Finally we begin our evaluations from the annual Tennessee Prep Hoops Carson Newman Showcase. This is a lengthy process with evaluations from myself and five college coaches who's input I sought when putting these thoughts and suggestions together.
- Will Stevens (Science Hill) 5'9 PG 2019
Small guard with a really good feel for the game. "He shows good composure, he seemingly makes good decisions, he shoots the ball adequately but he gets lost during possessions, consistency will make a huge difference in his overall production down the road. He has a tendency to try and do too much instead of letting the action take its course, aggressive is fine but over aggressive causes turnovers, coaches hate turnovers. He will need to get stronger obviously, he likes to dribble the ball to excess but he competes, he understands how to play with tempo and he can score the ball in a variety of methods. He is a decent defender and once he puts it all together with the consistency factor, we got ourselves a nice player for the right level.
- Dominique Oggs (Sweetwater) 6'2 WF 2019
"Develop a skill set commensurate with the natural gifts that he has and we are talking about a player who will get looks at most every level", was one glaring evaluation of this talented rising junior from East Tennessee. He is long, he is mucho athletic, he likes to rebound but he relies on his athleticism for everything. "He has a deer in the headlights look at times but then he glides to the bucket and soars above everyone for a tricky rebound", says one observation. He would like to be a wing but his skill set and shooting will need to increase drastically. He has the length, quickness and once-again athletic prowess to be a devastating defender, if he really wishes to be. Improving his skill set, working on his ball-handling, his shooting and overall basketball skills will certainly benefit him as he moves towards becoming a recruit able athlete for the next level.
- Caleb Tripp (Powell) 6'2 WF 2018
Productive kid who appears to be more at home in the paint despite his lack of size. He is a creative scorer who uses his body for easy chances inside, he is a system kid who can be very effective when size is taken out of the equation. He is smart, he goes hard for rebounds and demands touches when he is in rhythm. His size dictates guard or wing for the next level. He will need to work on his skill set including ball-handling, shooting from the perimeter and defending his position as he makes the difficult transition to the perimeter. Excellent high school player who has an unlimited motor and as aforementioned is a productive scorer and stat producer. His production should give him the chance to make his way onto someone's radar for a next level opportunity.
- Neil Dickey (McCallie) 6'5 WF/PF 2019
Projected inside player who seemingly loves life on the perimeter. He has an decent stroke with an ultra slow release but effective none the less. He has good size and length and is very productive when he does venture inside the paint. He has an array of head fakes, post moves and finishes that make him very productive on the interior. He pursues the ball, gets rebounds out of his area ad has the ability to finish with either hand inside. He will need to work on his shot mechanics and ball skills if he is to become what he seeks and that is a perimeter contributor. "This kid really grows on you, he wishes to be a guard but he is so effective inside, he is crafty, smart, has scoring ability from either hand, he understands positioning and he goes hard", seemingly sums up what everyone thought about this productive rising junior from Chattanooga.
- Hunter Holt (Hancock County) 5'9 PG 2019
Small guard who struggled with the athleticism and strength of some but played hard and with effort throughout the day. He really needs to work on his body, he has basketball IQ but his lack of strength and size make it difficult to complete plays and tasks that his mind obviously sees. He has some quickness and likes to do most of his damage on the baseline. He has no confidence in his shot which is an area where he will really need to work on with his size. He should be a productive competitor in his region and district once he gains confidence in his skill level. The shot was not that bad he just seemed reluctant to pull when he was open, possibly the camp setting caused some of this distress. He has a solid basketball mind and once he realizes his body and strength are the keys to making a jump in production, he will have a productive season.
- Joshua LeCroy (Carter) 5'5 PG 2018
Diminutive lead guard who plays very hard, very vocal, sees the floor and really seems to enjoy being on the floor. His size will of course be a hindrance but he does everything he can to overcome this with his effort and desire. "Good help defender and he guards the ball with passion, he is small but he is stout and unafraid", was one honest description of the rising senior from Knoxville. He has a tendency to play too fast and is inconsistent with his decision making at times, he lacks explosion to get by player which will hurt him at his size. He shoots the ball with confidence and he is a competitor. He is a good team player who everyone, even in the short camp setting, loves to play with. Keep fighting young man, your spirit is contagious and your passion is compelling.
- Mason Wyatt (Cumberland County) 6'1 WF 2020
Young guard who plays hard but lacks the physical attributes to make the plays that he sees in his mind. He is limited offensively, he lacks quickness but has some length. "He is actually a decent defender for a kid who lacks quickness and athleticism", he bodies up and he uses his angles to keep his defender at bay", was a glaring assessment of the kids will to guard. He appears to have some basketball IQ but until his body catches up with his mind, it will be difficult for him to be productive. As we mentioned already the kid plays hard and he seemingly loves to be on the floor, these are the kids who make massive strides in production and become solid players down the road, so hang on your time is coming.
- Kaleb Bunton (Walker Valley) 6'0 PG 2021
I always make a conscious effort of keeping in mind that some of these kids at this juncture have yet to even suit up for their first high school game. Young guard who is still learning his way around the game, he is weak and often appeared out of his element but he showed a more than adequate shooting touch. "Physically overwhelmed, painfully young but he remained engaged in what was going on in the game, he shot the ball with confidence, patience and getting in the gym will be his best friends in the years to come", was a poignant and accurate depiction of the state of the young mans game.
- Braden Ilic (Morristown East) 6'4 PF 2021
"Poised youngster with solid skills, he has decent footwork for his age bracket and showed some offensive production, I like his potential", was the first of every positive assessment for this rising freshman prospect from Morristown. His body is weak physically but he seems to understand how to play, he is active on the glass, he blocks shots and he has a feel for the offensive side of the floor. He has good length and plays to his strengths. "Potential is written all over this kid, he has good size and isn't afraid to stick his nose into the action, he shoots the ball well, he rebounds and he seems to get it", another fine evaluation for this determined youngster. Once his strength catches up with his skill level we will have a very nice prospect on our hands, mark it down you heard it hear first.