Monday, December 31, 2018

Prep Elite Showcase to Spotlight 2027’s Elite

When the spring Edition of the Buckeye Prep Elite Showcase tips off on March 9that Otterbein University, Ohio’s most elite 4th graders will command the big stage.  For the first time ever, the class of 2027 will have the opportunity to participate in the prestigious Ohio North vs South All-Star Games.  Also, for the first time ever, and because the class is so loaded with elite talent, and many of the top players have already expressed a significant interest in the game, a 3rd team will be added to the mix. For this event, the top players from northern, central and southern Ohio will compete to determine not only the best players in the state, but also what region of the state has the best 4th grade players.

Below is a tentative list of players who have been invited to participate in the Saturday morning North vs South All-Star games. This list was compiled based on feedback we received from the coaches of the top travel teams in the state and other individuals who are familiar with the top players in this class.  Although 39 player names appear on the initial rosters, only the first 30 players to register  (10 players per team) will get to participate in the games.  Below is a registration link for the event, as well as a link to the event’s Information Page. 

For those 4th grade players who did not make our initial list, there is still the opportunity to participate in the elite showcase and play your way to the final all-star games at the end of the event. Also, a Although the spring showcase has primarily been used to highlight the girls slate of Ohio North vs South games, we added 4thgrade boys division this year so that we could get an early look at this class.  There will also be North/South games for 6th-8thgrade girls as well, as we will be building rosters over the next several weeks. 

This event will not only provide the best players to emerge from the pack and to receive early exposure, it will provide us with the opportunity to see the best players in the class and to begin posting features and tracking their progress.  As one final note, if someone from Michigan, Indiana or Kentucky is interested in putting together an all-star team for their respective state, lets us know and we will add it to the slate of 2027 all-star games! Moreover, we would also add a 3rd grade boys game if we can identify and make contact with the coaches parents of the top 3rd graders in the state. So, Coaches/parents, let make it happen! Finally, for more information about this great opportunity, you can contact us at either or 614-502-9359. 

North vs South All-Star Game Rosters (Tentative)

North All-Stars
Central All-Stars
South All-Stars
Keeran Stokes
Amir Clark
Joshua Tyson
Tyson Clay
Michael Daniels
Leshawn Hill
Lincoln Lee
Landon Evans
Chris Washington
Jaylen Billingsley
Tony Cornette
Ricky Isham
Shawn Foster
Dion Johnson
Darius Dennis
Jaylen Gunther
Tasii Davis
Jayshan Coffey
Brody Durham
Luca Filia
Woo Crane
Chad Rusinko 
Albert Moore
DeShan Harris
Isaiah Mack
Rico Scott
Micaiah Ehirim
Mali Pearson
Bryce Wells
Kameron Mercer
 Jeremiah Chapman
Jett Jerwers
Bryson Payne
David Seibert
Casey Brickner
Braylen Settlemeyer
Hasani Lamb
Caden Ivery
Braden Mack

2026 Probound Wins Indiana Title

5th Grade Pro Bound Silverbacks-Gym Rats Bullseye Tournament Champions
Coach Mike Daniels’ 5th grade Probound Silverback team finished 2-2 in route to the Sliver Division Championship of the Gym Rats’ Bullseye Tournament in Westfield, Indiana over the weekend.  After losses to the North Coast Bluechips (54-30) and R4L Pioneers (52-48) in pool play, Probound finished the event with wins over C2K 2026 (56-54) and 365 (56-50) to claim the title. 

For the record, the North Coast Bluechips went on to win the Gold Division Championship with victories over Carlos Davis' R4L Pioneers (46-23), Pro Bound Silverbacks (54-30), St. Louis Knights (56-47), Much Greater Elite (48-31) and CU (52-33).  In the 6thgrade division, Superfriends finished 5-0 and claimed the Gold Division title.  Congratulations to Coach Daniels, his players and parents on the win!

Monday, December 24, 2018

Merry Christmas

On behalf of the staff and management, the Buckeye Prep Report family would like to wish everybody a very Merry Christmas! Take this opportunity to enjoy time with friends and family.

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Buckeye Prep Elite Showcase Alums Excel in Middle School Ball

Kamryn Grant & Berry Wallace
From our experience, players who excel at our elite showcases go on to star for their respective middle school teams.  Case in point, according to Team Knockdown Coach Ron Bess, 2 of his best players, Kamryn Grant and Berry Wallace, both of whom made the finial all-star game and were selected for Top 5 Awards at our March elite showcase have enjoyed tremendous success with their respective middle school teams so far this season.  

Specifically, just last week, Grant went off for an eye popping 39 points in a game as her undefeated Berwick Middle School squad got by South Middle School.  In that game, Grant knocked down 4 treys.  In another game a week later, Grant went for another 22 points and 12 rebounds.  Wallace also has her Pickerington Ridgeview Middle School team undefeated, and she recently logged in an impressive performance with a 25-point outburst. 

This upcoming travel season, both Grant and Wallace will return to their highly successful 2024 Team Knockdown team, who we had ranked #3 in the state in our final Buckeye Prep Power Rankings last season.  Also, look for both players to make the roster for our 2019 Ohio North vs South All-Star game on March 9th!  As always, we are committed to following the success of our elite showcase alumni all the way through their basketball careers.

In addition, word has it that Jalen McElroy ( 5’8”/WF/2024/Canton) had a big time performance last night, as he led his Crenshaw Middle School team to a 56-30 win over North Canton Middle School with 41 points in only 18 minutes of play. According to his travel team coach, McElroy scored all of his points “…on drives to the bucket, in the midrange, and free throws. McElroy runs with Ohio Phenom Academy in the spring and summer.  Finally, we also heard that John Mobley Jr. went off for 40 plus points last week for his middle school team as well!  Stay tuned for more updates as we get them.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

Shock Claims Title

5th Grade Cincy Shock 2018 Turkey Shootout Champions
This past weekend, Coach David Svoboda’s 5th grade Cincy Shock squad finished 4-0 on their way to the championship of the Turkey Shootout in Beavercreek, Ohio.  The Shock’s trek to the title included wins over Tip City (twice), Beavercreek Stars and Carroll.  Standouts for the Shock included Drew Duvall (5’5”/ WF/2026/Beavercreek), Grayson Davis ( 5’1”/SG/2026/Beavercreek), and David Svoboda (5’2”/PG/2026/Beavercreek). According to Coach Svoboda, the Shock’s success was attributed to “…ball movement and good defense.” It should be noted that the core of this Shock team runs with Dayton Metro during the spring and summer travel season. Congrats to Coach Svoboda, his players and parents for the win.

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Happy Thanksgiving From Buckeye Prep

The Buckeye Prep family would like to extend Happy Thanksgiving wishes to you and your family. During the holidays it's important we all take the time to enjoy our loved ones. Oh yea, there should be a lot of great college basketball on TV today! God Bless!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Probound Goes Undefeated in COBA Preview

2026 Probound
As the winter basketball season approaches so does the season for preview type events.  On Saturday, Mike Daniels’ 5th grade Probound squad finished 3-0 at the Central Ohio Basketball Association’s annual preview event which was held at Worthington Kilborne High School near Columbus. Probound won each of their 3 games (against Grandview Navy, Berlin Eagles & Big Walnut) by double digits, 2 of which were by 20+ points. According to Coach Daniels, his team executed on their primary pre-event goals. “We came out real scrappy looking to take early leads. Our offense ran through our defense as we got a lot of steals and easy transition buckets,” said Daniels.

Probound has a high-powered roster which includes some of the top 4thgraders in the state including: Casey Brickner (4’9”/SG/2027/Galloway), Mike Daniels (4’7”/SG/2027/Hilliard), Tansai Davis (4’5”/SG/2027/Columbus, and Tony Cornett (4’8”/PG/2027/Columbus), all of whom are featured in our recently published 2007 Player Watch List, and also represent the nucleus of the Team Dose AAU team that was ranked 2nd in our final Power Rankings last season.  In addition to the 4thgraders, the Probound roster includes a group of 5thgraders including: Mitchell Wheeler  (4’9”/WF/2026/Gahanna); Cole Naegele (5’0”/PF/2026/Gahanna); Tayshon Smith (4’8”/SG/2026/Columbus); and Cole Shope (5’6”/C/2026/Columbus).  

Probound’s season opener will tip off on December 1st.  Congratulations to Coach Daniels and his team for a fast start to the 2018/2019 winter season!  We intend to keep an eye on this year’s winter season and we invite coaches and parents to send us updates on their team’s progress so we can update our website. Please send information and team pictures to us at

Sunday, November 18, 2018

IBT Middle School Showcase Loaded with Talent

Mobley, Holyfield, Carter, Mills-Smith, Henson & Milton
On Saturday, we had the opportunity to spend a few hours at the 6th Annual IBT Academy Middle School Showcase at the Wellington School in Columbus. Renny Tyson and his staff did a fantastic job of attracting many of the top middle school programs in the central Ohio Area.  In fact, the event featured 15 games and 30 boys and girls 7th and 8th grade teams.  In terms of the format, each game consisted of two, ten-minute quarters and ran every 45 minutes. As has been the case every time we've attended the event, there was loads of talent with both the boys and girls teams.  Below are the team results and a list of the standout players we saw at the event.

In the 6 games we watched, Bexley's 8th grade girls deleted Mechanicsburg 15-8; Linden McKinney's boys got by Our Lady of Perpetual Help 24-8; Walnut Springs' 7th grade boys beat Reynoldsburg Waggoner 18-13; Marysville Bunsold's girls defeated Reynoldsburg 8-4; Reynoldsburg Baldwin's 7th grade boys beat Horizon Science 26-16; and Olentangy Orange's 8th grade boys beat London 22-14.

Standout Performers

John Mobley Jr.
Brady Carter
Sir Donald Milton
Shamar Mills-Smith
Rycheous McKinney
Abdiaziz Mohamed
Lloyd Kelly
Christopher Austin
Noah Smith
Nino Phillips
Kalen Boone
Simone Holifield
Mia Murry
Reason Cotner
Maddie Hanson

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Warriors Prepare for Upcoming Season

When the 2018/2019 winter basketball season tips off later this month, Coach Scott Bradley’s New Birth Warriors team will have several new faces.  In fact, this season, the Warriors will only return 3 players from last season’s squad, including Arness Lawson (2025), Mykell Murphy (2025) and Darius Graves (2025). New to the team this year are Jaylen Sims (2025), Brayden Torgrimson (2025), Amari Hodges (2025), JR Bates (2025), Laz Lawson (2025), Maurice Hamrick (2028), Deon Johnson (2027), and Jeriah Golden (2025). 

Because they’ve only had 3 practices to date, when asked what his team’s potential is for this season, Coach Bradley was cautious. “I don’t know.  We’re going to be competitive, but it’s not going to be like last year,” in terms of success, said Bradley. In addition, the addition of Westerville’s Jaylen Sims has Bradley a little more optimistic. “Sims is going to be good,” added Bradley.  

In addition to Sims, Arness Lawson’s play will be key to the Warriors success this season, as he has established himself as one of the best players in the state in the class of 2025. The Warriors will open their season at the Thanksgiving Shootout at the Kingdom Sports Center in Franklinton.  We intend to follow this Warriors’ progress this season so stay tuned!

Sunday, November 4, 2018

Get Out and Vote on Tuesday!

We at the Buckeye Prep Report urges everybody to exercise their right to vote this Tuesday. The stakes could not be higher for our country!  

Buckeye Prep Stock Risers

Much like stocks trading on the New York Stock Exchange, a player’s basketball stock often ebbs and flows throughout the course of a season, and from season-to-season. In an effort to be as inclusive as possible, while providing broader exposure to the greatest number of players, we have decided to highlight a few players who we believe have the potential to see their stock rise over the course of the upcoming season.  

In terms of our methodology, we have considered several factors in selecting these players. First and foremost, these 64 players are not necessarily the most highly ranked players on our various top player lists, but rather players who have tended to fly a little under our radar; are on the cusp of breaking out, and/or have a chance to break into and/or rise up on our lists.  In addition, they tend to be players who we have not seen very much of, we may have only caught glimpses of during certain events, or heard positive comments about from credible sources.  With that said, some of the players we lis below are well known to us, but still see their stock rise.  Enjoy!

Buckeye Prep Stock Risers

Lawrence Rice-2023
Mason Shrout-2024 
Gwen Jenkins -2024
Brayden Fogal-2026 
JaVaughn Jones -2023 
Demarr Foster-2024 
Kamryan Grant-2025 
Derek Whitfield-2026
 Brandon Rose-2023
Willie Williams-2024 
Kelly Ernest -2023
Mali Pearson-2026 
Josh Jones-2023 
Lee Bruner IV-2024 
 E'moni Finch-2023
Rasheed Reed-2026 
 Tyler Williams-2023
Jarred McCoy-2024 
 Kendall George-2023
 Nate Mile-2026
 Ramone Jones-2023
 Shared Barnes-2024
 Taylor Haynes2024
 Levi Davis-2026
 Anthony Benard-2023
 Durrell Brooks-2024
 Cici Green-2024
 Cantrell Hughes-2026
 Nick Williams-2023
Stewart Hamilton-2024
 Zhieyah Rolack-2024
Athens McCillis-2026
 Najih Wright-2023
Arness Lawson-2024
Ann Hurst-2024
Brayden Fogal-2026 
 LA Hayes-2023
Jahleel Wakeel-2024
Tristen Williams-2026
Treyton Schroeder-2026
  Kellen Smnith-2023
Jaylon Rigdon-2024
Taylor Haynes-2024
Tejuan Barbour-2026
 Kaden Stephens-2023
Jordan Johnson
Sparkle Leigh-2021
Drake Ahrens-2026
Gavin Geisel-2023
Jeremiah Hughes
Sole Williams-2023
Shane Foster-2027
Sam Brown-2023
Karl Burroughs-2025
Gigi Bower-2024
Elijah McCree-2026
Sean Jones-2022
Joseph Boddie-2024
Grace Thomas-2024
Khani Thomas-2026
 Mike Bova-2022
Isaiah Robinson-2024
Madison Greene-2023
Ayden Snuder-2026

Saturday, November 3, 2018

Pearson Determined to Make Impact

Malsi Pearson 4'8" PG 2026 Akron
He prides himself on making an impact every time he steps on the court, and from what we saw at our Buckeye Prep Elite Showcase in September, and his 2018 highlight video featured below, Malsi Pearson (4’8”/PG/2026/Akron) is true to his word! What’s also extremely clear from what we’ve seen of Pearson’s game so far is his elite skill set, which includes an ability to shoot, pass and dribble at an elite level.  Let me be clearer; this kid is a wizard with the rock in his hands, and his ability and willingness to find open teammates and deliver pin point passes is nothing less than impressive.  

Moreover, Pearson is a 3-level scorer who can both light up the score board while also making teammates better with his ability to break down defenders and to get into the paint for drop off passes and easy layups.  That’s not all, he changes speed and direction at a high level, he has a high basketball IQ, he drains deep treys off the bounce or in catch and shoot situations, and he is brimming with confidence and swagger. 

Although he has not decided where he will play basketball when the 2019 season tips off in March, Pearson was a standout for the Columbus based Miller Factory and several other big-time programs, such as Mac Irvin Fire and Louisville United, last season.  According to Pearson’s coach at the Miller Factory, Pearson has a chance to be good going forward.  “I think he has a chance to be a top 5 point guard in his class in Ohio,” said Coach Wallie.  Pearson is not just a basketball standout, as he also wrestles and plays soccer at an elite level.  That’s not all, from what we’ve heard, Pearson is an excellent student as well.

With his all-star performance at our last elite showcase, Pearson is easily among the top 5 players in the state in the class of 2026.  With his talent and the number of games he has logged over the past few years we’re a bit surprised that Pearson’s name is not yet listed among the best nationally, as we can’t believe there are 25 better 5thgraders in the country than the Akron product.  We look forward to seeing more of Pearson at our March 9thelite showcase.