, 2014

Three Buckeyes Make National 2022 List

Sonny Johnson Jr, Sean Jones & Derrick James
They are only 5th graders, but already, Sonny Johnson Jr, Sean Jones and Derrick James are recognized nationally for their talents.  Recently, released their list of the top 55 players in the class of 2022 and all 3 players made the cut.  Johnson was the highest ranked Ohio player at #19, while Jones was ranked #24th and James is considered the 31st best player in the class.  Whether you believe in rankings or not, there is no doubt that these three players have enormous talent and bright futures. Having watched these kids play on numerous occasions, we believe they are the top kids in Ohio and are more than deserving their national rankings.

Johnson is new to the class, and his standout performance at the recent Buckeye Prep Elite Showcase formally announced his arrival to the class of 2022.  Johnson dominated the competition on his way to all-star and Top 5 honors.  Highly skilled with a high basketball IQ best describes Johnson's game right now. An elite handle and ability to break down the defense are his calling cards.  Jones enjoyed similar success at the showcase in September where he also made the all-star team and was selected among the Top 5.  In reality, all 3 of these guards possess similar attributes. The all have elite handles, are smart, and are always in attack mode.  When we release our 2022 "Watch List" in a few weeks all 3 of these players will be represented as potential top 10 players.  Congratulations to all 3 players for representing the Buckeye State!

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Johnson Belongs Among the Best in 2019

Evan Johnson
In terms elite of 2019 point guards, guys like Jeremiah Francis, Tyger Campbell, Marquis Walker and Keyshaun Langley are household names already.  However, despite putting up gaudy numbers in the competitive NYBL last year with the then Carolina Chaos, Evan Johnson (5’6/PG/NC) still has not garnered the respect and attention his game deserves. The Durham, North Carolina product is one of the most dynamic and skilled floor generals in the class, and has proven on numerous occasions he has the ability to put big numbers on the scoreboard (dropped 30 pts on Butler Elite in session # 3 of the NYBL) or create easy scoring opportunities for his teammates. Johnson is a wizard with the rock and has little difficulty getting by defenders for a score or dish.  He’s diminutive, put his quickness and elite handle allow him to avoid the double teams and traps. Johnson has a lot of tricks in his bag, and does most of his damage getting to the rack (see video).

He lit up the NYBL on his way to an NYBL Top 20 all-star game selection.  In addition, Johnson was selected to the prestigious NYBL Fabulous 50 team, is currently ranked 67th overall and is considered the 12th best PG in the nation according to the NYBL's national rankings. Johnson also  impressed a lot of people with his recent standout performance at the Buckeye Prep Elite Showcase in September, where he was pared with 6’10 Balsa Koprivicia. At the vent, Johnson proved that he was willing and able to get the big man the ball in scoring position (see video), which is always a sign of an elite PG. 

Johnson plays his middle school ball with Durham's RTA Academy, and already this year he's making a big impact  In fact, in a recent game, Johnson went for 27 points, 14 assists and 11 steals in only 3 quarters of actions. Based on his early sicces, Johnson is poised to have a huge year. You can catch Johnson and his Team Loaded squad in action when season 3 of the NYBL tips off in March.  You may not know his name right now, but Evan Johnson could take his place among the elite guards in the class very soon!