Tyler Ulis, PG, Meanstreets – The diminutive point guard continued to tear up the competition with his play. Ulis has an absolutely uncanny ability to make others better, and simply knows how to play the game. He was dropping off assists left and right, then made shots, and despite his size competes on defense making things tough on the opposing teams. Ulis will continue to have his doubters because of his size, but the bottom line is he flat out knows how to play.
Jahlil Okafor, C, Mac Irvin Fire – It almost isn't fair how much bigger, stronger, and better he is than every other post player in the building. Despite constant double teams, and added attention from officials because of his size, Okafor flat out dominates. The kid is simply on another level as a refined post product than every other player around. Without a star studded supporting cast, Okafor continues to dominate and help his team to wins. Simply he was the most unstoppable player on the floor all day long.
Josh Cunningham, PF/SF, Mac Irvin Fire – Cunningham shows flashes of the big time potential that he possesses. He can play way above the rim and will do that catching lobs for dunks or with rebounds, and then when his feet are set is a decent three point shooter off the catch. Then after showing flashes he will disappear for a little while. Consistency is the issue, but the raw talent is there. It will be interesting to see if he makes that next step this spring and summer.
Vic Law, SF, Meanstreets – Law continues to impress. Now he is doing a little too much settling, and not attacking the rim using his strong frame and athleticism, but his shot is looking good, and he is making a few plays passing the ball as well. Add in that Law is a plus defender, and there is a lot of talent there. Now he needs to continue to round out his dribble drive game, as that was a definite weakness on Saturday.
Michael Finke, PF, Peoria Irish – The Illinois commitment had a bad shooting game, but that didn't prevent him from having a solid game. While there is no doubt he is a pick and pop power forward who will earn his minutes in college by hitting jumpers, Finke did show some skills on the post and rebounded a little. Defensively he is going to have trouble with athleticism, but his feel for the game is impressive, and if he would have shot half as well as normal the stat sheet would have been very impressive.
Larry Austin, PG, St. Louis Eagles – At about 6-foot-1 his athleticism and speed with the basketball is impressive. Austin at times is a major problem for defenses since he can attack and simply break people down, and then he is a slick passer. Sometimes with that passing his gets too fancy and commits a turnover, but he has that raw ability to make plays, and also is a plus defender. The jumper is looking better, though there is still work to be done on that part of his game.
Jordan Barnett, SF, St. Louis Eagles – A hot name during the high school season, Barnett showed some of those flashes again. He is a high level athlete who can finish above the rim, and then also has an okay jumper from the outside. Barnett has to get tougher and do a better job of playing through contact, but his athleticism and size on the wing are very uncommon. The tools are all there, now it is a question of how much dog does he have in him, and does he want to be a great player or simply a prospect.
Ethan Happ, PF, Quad City Elite – The future Wisconsin Badger is someone who fits what Bo Ryan does perfectly. A power forward with a great stroke at about 6-foot-7, Happ can put pressure on the defense that way, but also he pushes well in transition off of rebounds and is a very heady passer who sees the floor. Now Happ will struggle on the defensive end against good athletes, but his IQ and shot making make him someone who should fit in right away in Madison.
Jae'sean Tate, PF/SF, All-Ohio Red – Simply a beast, Tate as usual created havoc with his high motor and near elite athleticism. He rebounds well, scores it around the rim, and also is a very good passer. Though he isn't great skill wise shooting it, he understands how to set up his teammates, and that is something that is very underrated about his game. As always his bread and butter was simply playing harder and stronger than everyone else, but Tate does continue to get better and add more dimensions to his game.
Vince Edwards, PF, All-Ohio Red – It was a relatively quiet night for Edwards. Now he did have a block and showed his jumper, but overall he never really got into the flow. Edwards needs to crank up the motor a little bit as he has the skill level to be tough to deal with when he has things working. A definite talent, Edwards didn't get as much done as that talent level would suggest.
Keita Bates-Diop, SF, Illinois Wolves – The big time athleticism was even more apparent during an event win over All-Ohio. His length and athleticism puts him at another level than most, and then he plays fairly hard as well. Bates-Diop is now a reliable shooter and can handle it as well. While he doesn't always mix it up in the paint on either end, he will grab rebounds and push in transition to put pressure on a defense.
Jalen Brunson, PG, Mac Irvin Fire – It is scary to think of what the Fire would be like without Brunson. Not only does he know to get Okafor the ball, but he flat out is a stud on the offensive end in his own right. Brunson hit a mid-post fadeaway jumper that no other person in the tournament could have made look so good, and then was on from three, while also tying the game at the buzzer with an acrobatic driving layup. Bottom line is Brunson has been a true floor general who has controlled games and made big plays at big times. He is clearly asserting himself as one of the elite point guards in the 2015 class.
Nick Noskowiak, PG/SG, Wisconsin Playground Warriors – A combo guard who does a little bit of everything, Noskowiak can score, pass, and then also plays hard. What sets him apart is his idea of how to play and understanding of what to do every trip down. After his team fell in a huge hole early, Noskowiak was a monster and rallied them back to get the win. Not much is known about him nationally, but that is sure to change as he continues to get exposure during the spring.
Matt Heldt, C, Wisconsin Playground Warriors – A big man with touch, Heldt was a problem for a smaller frontline. He scored with his back to the basket, but also had a nice touch from the foul line and showed an idea of how to play facing the rim. Heldt isn't an above the rim player, but he does rebound well in his area, and plays solid position defense.
Roosevelt Smart, SG, Illinois Wolves – There has been a lot of debate as to who the best guard on a loaded Wolves 16 and under team is, and Smart might just be the right answer. He has good size at around 6-foot-2, is a high level athlete, can get to the rim, and also is a capable shot maker. He is still putting it all together, but as a prospect he is very good, and also he is turning himself into a productive player.
Prentiss Nixon, PG/SG, Illinois Wolves – Reminiscent of another Chicago product, Mike McCall, who is now at St. Louis, Nixon can play either guard spot and has good athleticism with the ability to make shots. Right now he doesn't have a great feel for how to make others better, but with the ball he can be a problem with his ability to get into the lane and his deep shooting range. As he continues to learn the position, his upside is big.
Aaron Jordan, SG/SF, Illinois Celtics – During the high school season Jordan built a reputation for himself as big time shooter, but he proved to be a bit more than that. Jordan got to the rim a few times, and with his length and athleticism was able to finish in the mid-range. Still it was his outside shot that did the most damage, but he is not a one dimensional player, and as he continues to refine his dribble drive game his stock will continue to go up.
Joseph Toye, SF, Illinois Celtics – Mostly an afterthought on his Whitney Young High School team, Toye is a go to guy for the Celtics, and he made the most of his opportunity at times. Toye has big time athleticism and is a high level defender. He had a block on the perimeter that turned into a drive and dunk that was as impressive as any sequence all day. Still in the second half he disappeared a bit, and just the flaws came out. The upside is still big, and he continues to get better, but Toye is not yet a finished product by any stretch.
Charles Matthews, PG/SG, Meanstreets – This kid is absolutely the truth. Matthews is one of the best in high school basketball at working the baseline and making plays. He is a good athlete who has great body control and the ability to get where he wants on the floor. Also Matthews can hit from deep, and simply is one of the elite prospects every time he steps on the court, and hardly ever disappoints.
Jayson Tatum, SF, St. Louis Eagles – Putting Tatum in a position category is unfair to the kid as he does everything when on the court. He showed the vision of a point guard, the shot making of a shooting guard, has the size of a wing, and then will rebound as well. Tatum didn't even have a dominant performance and he still looked like far and away the best player on the court. Once he gets strength it is incredible to think about what type of player he could be.
Will Gladson, PF/C, St. Louis Eagles – A high school and AAU teammate of Tatum, Gladson has a chance to be a high level prospect in his own right. Gladson has good hands, runs the floor, and shows a nice touch around the rim. He needs to continue to get stronger, but Gladson has major upside and will be a heavily scouted name in the Midwest over the next couple of years.
Vince Edwards maintained that Michigan and Purdue are the two schools out front in his recruitment.
Tyler Ulis picked up a recent offer from Purdue and will visit there on Thursday.