Roundtable: Taking stock of the sophs

Each week, we ask the hoops recruiting team to ruminate on a specific question.

More than halfway through the high school season, let's take a look at the 2017 class.

We'll spend most of this year closing out the 2015 class and then dedicating ourselves to 2016, but among those sophomores you've watched this season, who has grabbed your attention at this still-early stage?

Brian Snow: For me, the guy who has impressed is Paul Scruggs (pictured above). Scruggs is a shooting guard from Indianapolis (Ind.) Southport, and the question has always been would he project well because he is someone who is a bit maxed out physically already.

With that said, he just keeps getting better and making a huge impact on the game. Scruggs has a much better feel than people give him credit for, and also is a high level athlete with an elite motor. He might never be a kid who challenges for a spot in the top 10 or anything, but he is someone who is proving that he should be one of the most sought after prospects in the Midwest.

Evan Daniels: The obvious answer for me is DeAndre Ayton, as I think he may be the best prospect in all of high school basketball. At 6-11, he has a terrific basketball body and all the tools you look for in an elite center prospect.

But I feel like saying Ayton, who is already very well known in basketball circles, is almost cheating. So I guess the 2017 prospect that has really grabbed my attention during the high school season is 6-foot-11 post player Mohamed Bamba. Blessed with a long, lean frame, Bamba moves his feet extremely well, has extremely long arms and has feel of how to play the game on both ends of the floor. He'll need to get stronger and continued development, but I think he could potentially be an elite level prospect in the 2017 class.

Josh Gershon: I'll choose a player not currently ranked. I think 2017 Mission Hills (Calif.) Alemany wing Ernie Sears is having a strong sophomore season and really emerging as a high major prospect. He's about 6-foot-4, extremely long, a terrific defender that can guard multiple positions, a slasher, a talented passer and a guy who can hit a midrange pull-up jumper.

He's just a baby physically, looks very young and could still grow. There's a lot of upside here and Sears is no doubt one of the top young prospects on the west in 2017.

Rob Harrington: I’m looking forward to seeing more of Dajour Dickens. I watched him one day last fall and came away highly impressed, and it wouldn’t surprise me if he ends up moving up from the No. 47 ranking following the summer. A skinny 6-11 center, Dickens runs well and already flashes a blossoming skill level.

Adding to the plotline is that he plays for Hampton (Va.) Bethel, no stranger to star talent (e.g., Allen Iverson). Dickens will be a top evaluation priority in the spring and undoubtedly will be a very hot commodity on the recruiting front as the months pass by.

Evan Daniels, Brian Snow, Josh Gershon and Rob Harrington contributed to this report

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