Another great turn-out for the Tennessee Prep Hoops Rankings and Exposure Showcase held annually at Carson Newman University. This year we featured over 100 players and 15+ college coaches in the house. An extra-special in speaker in Hollywood actor and basketball savant Cylk Cozart plus instruction from local college coaches.
Here I will sift through the evaluations turned by myself and several colleagues who helped me at the event. I will attempt to do a team a day until completion.
Jamaahl Williams (Morristown West) 2017
Touch, thick lead guard who showed himself very well at the event. A serious on-ball defender who communicates well with his teammates. He is strong with a low base that really helps him with his aggression on the defensive side of the floor. His outside shooting needs some serious mechanical tweaking. He will become a much more effective overall player if he can show the ability to score some from the perimeter. He leads by example, he hustles all over the court and as mentioned by every evaluation given to me, his defensive prowess makes him the kind of kid that coaches can count on.
Chase Ridenour (Knoxville Webb) 2018
Things are finally starting to click and its really fun to watch. "Relentless, never stops putting pressure on the defense" was one evaluators take on the rising junior guard. Chase has a high basketball IQ, always gives 100% effort and is a willing passer. He loves to take the ball to the rack and is creative in his conversions. His outside shot has improved a great deal and his confidence in said shot is evident with his willingness to use it as another weapon much more often. Solid footwork and his want to on defense will make him a coveted player in this class. He must remain cognizant of the fact that his forays to the hoop can also be a hindrance against smart help defenders and may cause some turnover trouble. So balance is the name of the game for young Chase.
Tre Jackson (Baylor) 2018
Improving player, "makes tons of plays" was one evaluation of the Chattanooga area rising junior guard. Not a big player but a very capable defender, uses his hands very well on defense. Active defender is what some may call him. Jackson can finish at the rack with either hand and has a quick release on his shot, along with a nice high arc and follow through. Tre will need to work on his decision making with the ball and become more engrossed in being that playmaker that leads his team. He has glimpses but consistent lead guard effort will enhance his chances of becoming a player at the next level.
Steele Albino (Gibbs) 2018
Large inside presence, yet a bit undersized, who has made massive strides in his game, as was evident in his play during the Fall League and at the showcase. Steele moves well for his large frame, he carves out space and has become much more efficient on offense, finishing plays inside with either hand and becoming more of a force on the boards. His footwork and lateral skills are areas of the game that need improvement. His hands are adequate, he doesn't always catch the post entry cleanly and thus results in more than his share of turnovers and misses due to not being positioned properly under the goal. He has emerging back to the basket skills and I think Steele is finally understanding the nuisances of the game and enjoying himself on the floor. Confidence can and will take you a long way my man.
Dante Harris (Alcoa) 2020
Smooth young lead guard who plays with a mature feel to his game. Outstanding first step, Harris is a good on-ball defender and plays with confidence and some swagger for a youngster who has yet to step on the floor for his first high school game. As his body gets stronger his offensive game can expand and he can finish through contact at the rim. He will need to incorporate his left hand into his game as well. Youngster plays with no fear, his outside shot is decent but will need to quicken his delivery as he plays against better athletes on the high school level. A competitor who will be someone we talk about for the next four seasons.
Tyler Maloney (Hancock County) 2019
Rising sophomore has a good feel for the game but like most of the kids in his age bracket he lacks the strength to complete the plays that he envisions. He plays hard and understands defensive rotation but again his lack of size and strength make things difficult for him. Maloney has a decent shot and as his body catches up he can increase his range and add some off the dribble stuff into his shot wheel. Coaches love a kid who can be a coach on the floor, his basketball savvy and understanding of the offense will make it hard to keep him off the floor at the prep level.
Jamie Calvo (Asheville Christian) 2018
Another small guard who really understands the nuisances of the game, he was seemingly in the right place all the time on both ends of the floor. He has a very nice lefty stroke and finds himself getting open shots as he knows how to find open scoring spots on the perimeter. His lack of size will come into play on the defensive side of the ball but his effort and determination will never be in question.
Kordell Kah (Bearden) 2019
This kid is a warrior. A winners mentality who will do whatever it takes to win. He can score with a solid outside stroke, his release will need to be sped up some, or he can put the ball on the deck and finish inside with contact. He is a monster on the glass despite being a bit undersized in the post. He gets garbage points, keeps possessions alive and is generally the kid who represents from the winning team. Isn't that really all that matters. Defensively he can guard any of the five positions within reason. Intangibles galore. Flat out winner adding skills with a hard nosed work ethic.