The Scout national team has descended on three cities, all three a relatively short drive from the others: Lexington, Ky., Louisville, Ky., and Indianapolis.
Nike is hosting an EYBL event in Lexington for the first time, a move that clearly doesn’t displease Kentucky faithful. Meanwhile, Under Armour’s Association is taking place in Louisville and Adidas Uprising returns to Indy, where the shoe giant frequently conducts its hoops affairs.
Likely every major conference program will have representation at one of the three events, and nearly all will spend at least some time at all three.
Here’s a look at what to look for over the next 60 hours.
What: Nike EYBL
When: April 24-26
Reporting Staff: Evan Daniels, Josh Gershon
Top Teams: Pro Skills, Athletes First, Wings Elite, Oakland Soldiers, PSA Cardinals, Team CP3, Team Final, King James, MOKAN Elite, The Family, Houston Hoops, Elfrid Payton Elite, St. Louis Eagles, Las Vegas Prospects, Team Penny, Team Takeover, Georgia Stars, City Rocks, E1T1, NJ Playaz.
Top Players: Malik Monk (pictured above), Harry Giles, Jayson Tatum, Omari Spellman, Abdul Ado, Udoka Azubuike, Tony Bradley, Nick Richards, De’Aaron Fox, Mamadi Diakite, Alterique Gilbert, Bruce Brown, DeJon Jarreau, Rodney Miller, Miles Bridges, Troy Brown, Michael Porter, Zach Brown, Wendell Carter, Jeremiah Tilmon, D.J. Harvey, Matt Coleman.
On The Marquee: For Josh and myself this is our first look at the crop of talent in the Nike EYBL. One game I’m particular excited for is Tatum vs Porter, St. Louis Eagles vs MOKAN Elite. Watching two of the premier wings in the country match up should be fascinating.
Also, I’m excited to see Harry Giles and see how his game has developed since mid-December, when I saw him last. Same goes for elite talent Malik Monk. The EYBL is usually a good setting to watch their top tier talents go head to head.
What: Adidas Gauntlet
When: April 24-26
Reporting Staff: Brian Snow
Top Teams: Team Loaded, Indiana Elite, Michigan Mustangs, Ohio Basketball Club, Atlanta Celtics, Gamepoint Elite, Northwest Panthers, Wisconsin Playground Warriors, Hoop Dreams, New Orleans Elite, NY Rens, Compton Magic, Minnesota D1, UPlay Canada, Game Elite, Mass Rivals, DC Thunder, EG10.
Top Players: Dennis Smith, Edrice Adebayo, T.J. Leaf, Kyle Guy, Matthew Moyer, Maverick Rowan, Eron Gordon, Brian Bowen, Quentin Goodin, Aaric Holman, DeRiante Jenkins, Rawle Alkins, Mustapha Heron, Lamar Peters, Kobi Simmons, Josh Langford, Frank Jackson, Jaylen Hands, Nolan Narain, Payton Pritchard.
On The Marquee: This weekend is all bracket play in Indianapolis, so individual matchups can be hard to predict. Still there is a lot to look forward to on the Adidas circuit. First of all, it has been a long time since I saw Josh Langford, so I am very interested to see how he has progressed.
I also would like to see Aaric Holman, who is someone who is opening up major eyes. With Derryck Thornton reclassed to 2015, Dennis Smith and Kobi Simmons are now vying for the No. 1 point guard spot in the 2016 class and that should be fun to monitor as well. Overall there is a lot going on this weekend, and there should be some tremendous action.
What: Under Armour Association
Where: Louisville, Ky.
When: April 24-26
Reporting Staff: Rob Harrington
Top Teams: Atlanta Xpress, DC Premier, Illinois Wolves, Indy Hoosiers, Team Felton, Team Breakdown, Canada Elite, Team Thad, Supreme Court, Carolina Wolves, 1 Nation, We R 1, DC Blue Devils, MWA Elite, KC Run GMC.
Top Players: Josh Jackson, Markelle Fultz, M.J. Walker, Barret Benson, Kris Wilkes, Paul Scruggs, Joey Brunk, Jalek Felton, Dewan Huell, Jaylen Fisher, Seventh Woods, DeAndre Ayton, Sedee Keita, Trevon Duvall, J.J. Caldwell, Terrance Ferguson, Mark Vital.
On The Marquee: Based on my experience at Under Armour a year ago, the Association enables me to find some relatively hidden gems relative to say, the EYBL. Under Armour boasts elite talent at the top, no question, including potential No. 1 junior Josh Jackson. But in addition to the guys we know are outstanding, opportunities will avail themselves to locate some new high-majors who will become increasingly prominent in the coming months.
For me, though, I’ll open Friday front and center for Jackson, whom I haven’t watched in person since last summer. Meanwhile, some excellent underclassmen will be attending as well and will further our knowledge baseline for the 2017 and 2018 classes.
Evan Daniels, Brian Snow, Josh Gershon and Rob Harrington contributed to this article