Tristan Thompson, PF – Although playing against inferior competition, Thompson, a Texas commit, showed why many think he's a top five prospect in the 2010 class. After an injury filled summer, Thompson finally appears healthy and back in playing shape. He's clearly hit the weights and his body appears to be tightening up. On the court, Thompson was dominant at times, as he attacked the rim, showed mid-range jumpers and power dunked in the paint. The 6-foot-9 big man appears primed for a big senior season.
Godwin Okonji, C – Over the course of his time at Las Vegas (Nev.) Findlay Prep, Okonji, a 6-foot-9 big man, has made drastic improvements on the court. Offensively, his feel continues to get better. On this day he ran the floor looking to score in transition and his moves in the paint showed improvement. Much like the other Findlay guys in this event, Okonji played with some intensity and was aggressive on both ends of the floor.
Nick Johnson, SG – The Las Vegas Fall Showcase is an event that we expected Johnson, who now attends Las Vegas (Nev.) Findlay, to excel at. The 6-foot-3 Arizona native was great in transition and used his high level athleticism to finish at and above the rim. Johnson also showed off his jumper, and range, throughout the two games he played in.
Jabari Brown, SG – Johnson's high schools teammate at Findlay played well too. A strongly built 6-foot-4 guard, Brown hunted jumpers from mid to long range, but also used his strength inside, as he posted up defenders on a few occasions. According to the Findlay Prep coaches, Brown is one of, if not the best, shooters they've had come through the program, and he certainly had it working from 15 to 18 feet during the showcase games.
Joey De La Rosa, C – The surprise of the event was this 6-foot-10 big man. Although he still needs some fine-tuning, his overall game and effort level has improved greatly since our last glance. He was aggressive on both ends and played with desire. Although he doesn't have great speed, he did attempt to run the floor. Offensively his hands are improving, and at times he struggled scoring around the basket, but because of a high effort level he was able to grab rebounds, record tip ins and block some shots.
Winston Sheppard, SF – Perhaps the most inspiring performance of the Las Vegas Fall Showcase came from this 6-foot-6, possibly 6-foot-7 wing. Playing in both the sophomore and junior games, Sheppard appeared much improved even since July.
Throughout the two games, Sheppard played an aggressive and competitive brand of basketball. He devoted a good amount of effort to rebounding and he was relentless in the paint. After July we were thinking he was more of a face up four man, but his perimeter skills have improved greatly and he appeared comfortable and definitely capable of being an electrifying wing in the 2012 class.
Dekeba Battree-Aston, PF – A native of Australia, Battree-Aston, of Las Vegas (Nev.) Findlay Prep, is an active and aggressive post prospect. Standing 6-foot-7 and equipped with a wide frame, Battree-Aston battled inside during the two games he played in. Although his style is a bit wild, he's very aggressive on the glass, showed he's capable of shooting mid-range jumpers and enjoys getting physical with the opposition. Going forward he'll need to spruce up his post moves, but he's at the least a solid mid-level post player.
Roscoe Allen, SF/PF – Recently there's been some west coast buzz about Allen, a 6-foot-7, combo forward. Although he didn't play up to his potential at the Fall Showcase, it was clear that he's a talented D-I prospect. At this point he lacks the strength to be real physical inside, but he does have a decent handle for a guy his size and what appears to be a good looking stroke from long range.
Rashad Muhammad, SG – There's no denying the fact that Muhammad has some good genes. His father – Ron -- played at USC, while his mother was a track star. And his brother – Shabazz – is already receiving interest as a sophomore from coast-to-coast.
During our first look at the younger Muhammad, we walked away impressed and intrigued by the already 6-foot-3, 150-pounder. He's got good form on his jump shot and he managed to knock down a few triples during the freshman game. Muhammad already has the use of both hands at the rim, has good speed and a body that should develop nicely.
Nigel Williams-Goss, PG/SG – A talented and skilled guard, Williams-Goss has an impressive overall skill set. We think he can play some on and off the ball, but his future position is at the lead guard spot. He'll need to continue to learn the position, as he hunts his shot on a consistent basis, but he sees the floor well, has a solid handle and has a great feel for the game. With all that said, the 6-foot-3 guard can score. Despite a slight hitch at the top of his shot, he shoots it well and with range and he has no problem getting to the rim.
Shabazz Muhammad claims scholarship offers from Kansas, UCLA, Louisville, Wake Forest, UNLV, USC, Texas, Arizona and Arizona State. North Carolina is also in the mix, and he mentioned he'd like to hear from Kentucky.
Winston Sheppard has offers from Texas, Oklahoma, Louisville, Wake Forest, Arizona and Arizona State. Clemson, Mississippi State, USC, Oklahoma State, Texas A&M, Kentucky and Oregon State are recruiting him as well.
Cory Joseph, a 6-foot-2 floor general, looks ready for a huge senior season. The Canada native has a tremendous feel for the game, is terrific in the open court and appears ready to take over a leadership role for Findlay. Due to an ankle sprain suffered over the weekend Shabazz Muhammad was unable to participate. He's expected to be fully healed in the next two weeks. Khalid Banks, a 2012 floor general out of Las Vegas (Nev.) Cheyenne, stood out at the Las Vegas Fall Showcase as well. He has good speed, a strong handle and an impressive feel. Las Vegas (Nev.) Trinity International product Jose Rodriguez played well in the 2011 game. A 6-foot-4 guard, Rodriguez showed a nice offensive game and scored in a variety of ways at the rim. It's not often that you run into a 7-foot-3 post prospect. But that's exactly what Las Vegas (Nev.) Trinity Internationals Blake Vedder is. For a guy his size, he moves OK and has a decent set of hands. He definitely needs to add some weight to his frame, but he's a guyt that low major programs should peak at.