Monday, August 29, 2011

Central Ohio Open Gym-Week Three

John Drapper-Eastmoor Academy

I had a chance to spend some time at Victor Dandrige’s open gym yesterday, and noted the fact that the number of players in attendance had increased. In fact, 70 players showed up for the run. At this point, all 6 courts at the USA Sports Academy are being used for games, and this week, there were more younger players. While I was there, I spotted a few kids who were really getting it done.  Eastmoor Academy’s John Drapper continues to look impressive.  The crafty 5’11 PG can really handle the rock and he does a great job of attacking the cup and finishing.   Westerville South’s Isiah “Zeek” Rogers made some noise on Sunday and he was widely considered one of the top performers of the day. 

Isiah "Zeek" Rogers-Westerville South

Pickerington Central's Caris Levert is a "Player of the Day" candidate, as his play was spectacular on Sunday. Both Devin Scott and Jordan Potts (Northland) logged in solid performances as well. Pickerington North's Devon Price had his jumper dialed in, while Walnut Ridge's Malik Dime, a long 6'9 center, showed his defensive prowess.  Add Windall Davis (Reynoldsburg), Jordan Potts and Brandon Bapst's (Grove City) name to the standout player list, as each of them played well. Team of the day honors go to team #5 with Caress Levert, Daryl Levert, JB Best (Pick Central),  Drew Makiewicz (The Miami Vallley School) and Steve Wolczak (Olentangy). Every week the competition just keeps getting better, so if you have some time on Sunday afternoon, you might want to head on over and catch some of the action!

Open Gym Rosters
Zeek Roger's Buzzer Beater

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Molock Still Has Interest

Kyle Molock-Senior PG

Kyle Molock, a 6’1 PG at Dublin Coffman, has had his fair share of bad luck over the past 12 months.  As most people know by now, Molock, widely considered one of the top guard prospects in Ohio in the class of 2012, verbally committed to Purdue early, but suffered a season-ending knee injury last summer.  If that wasn’t enough, Molock and the Purdue coaching staff agreed to part ways several months ago. In an interview with Molock last week, he appeared at peace with the situation with Purdue.“I have no bad feelings for them (coaching staff), I’m not bitter. They had to protect themselves (concerns about recovery) when I got hurt and I had to protect myself,” stated Molock.  

Fortunately for Molock, there is still interest in his talent, thou mainly from mid-major level programs.  In fact, according to the senior guard, he holds offers from Toledo, Wolford, Kent State and Cleveland State.  Molock has also received interest from larger programs such as Stanford, Virginia, Norte Dame and Dayton. Although Molock has not taken any unofficial visits to date, he is currently trying to set up a visit with Stanford in a couple of weeks.

Molock does not claim any favorites at the moment, but he intends to ”make a list at the end of September after the open gyms,” added Molock. He plans  to make his college decision prior to the high school basketball season and will base his decision on the potential for early playing time.  Distance is not a huge consideration for Molock, but he noted, “Playing close (to home) would be nice, but I’m willing to go wherever.”  Molock reports that he is fully recovered from his injury and is optimistic about his senior season, stating, "We got a chance; I think we can win districts and make the regionals.”  Look for Molock and Dublin Coffman to make another nice run in 2012.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Pair of Central Ohio Juniors Draw Interest

Jack Gibbs

Although they are only juniors, Westerville North’s Jack Gibbs and Gahanna Lincoln’s Aaron Jackson have both converted a solid summer of performance into college scholarship offers. While running with Ohio Varsity this summer, both players were key to the team’s surprising success, and college coaches have taken notice. I sat down with both players on Sunday to discuss their current recruiting status.  According to Gibbs, he has actual offers from Ohio, Toledo, Akron, William & Marry and James Madison. In terms of other interest, Gibbs is hearing from VCU, Davidson, Indiana State, Wake Forrest and Cincinnati. Although Gibbs has only had a chance to visit Ohio (2 weeks ago), describing the school as “nice,” he plans visits to VCU and Cincinnati some times in September.  When he makes his final decision, prior to his senior year he says, Gibbs will be focusing on style of play; he prefers up-tempo, and “good coaching.”  When asked about his upcoming high school season, Gibbs was optimistic, stating, “I think we can win district if we play together and develop good chemistry.”  With the addition of Jaylen Benton (a transfer from Northland) in the backcourt, look for Westerville North to claim a league championship and to make a deep run in the district tournament.

Aaron Jackson

Gahanna’s Aaron Jackson also parlayed a big summer into interest, as he lists offers from Ohio, Akron and Toledo, with interest from VCU, Miami (OH), Bowling Green and Dayton.  Although he is yet to make any visits, Jackson intends to visit VCU  as soon as his schedule allows. When he makes his decision next summer, Jackson will be looking for a school that can provide him with a good education, has a sports management program, and is located within a 6-10 hour drive.  Jackson is optimistic about this upcoming prep season, and sees a possible district championship in his future depending on Gahanna’s post play.  In terms of the OCC Capital division, Jackson believes Pickerington Central and Newark will also be contenders. Good luck to Gibbs and Jackson as they prepare for their junior seasons.  Buckeye Prep will keep an eye on both players and provide updates on their recruiting.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Ohio New Heights Claims Indiana Championship

Ohio New Heights-Silver Division Champs 2011 Hoosier Shootout
Congratulations to coach Nick Tillman and his 8th grade Ohio New Heights squad for winning the silver division title at the 2011 Hoosier Shootout this past weekend. The team finished with a 5-2 tourney record with wins over the Kimbro Ballers, Team Indiana White, Team Hustle (Illinois), BA Celtics and the Village Athletes. New Heights team members included: Gabe Akins, Max Oyer, Tristin Tillman, Rico Stafford, Connor Woods, CJ Saunders, Xavier Simpson, Elijah Pugsley and Caleb Mitchell. Reports have it that “point guards CJ Saunders and Xavier Simpson controlled the offense and played lock down defense,” while “Caleb Mitchell rebounded well and had a lot of blocks”. For the season, Ohio New Heights finished with an impressive 51-15 record. Props go out to the team’s players and parents for finishing the season strong!.

Trey Burke Gets Run at Open Gym

Trey Burke

Although I saw him in they gym, I just learned that Michigan's  Trey Burke, who was home for a few days, actually participated in Victor Dandridg'es open gym on Sunday.  Although I did not get a chance to see him play, Ty Kish caught the action and hooked up a highlight video of Burke.  From some accounts, Burke is transitioning well in Ann Arbour and has a good chance of starting when the college basketball season tips off.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Central Ohio Open Gym-Session Two

I had a chance to catch some of the action at Victor Dandridge's open gym on Sunday, and I left impressed with the level of play at the third year event.  Out of the 55 kids in attendance, there were about 10 players that caught my attention. Westerville North's Jack Gibbs had a nice day, as did his teammates Tavion Thomas and Matt Rhodes. Cincinnati verbal Devon Scott logged in another solid day of play, along with Upper Arlington's Carter Smith. Eastmore's John Draper continued to open eyes with his play. Although he is only a freshman, Africentric's DeQuan Harrison had a lot of people trying to figure out who he was. Huntington Prep's Elijah Macon was in town to get a haircut and stopped by the gym to get in a quick run before he got back on the road.  I'm glad he did, as he treated onlookers to some highlight-worthy plays, all above the rim of course.

Jack Gibbs-Player of the Day

Some of the top teams of the day included the Westerville North led group of Jack Gibbs, Matt Rhodes, Tavion Thomas, Jalen Benton and Isaiah Brooks.  The Brookhaven bunch of Ronnie Williams, Kalid King, Randy Clakson Jr., Steve Walzcak and JaQuan Harrison ran off a string of wins that led them from court 5 to the top court. The team of Devon Scott, Jordan Potts, Carter Smith, Keshaun Lewis and Darryl Levert notched several wins as well.  On a side note, it was good to see Dublin Coffman's Kyle Molcok back on the court, after missing all of last season recovering from an ACL injury.  From what I could tell, Molock did not appear to be slowed by the injury.

Devon Scott, Coach Vic & Elijah Macon

Due to the increased interest, next week Dandridge expects to use all of the facilitie's 6 courts to accommodate another 20 players to the event. As proof that the event is starting to attract more attention, ESPN 's John Stovall and Ty Kish were both in the house checking out the action. To see the pictures I took at the event, visit the Buckeye Prep Facebook Fan Page.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Central Ohio Open Gym Tips Off

Devon Scott-Player of the Day

On Sunday, Victor Dandridge's open gym attracted many of central Ohio's top high school players.  The seven week event will be held at the USA Sports Academy in Columbus, and will again provide about 40 varsity level players the opportunity to get in a quality run simply for the cost of admission.  In week one, 37 players showed up, and each of the 7 teams played about seven games.  According to Dandridge, Northland's Devon Scott was the player of the day, as his performance was described as dominate.  In addition, Scott's undefeated team got the nod as the team of the day.  The team's roster included: Scott, Jordan Potts, Ty Harriston, John Draper and Jordan Fair.

From what I hear, some of the other standout players included: Carter Smith (Upper Arlington), Nick Archer (Olentangy Liberty), Roy Alexander,  Eric Robey (Jonathon Alder), Caris Levert (Pick Central), Manuel Powell (Gahanna), Jalen Robinson (Northland), Jordan Potts (Northland), Jordan Cowgill (Thomas Worthington), Isiah Brooks (Walnut Ridge), and Adam McCall (Walnut Ridge) 

Some of the other players in the house included: Jack Gibbs and Matt Rhoades (Westerville North), KeChaun Lewis (Northland), Eric Weisenbach (Dublin Coffman), Jaylen Benton (Westerville North), Also, for those of you who have not yet heard the news, Jaylen Benton has transferred from Northland to Westerville North, where he will now compete alongside Gibbs, Rhoades and Adrian Cook.  With that said, don't cry for Northland, as sophomore Ty Harriston is reportedly poised to fill the spot vacated by Benton.  If you want to catch the action for yourself, the sessions run from 4:00pm to about 6:00pm on Sunday afternoons. Finally, look for more updates on Dandridge's open gyms over the next 6 weeks.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Ohio Freshmen to Transfer to IMG Academy

MaCio Teague

According to his mother, 2015 MaCio Teague will be taking his talents to Bradenton, Fl. and the IMG Academy this fall. In an email to Buck Prep, Barbara Teague indicated, "I am so humble in letting you know that MaCio will be attending IMG Academy in Bradenton Fl. They have known about MaCio for a while now.  Although IMG is most known for producing professional tennis players, the Florida school specializes in 7 sports including basketball. While in Bradenton, Teague will be exposed to a daily curriculum that will be heavy in basketball skill training.  "Each player will be individually trained and evaluated. I can go on and on. What a blessing this is," said Teague's mother.

Not only is IMG known to produce next level athletes in a variety of sports, the school's academic reputation is impressive as well. According to Teague, "this is a blessing as we have ALWAYS thrived on development on and off the court. The school allows for a structured classroom setting. It allows the students to prepare for college. MaCio is an honor student which this school will afford him the level of courses that will allow him to challenge himself." As far as basketball, he will have the opportunity for diverse training, being evaluated in the Gatorade Science Center as well as the travel and exposure," said Teague's mother. Had he remained in Ohio, Teague would have most likely attended Princeton High School. I for one will miss watching MaCio play this upcoming season, but I wish him success at IMG Academy.

Kevin "Sticks" Fisher

After posting the above story last night, I was informed that another Buckeye freshman would be heading south the Bradenton, FL. as well. I was surprised to learn that Kevin "Sticks" Fisher will joining Teague at IMG Academy in the fall.  Fischer, a 6'6 center from Groveport, apparently saw the same opportunities in the Florida school as did Teague.  Both players toured the IMG facilities while in Florida for the AAU Nationals in July. Although the departure of Teague and Fisher represents a loss to Ohio basketball, I hope the move pays dividends for both players going forward.

Both Teague & Fisher in Action

Saturday, August 6, 2011

John Stovall's Top Ohio AAU Teams

All-Ohio Red 17s-AAU National Champions

John Stovall, the primary authority on high school basketball in Ohio, has put together a list of the top high school AAU teams in the state. In addition to writing and scouting for, Stovall works for Nike, and is co-owner of Prep Spotlight Magazine. In his various roles, Stovall attends most of the major AAU events around the country, and he has seen many of the teams on his list on multiple occasions.  Below is his team list:

1. King James
2. King of the Court
3. Cincinnati Lakers
4. All Ohio Red
6. Ohio Varsity
7. Cincinnati Tar Heels
8. Team Lima
9. Millinium Fire
10. Ohio Basketball Club
11. Team Queen City
12. Queen City Prophets
13. Northwest Ohio Basketball Club
14. TNBA
15. Shining Star
1. All Ohio Red
2. All Ohio Varsity
3. Ohio Basketball Club
4. Martin's Wolverines
5. All Ohio Grey
6. Shining Star Schaefer
7. King James
10. Ohio Hoopsters
11. Midwest Athletic Club
12. Cincinnati Lakers
13. Shining Star Moman
14. Queen City Prophets
15. Northwest Ohio Basketball Club
1. All Ohio Red
2. Ohio Hoopsters
3. All Ohio Purple
4. King James
5. Ohio Basketball Club
6. Ohio Shooting Stars
7. Cincinnati Knights
8. Friends for Life
10. All Ohio Gold
11. Shining Star Walther
12. Northwest Ohio Basketball Club
13. All Ohio Black
14. Mustang Ballers
15. Millinium Fire

Monday, August 1, 2011

All-Ohio Red Claims U-17 AAU Title

With their 60-48 win over Memphis YOMCA today, All-Ohio Red bought home yet another national championship. On their way to the title, in championship bracket play, All-Ohio got by the Florida Rams Blue (85-66), Houston Hoops (73-59), Charlotte Nets (69-62), Georgia Stars (84-55) the Alabama Challenge (68-72) and Memphis. Over the past several years, Jerry Watson's All-Ohio program has enjoyed unparalleled success, and  his program has established itself as arguably the best AAU program in the country.

Although All-Ohio Red had its struggles at various points this spring and summer, their talent was always unmistakable, and their trek to the championship proved they could play with anybody in the country. Coach Quinton Rogers described the win as, "a total team effort." The is even more special, as All-Ohio was playing without Terry Rozier, the starting point guard. Reports have it that the standout players over the course of the week included Northland's Devon Scott and Jordan Potts as well as Marion Franklin's Elijah Macon. Congratulations to the All-Ohio Red players and coaches for bringing home the U-17 AAU National Championship!

Buckeye Prep Elite Showcase (Session #2)

Below is an email I sent out to everyone on my bulk email list.  If you are interested in sending your son/player to the September 25th showcase, please email me at As a reminder, every player listed on any of my "Top Player" lists are invited, as are any players who have attended prior showcases.  It sould be another very competitive event!!

Parents & Coaches,

We are now less than 60 days away from session #2 of the Buckeye Prep Elite Showcase, currently scheduled for Sunday, September 25th at Gahanna Lincoln High School in Gahanna, Ohio (suburb of Columbus). Although most of you have already received an invitation and registration forms by now, I have attached another copy just in case you have misplaced, deleted or have not received a copy. As was the case at session #1, the competition will be fierce, as many of Buckeye Prep’s top 30, top 100 and top 150 players will be participating in the event. Our last session attracted over 230 players, many of whom are elite players in the region. As always, the exposure opportunities offered by the showcase is unmatched, as ESPN, Prep Spotlight and other scouting services will be covering the event. Also, we at Buckeye Prep pride ourselves on organization, providing first class awards and providing a safe and exciting atmosphere for you and your child/player. Below is a link to a list of the players who have already committed to attending this showcase. The list will be updated daily as new players acknowledge their intent to attend. If you intend to send your son/player, please email or text me so I can update the list. Also, please submit the registration form and $85 registration fee by August 25th to reserve your son/player’s spot. ( About 1 week prior to the event, I will be emailing and posting team assignments, rosters and game schedule to all registered players. I hope you and your son/player can attend the event!

Also below are some links to session #1 post event reports: