Illinois is involved with a number of prospects who participated in this past weekend's AMC shootout in Bloomington, Indiana. Most of them are featured in the 2013 and 2014 classes. This report will break down the performance of those players, then take a look at other notable performances from the weekend.
Class of 2012
Gary Harris – Shooting Guard, Hamilton Southeastern High School (D3 Pride)
Regarded by many as the headliner of the event, Harris didn't disappoint. He used his athleticism to his advantage almost all weekend and had his shot working from the outside. He has quick lateral movement which allows him to lock in on defense as well as get past defenders when driving.
His ball handling skills are relatively good for a shooting guard, but he's better off catching and either shooting or driving.
Harris is a player who can "play above the rim" most of the time. He threw down a couple of impressive dunks and grabbed a number of rebounds. In his first game, he totaled 28 points to lead his team to the win. This was not surprising for a prolific scorer like Harris.
He isn't afraid to drive and attack the basket, often drawing contact to get to the line. One thing's for sure, it's hard to deny Harris's talent.
Mitch McGary – Power Forward, Brewster Academy (SYF)
McGary, who left Chesterton, Indiana, to head East, has emerged as a prominent big man in the 2012 class. One of his main advantages is his athleticism. He moves well isn't afraid to put the ball on the floor and drive to the hoop. He has a strong supporting cast on his team that enables him to do what he does best.
He made a few good passes out of the high post and was also able to extend possessions with multiple offensive rebounds. Physically, he's crafted to be a skilled power forward who can draw his defender away from the basket. McGary is no doubt establishing himself among the best in 2012.
J.P. Tokoto – Small Forward, Menomonee Falls High School (Wisconsin Playground Warriors)
Tokoto was one of the more impressive players athletically at the entire event. I wouldn't call him the top leaper (that would probably go to Indiana commit Hanner Perea), but Tokoto put on an air show of his own against Gary Harris and the D3 Pride.
The North Carolina commit finds a way to slash to the hoop and is strong enough to finish after contact. On top of that, he elevates very well, grabs rebounds, and blocks using both his leaping and his length.
For a guy his size, he has pretty good ball handling, but by no means is a point guard. For him, it's enough to get him to the rack, and that's something he looked to do all day.
Tokoto was matched against Gary Harris most of the game and was able to frustrate him from time to time. Roy Williams won't be disappointed with Tokoto, especially if he's able to improve his jump shooting ability.
Sam Dekker – Small Forward, Sheboygan Lutheran (Wisconsin Playground Warriors)
Dekker provided a large portion of his team's scoring despite being teamed up with Tokoto. The two formed a powerful one-two punch for the Playground Warriors. Dekker proved that Tokoto wasn't the only member of the team who has bounce.
Dekker scored inside and outside on dunks, layups, turnaround jumpers, and even a couple of three pointers. He's aggressive under the basket and hits the offensive glass well. Wisconsin typically gets players that fit their specific system, and Dekker's game has "Wisconsin Basketball" written all over it.
Eron Harris – Shooting Guard, Lawrence North High School (Indiana Elite)
On a team with Yogi Ferrell, Hanner Perea, and Jeremy Hollowell, it's difficult for another player to stand out. However, Eron Harris used hot shooting to grab attention Saturday.
Harris was on fire from behind the three point line, hitting five in a rout of the Rising Stars. In addition, he also split defenders and got to the basket a couple of times for layups. Though he lost a handle on it, he showed serious elevation on a dunk attempt late in the game.
Harris has deep range on his shot, even hitting one from over 5 feet behind the three point line. He protects the ball well and is aggressive on defense. So far his interest is only mid-major, but if he continues to play at this level, he's sure to get noticed by more programs.
Class of 2013 Illinois Prospects
Devin Williams – Power Forward, Cincinnati Withrow (Club Ohio)
Powerful. That one way describes Devin Williams's game. He's 6'-8.5", 235 pounds of solid muscle, and he knows how to use it. But just because he's built so strongly doesn't mean he isn't a skilled player.
In fact, Williams has a developed skill set that includes an array of post moves, a consistent jump shot out to 18 feet, and great court vision. He's most effective operating either out of the high post or down by the basket due to his great ability to establish position.
However, he can also take his man away from the basket and either hit a mid-range jumper or use a quick crossover move and dribble-drive to the hoop. He isn't the fastest guy on the court, but he still pushes the fast break by looking down the floor immediately for his teammates in transition.
Williams was the driving force for his team on Friday and had roughly 25 points, 10 rebounds and 5 assists.
Malcolm Hill – Shooting Guard, Belleville East (SW Illinois Jets)
Hill doesn't do anything flashy or spectacular. He just finds a way to get the job done. He's a proficient scorer, nearly outscoring the entire opposing team in the first half of his opening game.
He also has a knack for finding open teammates and is a good passer from his shooting guard position. Hill directed teammates around the floor and orchestrated the offense.
Hill is more fluid and smooth than powerful and uses a nice shooting touch to score. He doesn't shoot many outside shots, but that's mainly because his dribble-drive is so effective. Hill is sure to receive his fair share of interest before all is said and done.
Demetrius Jackson – Marian High School, Mishawaka, Indiana (MBA)
Most Illinois basketball fans know about Jaylon Tate, Jalen James and Kyle Davis as potential point guards for the 2013 class. Add another name to that list. Jackson is a legitimate high-major point guard who is the strongest of the group.
He stands about 6'-2" tall and has great floor vision, especially in transition. He's skilled at dribbling out of pressure and can change directions quickly, allowing him to get past defenders effectively.
He's aggressive attacking the rim and isn't afraid to mix it up with bigger players under the basket. Jackson is athletic enough to elevate for rebounds and is a strong rebounder for a guard.
Defensively, he stays in a low stance and sticks his man. He'll need to do a better job of getting around screens, but Jackson can play at a high level, plain and simple.
AMC part 2 will profile the 2014 prospects at the event