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Mayor’s Notebook: Allen Academy’s Jason Williams Primed for Big Year

28 Aug

jasonwilliamsA 2016 point guard many schools are looking over is Jason Williams from Detroit Allen Academy.  Williams stands a mere 5’10,” but blessed with superb speed, agility, and athleticism for a sub six-foot guard.  Jason uses a quick first-step to get past defenders and downhill for the rim with either hand.  Early in his career, Jason struggled with tunnel vision.  Playing too fast, out of control, and forcing errant shots.

By the middle of his junior year, Williams took his game to the next level.  He developed into a leader for a young Wildcat team at the point guard position.  He single-handedly carrying the team during stretches throughout the year, dropped three 40 point games, two back-to-back, and concluded the year leading Allen Academy with a 27 points-per-game and 7 assists-per-game average.

Jason spent the July live evaluation period with 17U 1Nation, alongside consensus number one 2016 prospect Josh Jackson.  Following particularly strong performances at the Under Armour Invitational and Las Vegas Fab 48, Williams caught the eye of college coaches.  Arkansas State and North Carolina A&T offered on spot in Vegas, East Tennessee State a few weeks later, as well as a Ferris State offer Williams already held.   He plans to visit two campuses in September.

Expectations will be high for Williams his senior campaign.  He has already scored more than 1,000 points in his career and dished-out more than 300 assists.  But there is one thing Jason wants more than individual numbers, a state championship.  Allen Academy opens the year as a top five team in Class C with a legitimate opportunity to finish their season at the Breslin Center.  With Williams, 6’7″ senior forward Danny Pippen, and a young nucleus of guards, Coach Craig Covington will have plenty of options at his disposal this upcoming winter.  But Williams will be the “straw that stirs the drink” according to coach.

Contributed by Al Troia

Final Standouts From Fort Wayne

29 Jul

Cassius Winston 6’0″ point guard 17u The Family-

After an uncharacteristic Winston-esque performance throughout the tournament, Cassius saved his best for Sunday; 35 total points in the championship game.  It was too much Cassius for the Spiece Indy Heat and Florida State bound guard C.J. Walker to handle, as Winston was at the center of a Family second-half charge which put the Spiece team down.  Whatever Winston wanted he got, mid-range pull-ups, threes off the bounce, attacking the basket, Cassius could not be stopped.

Amauri Hardy 6’2″ off-guard 17u The Family- 

Big weekend for Amauri Hardy, who has played up one age level since April.  When Hardy keeps his game simple, he can be as good as any guard in Michigan’s ’17 class and the midwest.  When Amauri gets you on his hip, with a full-burst of speed going left, good luck.  Because he is going to finish strong at the basket and live at the free-throw line if he doesn’t.  When he rebounds the ball at a high-level which he did, Hardy was a one man fast-break repeatedly.  Already with a college level body and frame, if Hardy continues to work on his right hand a little more and finds a reliable perimeter jumper, Amauri will have a big season for Southfield.

Tre Harvey 5’10” off-guard 15u Michigan Warriors-

Harvey put on a show in each Warrior game on championship Sunday, raining in three after three in the two games.  His highest scoring game was 25, and multiple three-pointers in the process.  Tre’s form is a bit of wind-up and unorthodox, but the end result cannot be argued when he was left open.  Harvey is a guard that will be gradually progressed through the ranks this upcoming varsity season at West Bloomfield on both ends.  And next Spring/Summer Tre will shine.

Kaevon Merriweather 6’1″ point guard 16u Michigan Warriors-

Physically does not look like a freshman.  Broad shoulders, power athlete, and fast, Merriweather is the next guard up at Romulus.  His best attribute right now is as a disrupter on defense.  He comes away with steals, tips, and deflections because he understands how to react against screens and picks, which become easy offense.  He’s still developing into a pure point guard and passer with reads and vision, but did show signs of growth in Fort Wayne.

Day Three Standouts for the 2015 GRBA Nationals

27 Jul

Elijah Collins 6’0″ off-guard The Family 15u-

Collins is known for defense.  With a strong build, high-major athleticism, and quickness, Eli is a lockdown perimeter defender guarding both guard positions, causing opponents to catch the ball in uncomfortable positions, and even one day on the tournament guarded a 6’8″ player as effectively he could due to awareness and positioning.  His offensive game has been a work in progress the past couple of months.  Collins attacked the basket aggressively and finished open-court lay-ups in transition.  Although he isn’t a point guard by definition with the ball in his hands routinely, he’s a point guard off-the ball.  Directing players where they are supposed to be and when he gets the ball it doesn’t become stagnant.

Romeo Weems 6’4″ wing The Family 15u-

The Family brought up a few players that had just recently played at a national tournament in Florida; which Weems participated in.  Weems is a power wing in the making; big build, broad shoulders, nice frame.  But The Family played him more as a four on the weekend; and he was effective.  A true stat-sheet stuffer, Weems aside from scoring, blocked shots, rebounded, and came away with steals on the perimeter.  His greatest impact on one game was locking down a fellow 2019 that had absolutely destroyed other teams; not on Weems’ watch.  Romeo played very well of The Family’s talented guards; positioned himself well for dump-ins or backdoored his man to the basket.  Roemo’s offensive game should be one to watch this upcoming season at Country Day.

C.J. Wilson 5’10” point guard The Family 16u-

Wilson’s Twitter name might be Mr. PG, but his defense is rated R.  Wilson covers great amounts of ground for The Family due to lateral speed, agility, and quickness.  He has a knack for speeding the offense up and disrupting timing.  Ball-handlers cannot be lazy around him; it will be a turnover.  Wilson also showed signs of life on the offensive end.  He hit some three-point shots at times, and attacked gaps to the basket.

Logan Ryan 6’7″ forward Michigan Warriors 17u-

Logan finally put together one weekend that the Warriors, college coaches, and scouts had finally waited for.  He continuously made big-shot after big-shot on bracket play Saturday.  One game winning three with 26 seconds, and scoring key baskets down the stretch in on overtime victory for the Warriors. He’s not a back-to-the basket type player just yet, although he did show some signs of growth on that area, however, his 18-20 feet jump shot was nearly automatic on the weekend.  Either spotting-up or flashing to the middle of the court, it was hard to contest one of his shots.  He can also run the floor, and is solid passer as a forward.  The one glaring issue with Logan is his frame.  He has the length, but will need to add at least 25-40 pounds at the next level to continuously battle larger defenders on defense and for rebounds.

Riley Lewis 5’10” off-guard Triple-Threat 17u-

A flat out scorer from anywhere on the court.  Lewis is slithery and energetic with the ball, and can create his own shot off-the bounce.  Very good driver to the basket, uses first step and protects the ball well when in traffic.  Lewis is worth a look for small schools that want a 5’10” guard that easily finish a game with 30.

Daijon Parker 6’5″ forward Michigan Warriors 16u-

Daijon Parker is an unknown prospect from Westland John Glenn.  When Parker stays confident and aware, he can be very effective.  In one game he had 18 points, nine rebounds, and two blocks in a victory.  Parker showed a soft-touch on a 10-12 feet jumper, and even had a couple spins moves down low.  Not an exceptionally athlete or grinder by any measure, but uses body and frame to clear space for rebounds when in the paint.  If he continues to work hard and stay within himself, Daijon will no doubt have a big year for Glenn.

Mike Bruce 6’3″ off-guard Michigan Warriors 17u-

Mike Bruuuce as is said along the I-94 corridor.  Bruce has the desirable frame, length, and height colleges look for when evaluating guards.  Mike used to play point guard when he was younger, but currently plays more off the ball and that aspect of his game is still a work in progress.  When he gets into the paint, Bruce can score in the mid-range with runners, floaters, and pull-ups in the paint; although he does need to be careful on ball protection down amongst the trees.  Bruce will have one solid game, then an  o.k game the next outting.  If he puts the pieces together and realizes how much of a special talent he is, Mike will have a huge year for Ypsilanti.

East English’s Chris Rollins Commits To IPFW

29 Jun

DSC_00171Like coaches, point guards will be critiqued by wins and losses.  East English Village senior Chris Rollins is a winner.

Whether it be as a sophomore starter for Warren De La Salle, a junior transfer at EEVP, or through a successful travel ball career, Rollins will come out on top more times than not.

Now Rollins envisions winning games on the collegiate level, which will be as a Mastadon for Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW), despite not knowing the clear origin of the school’s mascot.

“I think it’s an extinct form of an elephant, and I know it’s symbolic of the State of Michigan.”

IPFW was the first school to extend interest towards Rollins during his recruiting process.  Chris displayed great loyalty to the Mastadon program committing before the July live evaluation period, with the possibility of receiving additional collegiate scholarships from other institutions.

“The school, and players, and coaches are really showing a lot of love (towards me),” Rollins said of his recruitment.  “Which is a major reason why I chose IPFW.”

Central Michigan, Western Michigan, and Northern Illinois were other suitors for Rollins’ services.  Chris is a mere 5’11,” not an ideal size for a division I caliber point guard.  However, Rollins compensates size for IQ, agility, speed, and instincts all lead guards must have.

“I feel as if I’m the most complete guard in the (Michigan’s 2016) class,” said Rollins.  “I think my game will translate well due to my quickness, and ability to score and make my teammates better.”

Before he can reach Fort Wayne, Rollins has unfinished business to settle in Michigan.  East English Village will be in their fourth year of existence his senior season, and the trophy cases are awfully empty.  Chris and four out of five returning starters plan on resolving that issue as the Bulldogs enter the 2015-2016 campaign a pre-season top ranked team.

“To be honest the goal for this season is to be a great team and ultimately win both city and states, and punish every team in our way.”

 

 

 

2015 Tom Izzo Shootout Recap

21 Jun

Each year, the Tom Izzo Shootout brings top teams from Michigan, Ohio, Illinois, and Indiana.  Through two days of action, here are a few players that stood out.  Ypsilanti defeated Dublin Jerome (OH) for the final.  The final four consisted of Detroit East English, Skyline, Dublin, and Ypsi.

Jaren Jackson Jr. 6’8″ 2017 Foward Park Tudor (IN)- Jackson, the son of long time NBA journeyman Jaren Jackson Sr., was given the center stage of attention by the Michigan State coaching staff, tracked in almost every game Park Tudor competed in, including every game on Sunday.  Jackson has a soft touch with his back to the basket with either hand, particularly his right, if the shot was within five feet it was pretty automatic.  He deflected multiple shots from the weak-side on defense, and with his long arms rebounded at a high-rate.  He’s not a jump-out of the gym player, or possesses superior strength yet, but it doesn’t seem he has formed any bad habits as a young big man.  Jackson will certainly reel in more high-major offers in addition to the ones he already has.

Foster Loyer 5’10” 2018 Point Guard Clarkston-  The rising sophomore class is guard-heavy, and Loyer seems to be at the top.  Even with a drastic change of faces compared to three months ago, Foster still played his style of play.  Which is with great pace, toughness, and awareness.  He is a two-end competitor.  Loyer will set-up teammates before he does himself, but when he takes an open shot, book it.  Although the team graduates a multitude of seniors, Loyer is one member of dangerous trio, 6’4″ returning swingman Tabin Throgmorton, and 6’3″ wing 2017 transfer Dylan Alderson via Davison.

Darian Owens-White 5’11’ 2017 Point Guard River Rouge- Darian, son of legendary Renaissance head coach Mark White, has seemed to inherent a strong sense of understanding for the game.  Owens-White is a pass-first point guard by nature, however, was a one-man wrecking crew for Rouge all weekend long, more often than not serving as the team’s leading scorer, finishing one game with over 3/4s of Rouge’s points.  Darian is a plus mid-range shooter, creating space off the bounce with either hand through various crossovers and step-backs.  Not overly flashy or quick, he just knows how to play the game.  On defense he is rarely found out of place, nor does he gamble.  Owens-White also had the trait of leadership all point guards need, he is the perfect leader for a young Rouge team moving forward.

Ronquavious Southward 5’10” 2017 Point Guard Saginaw- Qua lives by the three, and for him his perimeter jump shot was falling much like it has been during the Spring AAU circuit.  Southward has a smooth, fluid, and consistent release when he pulls the trigger.  Many of which came off the bounce situations, either a high pick-and-roll or pull-ups.  However, Southward has improved vastly on becoming a playmaker for others.  With re-addition of 6’7″ Algevon Eichelberger to “The High” and burly 6’4″ 2017 forward Henry Speight via Carrollton, Ronquavious will have plenty of weapons at his disposal this upcoming season.

Josh Long 6’5″ 2017 Forward Detroit Western- The Cowboys lose a significant amount size from their state championship team, and Long will have to fill that void.  A true workhorse in the paint, Josh will be intriguing to college coaches because of his proven interior dominance, even against larger, sought after bigs.  Built like a wing who happens to play power forward, Long compensates with above the rim quick bounce athleticism.   Defensively coaches will not have fear if he has to switch on pick-and-rolls because he has the feet to stay in front of ball-handlers, and with his length Josh is still capable of defending low-post opponents, to go along with rebounding at the same time.  Not a pure back to the basket of game offensively, but completes entry passes with power around the rim.  Has the potential to perhaps even play some on the wing as he looks comfortable handling the ball on occasion.

Karmari Newman 6’3″ 2016 Combo Guard East English- Newman has received various mid-major offers in the past month, and might be on the verge of higher suitors in coming weeks.  He’s always been a volume knock-down shooter, the question was what’s after that?  In a few games, Karmari took the reigns as the primary ball-handler and decision maker, showing nice vision, and even whipped a few nice passes to interior teammates.  If he continues to display this versatility to his game, Newman might double his offer status by August.

Corey Allen 6’2″ 2016 shooting guard Ypsilanti- Allen already has the physique of a college level guard, now it’s time to put the pieces together.  Corey does not shy away from taking shots, he has great range on his jump shots, and has developed into a quality shooter.  But he’s also starting to become a three-level scorer, he has great body control when attacking the basket, particularly in transition, in addition to some elbow jumpers.

Ryan Stevens 6’2″ 2016 point guard Lowell- Matt Beachler isn’t the only shooter for Lowell, the quarterback for the Red Arrow football team is also dangerous from beyond the arch.  In one game, Lowell made 11 three-pointers, and four or so were from Stevens, including three in less than a minute.  Very good decision maker off the pick-and roll, will get the ball where it needs to be.  Competes with a swagger and edge on both ends.  Small school lock for sure.

Micah Rosser 6’2″ 2016 combo guard East Kentwood- Very smooth and athletic off-guard, excels either scoring or creating in the open court.  Still an overall work in progress on the offensive side of the floor, but did hit some spot-up three pointers.   As he adds strength, Rosser could develop into a lock-down dual-guard defender.

AJ Jackson 6’7″ 2016 forward Detroit Renaissance- AJ isn’t just a space eater, he has skill to his game.  A division one football recruit, Jackson has stellar hands, footwork, and is deceptively quick off the floor.  With his soft-touch up to the three-point line, Jackson stretches out other bigs which opens driving lanes for Renaissance’s guards.  Good passer from the low-post as well, challenges shots without fouling.  Dual-sport star in the future?

Brandon Wade 6’1″ 2018 point guard Ann Arbor Skyline- Brandon continues to sky as one of the top 2018 point guards in the state.  He has such a high IQ and feel for the game at such a young age.  He is the epitome of finding a pass to shot ratio all lead guards much have.  Plays with passion, and is starting to add strength, speed, and athleticism to his game.

 

30 Of The State’s Top Unsigned Seniors As Of May 27th

27 May

With signing day in the past, it’s time to close the book on Michigan’s Class of 2015.  However, there are still some quality players left unsigned in the state. Players on this list would make great last-minute additions to Division I, II, III, Juco, or prep schools.

Xavier Cochran 6’5″ wing Ann Arbor Huron- Holds double-digit division one offers.  Only a matter of time before he commits.

Dave Wren 6’1″ guard Ann Arbor Huron- Had a lot of mouths to feed during the season, but can put the ball in the basket himself.  Quick, gracefully gets around the court, and above the rim finisher.  Thrives in transition either scoring or passing.

Darryl Smith 5’11” guard Detroit Renaissance- Smith was a key reason as to why the Phoenix went from a January disappointment to one of the hottest teams in the state towards the end of the year.  Improved consistency on jump shot, but his bread and butter has always been defense and ball-handling.  Two traits most college coaches look for.

Javon Pratt 6’0″ guard Saginaw- Can heat up in a hurry, especially from long-range.  Plays with a toughness which has become to be expected from a Saginaw Trojan.

Sherrod Motley-Dismuke 5’10” guard Ypsilanti Lincoln- Quality effective lead guard.  Won’t make the highlight reel play but won’t kill you either.  Good x-and-o type floor general.

Howard McInnis 5’10” guard Oak Park- Comes off the bench and heats up.  McInnis can easily finish games in three to five threes and 25 points.

Isaiah Green 6’7″ forward Southfield- Mobile and smart.  With his grades, schools should look at him solely based off academics.  On the court, he has a high motor, good feet, and a soft touch up to 15 feet.

DeShawn Brocks 5’9″ guard Westside Christian- Was Detroit’s best kept secret.  A 1,000 point scorer on 3 1/2 years of competition.  The lefty excels in space, and is very elusive.  Brocks will take two years of a junior college.

Anthony Qasawa 6’4″ guard North Farmington- Dead eye shooter, from three and mid-range.  Improving athleticism and ball-handling.

Charles Penn 6’6″ forward Dakota- Versatility and athleticism.  Can guard and play multiple positions on the floor, and play above the rim.

Taariq Jones 6’6″ forward Dakota- Brute force with a polished game.  Rebounds and does a lot of the intangibles needed to win games.

Josh Reynolds 6’4″ guard Plymouth- Ideal size and length for a college level two guard.  Will need to add strength, but possesses deep range and consistent form on perimeter jump shots.

Tim Shayoka 6’2″ guard Troy Athens- Missed a great deal of games due to an injury.  Plays tough on both ends of the court.  Type of kid coaches want on their team.

Elmelik Martin 5’10” guard Lake Orion- Quick, shifty, and elusive.  When he doesn’t turn the ball over, Martin can be fun the watch.  At his best, Martin’s ball-handling puts defenders on the floor.

Lance Lewis 6’3″ guard Milan- Was the glue that held Milan together the past two years for consecutive trips to the Breslin Center.  Does whats called upon him.  Defend, shoot, rebound.  Jack of all trades.

Jalin Gibson 6’7″ guard River Rouge- Has high-major athleticism, just not polished yet.  Good around the basket with either hand.  Quality defender, and has increased range on his jump shot the past few seasons.

Curtis Davison 6’0″ guard Grand Rapids Union- Throw the ball to Curt and he’ll get a bucket.  One of the best isolation players in the state.  Can shoot, slash, and finish at the basket.  Plays with same intensity on offense as he does on defense.

Mykel Tyson 6’6″ forward Consortium- Bully in the paint, won’t out-jump for rebounds, but will out-work you.  Nice back to the basket skill set as well.

Keyon Rainey 5’10” guard Consortium- Had his moments during the season.  Shifty ball-handler, good vision as a passer, just has to avoid turnovers and unforced errors.  Could develop into a quality defender with his quick hands and feet.

Demario Mack 6’5″ forward Detroit Community- Explosive vertical athlete.  Rebounds at a high-rate even though he is often shorter than his opponent.  Will make a small school very happy.

Kyrahl Hunt 5’10” guard Detroit Community– Quick first step with ball in his hands.  Not flashy, but knows how to play the game.  Was the emotional leader for Community this season.

Lance Clanton 5’7″ guard Ottawa Hills- Plays larger than size.  The lefty is a blur with the ball in hands.  Picks his spots well when to attack, and can catch fire from beyond the three-point line.

Tyreese Searles 6’2″ guard Cornerstone- High IQ guard that plays his role on a team.  Reliable ball-handler, and decision maker.  Can score as well.

Neshua Wise 6’4″ guard Flint Southwestern- Had a breakout senior season for the Knights.  Developed into a consistent perimeter threat with his shot.

Austin Sherell 6’6″ guard New Haven- Sherell will make his college very happy with his ability to play three positions on the floor, point, shooting and small forward.  His length and athleticism give him the ability to become a lockdown defender.

Dmonta Harris 6’4″ guard New Haven- Buckets.  Harris is a three-level scorer whose combination of size for the position and skill made him a consistent 20 per-game scorer.  College level body who doesn’t force the issue if not present.  Very patient and efficient on the offensive side of the floor.

Lavail Russell 5’10” guard Melvindale ABT- He had the ball in his hands a great deal during his high school career.  When he’s on he’s on.  Fearlessly drives the basket.

Nick Robak 6’0″ guard Waterford Our Lady- Above the rim finisher for a Class D athlete.  Can shoot, rebound, and play both guard positions.

Michael Williams 6’4″ forward Wyoming Godwin Heights- Undersized forward but with heart and a leaping ability that makes up for it.

Igli Pirgu 6’2″ guard Westside Christian- One of the school’s all time leader in three-pointers.  Quick release, thrives coming off screens.  Will take a Juco.

 

Walled Lake Western’s Jerald Booker to Concordia

13 May

image1Did you visit the campus? What did you like about it?

Yes I visited the campus.  I liked it because seemed peaceful and it wasn’t huge but it wasn’t small either which I like.

Did you meet the coaches? How do they plan to use you?

I only met the head coach once but he was down to earth and was honest which is very important.  They plan on using me as a combo guard and there will be minutes for me to come in and make an impact as a freshmen.

How would you describe yourself as a player?

I would describe myself as unselfish, dedicated, and hardworking player.  I try to make the smart decision every play.

How would you describe the recruiting process?

I waited so long because I didn’t find a right fit for me and my family until I came across Concordia.  Northwood, U of M Dearborn, Albion, Findlay University and Spring Arbor University were some schools recruiting me.  They were different because I didn’t feel comfortable and I didn’t feel like it was the right place for me.

How did this past season go for you? And what was your overall career like?

It was my best high school season it was fun. Our record was 21-2 which was a school best.  My overall high school experience has been great.  I have so many memories that I will cherish forever and a group of friends that I can truly call my family I loved all the ups and downs.  Our bond is unbreakable because of it.

What do you plan to study?

I plan on going into sports management.

Alabama Offers East Lansing Freshman Brandon Johns

9 May

B9317090312Z.1_20150423113347_000_GVKAJAKIM.1-0Brandon Johns is quite different from a typical freshman.  Not only does he stand 6’7,” or play varsity basketball, but the East Lansing ninth grader received a collegiate basketball scholarship from the Alabama Crimson Tide.

“It feels great,” Johns said of his offer.  “It’s a feeling I have never had before.”

Alabama will be under the direction of first year head coach Avery Johnson this upcoming campaign.  Johnson is most known for his time spent as an NBA head coach in the 2000s, guiding the Dallas Mavericks to the 2006 finals.  However, Coach Johnson was a point guard for the 1999 San Antonio Spurs championship team.

“I started hearing about them (Alabama) about a couple weeks ago, but I never thought this (an offer) would happen,” Johns added.  “And it was such a great experience to get to talk to him (Avery Johnson) and to hear how he got to where he is at now.”

A versatile skilled inside-outside forward, Johns has been recognized since the eighth grade.  He’s been invited to many of the top underclassmen camps in the country, including the Team USA mini-camp in Colorado.  Colleges such as Michigan, Michigan State, Ohio State, and Stanford have all expressed interest in Brandon.  Coaches on the next-level tell him they admire his upside, athleticism, and ability to play multiple positions on the floor.

“They (schools) say I’m very good at all positions,” Johns notes.   “And I should work on a few things but if I keep working at the pace I’m at then I won’t have a problem fitting in at the next level.”

With scholarships and interests comes notoriety.  Johns will likely receive the absolute best of his opponents each time he steps on the floor, instead of brushing off the fame, Johns embraces the bright lights.  It’s material he will use to only strengthen his game as time goes on.

“I like it (fame) but I don’t let it get to my head or over my head to where I just want to settle,” said Johns.  “It pushes me to see how farther I can get.”

 

Oak Park Senior Justin Knight Commits To Siena Heights

3 May

IMG_0981When did you know Siena Heights was right for you?

I knew Siena Heights was right for me as soon as I left their campus from my visit.

What do you like about the campus?

Yes I visited the campus, I liked how the environment was small and easy to adapt too.

What is your relationship with the coaches like?

My relationship with the coaches is very good, they plan on using me for my pass-first mentality and ability to shoot the ball.

How would you describe yourself as a player?

As a player I believe I distribute the ball to my teammates and knock down open shots when needed.

What were some other schools looking at you and what was different about Siena Heights?

Other schools that showed interest were Kalamazoo College, Cornell College, Southwest Oregon CC, Sinclair CC, Illinois Tech University, and Concordia University.  The difference between them and Siena is the relationship with the coaches I talked with Coach Case very often, he told me good luck before my big games in my high school season.  I liked that.

How was this past season for you?

This past high school season was bittersweet. I feel like I stepped up this year, making a name for myself but then again wish I had a little more time to go farther in the playoffs.

What do you have to say for your entire high school career?

I feel like I really grew throughout my whole high school career. Gaining a better knowledge for the game and getting myself ready for the next level.

What do you plan to study?

Education wise I plan on majoring in sports management or physical education so if I don’t play basketball anymore I can still be around the game.

Warrior Jam Fest Day Two Recap

3 May

IMG_0502Pool play ended, and a bracket games commenced.

Dequan Powell 6’0″ guard Michigan Playmakers 17u (pictured)- 

While known for a defensive player, Dequan was able to give the Playmakers offensively, 13 against Hoop Grind and 11 vs. the Warriors.  Many of which came off jump-shots, an area he has improved drastically compared to a year ago.  Connected on four threes in the two combined games, and several mid-range pull-ups, while also playing well defensively.

Dwight Burton 6’1″ guard Michigan Playmakers 17u- 

The Playmakers already have a solid group of guards, but Burton can put them over the top.  In his first tournament with the team this Spring, Dwight did not disappoint, 16 in the first game, nine against Hoop Grind, and 13 coming vs. the Warriors.  In one particular stretch against the Warriors, Burton looked unstoppable, scoring seven straight, a nice take to the basket, a three, and a circus shot through contact at the rim.  Overall, Burton has a nice first step, a variety of moves to attack the basket for a scorer, and quality ball-handling abilities.  His best move of the day was coming down on the break with one defender with him, faking a behind-the-back pass, the defender following, and Burton sliding in for an uncontested lay-up.

Mike Bruce 6’3″ guard Michigan Warriors 17u-

Plays more an off-guard role compared to his point guard responsibilities at Belleville during the season.  Bruce scored 13 points in the loss to the Playmakers, and was the catalyst for a near comeback trailing double-digits throughout the game.  Bruce displayed an improved mid-range game, and attacking the offensive glass for second-chance baskets.

Tabin Throgmorton 6’3″ guard Team Basketball 17u-

At Clarkston Tabin was a role player, now he does it all for Team Basketball.  Score, rebound,  handle the ball, facilitate, shoot, he finds so many ways to beat opponents.  Very crafty and one step ahead of defenders.  Also hit a game winner for his team on the day.

Kyle Woodruff 6’2″ guard Michigan Mustangs-Woodruff 17u-

Didn’t let the high-intensity/emotional game shake his play, scoring nearly a third a of his team 56 points with 23.  Hit clutch threes down the stretch in the second-half coming off screens, and was impeccable from the free-throw line.

Other standouts on the day:

Kaevon Merriweather 6’1″ guard Michigan Warriors 16u- Ceiling is extremely high for Merriweather.  Will be in contention at Romulus come Summer League for minutes.

Antuan Johnson 6’5″ forward Michigan Playmakers 17u- Freak of an athlete.  Nearly had a SportsCenter highlight worthy dunk.  Still found ways to clean the glass, and change shots.

Andia Marsh 6’1″ guard Michigan Warriors 17u- Lived at the free-throw.  Tough to stop when gets downhill.

Brian Walker 6’4″ forward Ypsi Cavs- Showed flashes at times of being able to shoot/score the ball.

Dave Wren 6’1″ guard Ypsi Cavs- One of the best unsigned senior point guards in Michigan at the moment.  Gracefully gets around the floor, pass first, and plays above the rim.

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