Friday, May 26, 2017

Buckeyes Make National List

Seth Wilson, Mechie Johnson, Skyler Schmidt & Chris Livingston
We recently stumbled on national player rankings for the classes for 2022 and 2021, and discovered that 4 Ohio players were featured. The Runna Report lists Seth Wilson (#20), Meechie Johnson (#33) and Skyler Schmidt (#35) among their top 40 players in the class of 2021.  In addition, Chris Livingston (#14) is the lone Buckeye to crack the report’s top 32.  Of course we’ve seen each of these players perform since the 4th grade, so it comes as no surprise that they are receiving national recognition. It should also be noted that each of the 4 players recently participated in the UA Next Combine in Chicago, IL and more than held their own!  In fact, Johnson was widely considered the best performer there, while Livingston, one of only two 7th graders, made a big time impact!

We are, however, surprised at a couple of omissions, as we believe that another handful of Ohio players could have made this list.  Moreover, each of the 4 listed players have been perianal all-stars and Top 5 Award winners at our Buckeye Prep Elite Showcases.  In fact, each of them was a participant in our prestigious Ohio North vs South All-Star Game last September.  Congrats the each player and their parents for this great recognition.  On another note, we also noted several other Buckeye Prep Elite Showcase alumni represented on the list. Zion Harmon (#1), Jalen Blackmon (#12), Ryan Conway (#19),  Furst (#23), Pierre Brooks II (#36) and Carter Whit (#38) all made the 2021 list.

Shockers Log in Impressive Season

2024 Ohio Schockers
The Jackson (Massillon, OH) based Ohio Shockers (2024) just completed their 2017 AAU Campaign with an impressive 27-0 overall record. Their record includes titles in all 6 of the tournaments they entered, including: The Ballers Bash (VAC), The Battle (VAC), Rising Stars Classic (, Massillon Challenge (Ohio, Akron Cage Classic (VAC), and Prime Time Challenge (VAC).  Along the way the Shockers defeated teams such as SMAC-Akron-Evans, Mahoning Valley Elite, Ohio Panthers, MKU, and the Dawgs to name a few.  However, they saved their best last in defeating TNBA East-Loppolo (2 championships & 4 finals this season) 49-32 in the Prime Time Challenge championship game.

Over the past 2 seasons, the Shockers have gone 62-6, with 3 of those losses coming at the hands of teams form out of state in the Dru Joyce Shooting Stars Classic.  The team, coached by Jim Kish, Dan Weekly, and Chad Bailey, includes players from Jackson, Lake, Louisville, and Green.  The key to the Shockers’ success is their unselfish brand of play, and the fact that each player is able to mesh well into a team concept.  We would like to congratulate to Shockers on their impressive 2-year run.  With that said, we would like to see them upgrade their 2018 schedule so the get an opportunity to play teams listed in out top 20 Power Rankings!  Hopefully we get a chance to see them in the Buckeye Prep Invitational next year!

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Branham Video Demonstrates Talent

There's a new highlight video out on Malaki Branham (6'3/WF/2021/Columbus) showing his wide range of talent.  We've been following Branham for a number of years now and it's clear he continues to grow and develop.  A perennial all-star and Top 5 Award winner at our Buckeye Prep Elite Showcases, Branham easily projects as a D-I prospect.  Long, athletic with an improving skill set best describes Branham's gifts.  He's also getting to and finishing at the rim on a consistent basis.  As one of the key pieces to our #1 ranked Tru Game, Braham is becoming a force both offensively and defensively.  We expect Branham will contribute to a varsity program early in his freshman season.  Check out the video below.

Highlight Video

Dawg Days Grab Primetime Crown

Dawg Days Basketball
Coach Morgan Wenger’s 2022 Dawg Days Basketball squad finished 6-0 on their way to the title of a Primetime sponsored tournament last weekend. To claim it all, Dawg Days had to take down VAC-Knox (62-38); Ohio Hoopers (57-53); Team Cure-Molk (85-45); VAC Sullivan (70-55); Blue Jays (67-51); and Ohio Hoopers (second time) (55-53).  Standouts for the weekend included: Jalen Wenger, Javar Simpson, and Chris Smith.  Wenger’s team head to Ft. Wayne for the Memorial Run & Slam next weekend before returning to Columbus for the Buckeye Prep Summer Showdown.

Despite missing star forward, Willie Stewart, Another Level 2022 dominated the All-American Cage Classic.  Another Level went 7-0, with wins over Hard Work Basketball (65-44); Ohio KOTC (52-22); Dawg Days Basketball (66-26); Next Level (55-20); BFO (65-50); the tournament favorite, TNBA Shooting Stars (55-38); and Dawg Days Basketball in the championship (65-49).

According to the coach, Another Level “has had some disappointing losses this season.  Coming into the year expectations were very high with this talented group.  It took awhile, but they are finally catching their stride.  Losing to a team in the Elite Eight Gold Bracket at the Dur Joyce Shooting Stars Classic that they previously beat by 30 points illuminates their ups and downs.  However, they seem to be putting it together as the year progresses.”

Below is a look at Another Level’s roster and an evaluation of each player according to the team’s coach. This team has a lot of under the radar talent that has been under exposed so far. Star forward Willie Stewart (Euclid) has already received recognition at Buckeye Prep Invitational. His motor, mixed with his athleticism, could make him one of the best raw talents in the state. Also, forward Duron Montgomery (Euclid) has played like a man among boys all season, but especially against Ed Hebens' Shooting Stars, leading them to a 17-point victory, while completely dominating their bigs. Jalen Brown (Shaker) and John Henderson (Nordonia) is one of the top backcourts in the state. Jalen Brown has received top 20 in NEO national showcase two straight years and is an athletic play making point guard with a very high ceiling.

John Henderson has to be one of the top two-way guards in the state. Scoring 24 points in the championship game against Dawg Days, while also locking down their star player. This kid has unlimited potential. To round out this talented group, sharp shooting guard Sam Mulberry (Solon) is a knockdown shooter who has very high basketball IQ. The depth of this team is hard to match. Claishon Ivory (Euclid) is the most athletic player on the floor. Anthony McCarthy (Twinsburg) is a lockdown defender with a high motor. Lashon Singleton (Shaker) is a glass eater. Maurice Tartt (Warrensville) is a 6'2'' high-motor big. Jordan Cannon is an unstoppable slasher going left. We will catch Another Level at the Buckeye Prep Summer Showdown June 16th-18th.

The 2021 All-Ohio Wolves finished 3-3 on their way to a Silver Division runner-up finish at the All-Ohio Super Showcase on Sunday.  All-Ohio defeated Hardwork Basketball (67-28); lost to Dayton Wolves Blue; lost to MBA National (53-64); beat Dayton Nets (66-38), defeated Chicago’s Old Gold (53-37); and lost to ISG in the championship game (42-46). Deuce Shaw and Aaron Davis II were selected to the All-Tournament Team.  For the season, All-Ohio Wolves are 41-10 overall.

All-Ohio Wolves 2023 have had a good run the last 3 tournaments including a 2nd place, 1st place and a 4-1 record and 2nd place finish at the All-Ohio Super Showcase over their past 3 events.  Their run at the Super Showcase included wins over The Miller Factory, The Family (MI), Uplay Canada and All-Ohio White.  We will see All-Ohio Wolves 2023 at the Buckeye Prep Summer Showdown.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Ginn Elite Claims Championship

2021 Ginn Elite
This past weekend at the Shoot The Rock Classic National Qualifier in Erie, PA, Coach Bryon Ottrix’s 2021 Ginn Elite squad finished undefeated on their way to the title. Bryon Ottrix Jr, led the team in scoring all weekend, averaging 18 points per game, including a tournament-high 23 points. Also playing well for Ginn Elite were Randy Harris, Jaylen Anderson, and Jalen Knott.  Knott logged in a big performance in the championship game, scoring 19 points with four treys.

Congrats to Darryl Peterson's 4th grade All-Ohio Phenom team for making a Final Four run at the George Hill tourney in Indianapolis last weekend.  Peterson's team was upended in the semi-finals by the 2nd ranked (nationally) and eventual tourney champions, Carolina Stars by 8 points.  Phenom was powered by Darryn Peterson, who averaged 24 points per game.  Look for Peterson to move up in the national player rankings based on his outstanding play so far this season.  You can catch All-Oho Phenom in action at the Buckeye Prep Summer Showdown June 16-18th.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Takeovers Takes Nike Super Sixteen Crown

Teamtakeover-2022 All-Ohih Nike Super 16 Champions
The All Ohio Nike Super Sixteen held this past weekend in Columbus, gave us a first look at Team Takeover (TTO) class of 2022. Sponsored by Victor Oladipo of the Oklahoma City Thunder and guided by the steady hand of Ray Brewer (Head Coach), Keith Thomas and Jerald Roy (assistants), this young team made quite the impression during  their weekend in Ohio. Coach Brewer has assembled a talented team of young men that are driven to uphold and defend TTO as a program and the DMV as a whole. 

When individual scoring is at the fore front of youth basketball, these young men played as one unit involving each other in all aspects of the game.  As a result of this approach, these young men won each game by an average of 20 + points, including a big win in the  championship game where the final score was 58-34. TTO believes in defense first and that is exactly what was shown over the weekend.

Team Takeover’s 2022 roster includes: Christian Watson  (#1), Devin Dinkins  (#2), Christian Winborne  (#3), Dylan Williamson  (#4), Judah  Mintz (#5), Jabari Smith (#6), Derrick Keys (#7), John Loughlin  (#10), Christian May (#8), Stephaun Walker  (#11), and Wiz Rodger (Not picture).