Scouting Report Of Top Illini BB Prospects

Many of the best prospects in the Chicago area displayed their talents over two days at Attack Athletics recently. There were countless Illini recruiting targets present, and we break them down in this scouting report.

The 2011 DePaul Team Camp Scouting Report from Attack Athletics in Chicago, Illinois.

Class of 2012

DeJuan Marrero, 6'-6", small forward (Bowman Academy)

Marrero joined his team right before the playoffs started and helped lead it to the championship in limited play after a back injury. He powers his way to the hoop with solid handles. Marrero is active on the glass and is productive for his size. He is solid on defense and defends multiple positions.

Derrick Randolph, 5'-7", point guard (Hyde Park)

Rumor was, Derrick Randolph would be transferring from Whitney Young to Phillips, but he showed up with a star-studded transfer team for Hyde Park. In the first game I viewed, he came out hot from the perimeter, knocking down multiple consecutive three point shots.

He is extremely fast with the ball in his hands, and his quickness allows him to get in the paint and make shifty moves to slice through the defense. Randolph showed the ability to run his team in half court sets. It was a productive couple days for Randolph.

Steve Taylor, 6'-7", power forward (Simeon)

Taylor is a skilled four-man who has good footwork in the post and finishes strong on the interior. He hits tough shots, and his range consistently stretches to beyond the three point arc. Illinois has cooled on Taylor, but he still remains an option for Depaul.

Aaric Armstead, 6'-4", shooting guard (Hales)

The knock on Armstead has been his perimeter shooting. He is starting to shoot the ball better at the last two events I have seen him. Armstead is a beast as a wing slasher and has big-time scoring potential. He is fast with the ball in transition and finishes as a wing. He is a good defender and uses his quick hands to his advantage.

Keith Carter, 6'-0", point guard (Proviso East)

Carter has proved to be a good leader from the point guard position and makes fundamental point guard plays. He shoots the ball well and is starting to run his team like a point guard should. He will be a nice find for a mid-major.

Rashaun Stimage, 6'-7", power forward (Farragut)

Stimage is a strong and physical power forward who rebounds well. Offensively, he is best using finesse as he showed with a nice floater in the lane. His mid-range jump shot was an effective weaoib for him too. He is a mid-major prospect who could grow into more with a big senior campaign.

Class of 2013

Jalen James, 6'-3", point guard (Hope Academy – Illinois commitment)

I was already impressed with James coming into the camp and came out even more excited about his future. He has consistently showed insane speed and passing in transition, which he did again in Chicago.

In the half court, he got in the lane whenever he wanted and showed explosiveness in tight spaces. He moves well without the ball, exploding off screens.

The most impressive aspect over the two days was his perimeter shooting. In St. Louis two months ago, he looked afraid to shoot the ball at times, and when he did take them they didn't go in at a high rate. At Attack that changed.

His took and hit jumpers from all over the floor, including many big threes for his team. He has been working hard on his shot as he knew that was a major weakness. It didn't hurt he was shooting on his home rims, as he works out at Attack Athletics.

Russell Woods, 6'-7", power forward (Leo)

The rising junior is super long and athletic and finishes strong on the interior. His post game is continuing to improve each time I see him, and his footwork is becoming more smooth with it. He is also improving his handles, as he brought the ball up several times in transition.

Woods showed several spectacular moves over the two days. One was when he made a cut across the paint, caught the ball, shook his defender with a spin move, and finished at the hoop strong.

He came to play in his much anticipated matchup against Curie big man Cliff Alexander. He pushed Alexander off the block several times, but his standout moment was consecutive possessions where he started off by dunking on the big fella on one end. At the other end, he swatted a shot to break his team out in transition, and he gave a salute. There is no doubt Woods is the real deal. It is scary, the pace at which he is progressing.

Alex Foster, 6'-7", combo forward (De La Salle)

The first aspect which stood out was how much more aggressive Foster played. He knows as an upperclassmen and without Jaylon Tate, he is going to have to take on a bigger role.

His skill set is continuing to improve, as his ability to attack off the dribble was on display. It was no more evident than when he posterized one of the La Lumiere big men attacking hard off the wing, which was the play of the camp. I see Foster developing into a versatile small forward who can be a mismatch.

Alvin Ellis, 6'-4", shooting guard (De La Salle)

Ellis had one of his best showings at Attack. He is a bouncy wing with great shooting touch from the perimeter. His form has always been great, but his consistency in knocking down the shot was the best I have ever seen it. In transition, he is a wing finisher who is exciting to watch. His upside is tremendous. He is starting to grow into his game.

Gavin Schilling, 6'-8", power forward (De La Salle)

Schilling is a Chicago product who played last year in Germany last year. That experience has certainly been beneficial to his fundamentals and development as a player.

He is a strong interior player who finishes through contact. Schilling is active on both ends of the floor. He has smooth movements and attacks well with the ball in his hands. His mid-range jump shot is solid, with pure mechanics. His shot blocking and rebounding are what really standout, as he is at a very high level at both.

Unfortunately, when he was going for a dunk he landed on his wrist and injured it severely. He was wheeled off the court with his arm in a sling and will be out for the next month or more. He is a prospect to keep an eye on as the Illinois class of 2013 becomes even better.

Billy Garrett Jr., 6'-4", point guard (Morgan Park – Depaul Commitment)

There was a lot of pressure for the son of Depaul's ace recruiter and current Blue Demon commit to perform. He absolutely did that. Garrett shot the ball at an elite level both days both from mid-range and behind the arc.

He moved great around screens without the ball to get open shots. There is a smoothness to Garrett's game. He can play and guard either guard spot at the next level.

He finds open teammates from the point and makes good decisions. Overall, he plays under control and knows what he is doing. He elevated his stock even more with his performance.

Xzavier Taylor, 6'-9", power forward (Morgan Park)

Taylor is an athletic power forward who has some potential scoring in the post. His back-to-the-basket game is solid and has the potential to get even better down the line. He finishes strong around the hoop and is a strong rebounder, particularly on the offensive end.

A couple times, he showed bad hands dropping passes he should have converted for points. Despite that, I am really a fan of Taylor and believe in his upside as a prospect.

Sterling Brown, 6'-4", shooting guard (Proviso West)

Brown played very well at the two-day camp. He showed he could shoot the ball with great rotation from deep. In one game against his AAU coach Nick Irvin, Brown opened the game up with two consecutive threes and later followed with a major swat of a Garrett shot.

Brown passed the ball well around the perimeter, and his handle has improved. He drove strong to the basket several times for buckets.

Kyle Davis, 6'-0", point guard (Hyde Park)

Davis brought some firepower with him in the form of three fellow transfer prospects. He showed he could score the ball, especially in transition as he went from end to end many times, finishing with a quick left handed layup.

His passing is electric, and he does it with a flare. He loves to shoot the three ball and can be streaky with it at times. The mechanics are solid, and he makes a lot of contested shots.

I liked how he ran the pick-and-roll, using spacing, reading the defender and making good decisions. Davis is a top 10 prospect in the state and one of four high major points in his class.

Moshawn Thomas, 6'-7", power forward (Hyde Park)

Thomas was one of several transfers with Hyde Park, from Bogan. The long and athletic power forward is quick off the floor to the glass and proved to be a shot-blocking presence.

Offensively, he is surprisingly smooth when attacking from the wing. But he is not a great jump shooter, as he has a shot put release. He has all the raw tools to be a high major prospect, he just needs to put them together over his final two years of high school.

Jujuan Savage, 6'-7", power forward (Hyde Park)

Savage looks like an enormous defensive end prospect, but basketball is his sport of choice. He has a thick body and he uses it on both ends of the floor.

He powers his way through defenses, but other than that is fairly raw offensively. He is a strong presence in the middle of the defense, as he blocked shots and rebounded like a maniac at DePaul. Savage fights for position and is technically sound boxing out.

Lawrence Briggs, 5'-6", point guard (Simeon)

Briggs is a true floor general. He stepped in to play for an injured Jelani Neely and led Simeon all the way to the championship game. Briggs is extremely small but has big-time game. He will be a key backup for the Wolverines this season.

Class of 2014

Cliff Alexander, 6'-8", center (Curie)

BEAST!!! That was the most common word used to describe Cliff Alexander over the two days. He is a man-child with an unbelievable combination of height, length, strength and athletic ability.

Defensively is where he stands out the most, especially blocking shots. He looked like Dwight Howard out there at times, swatting anything that came in the lane like they were gnats. It was amazing how great his timing and anticipation were. He is truly elite in this aspect of the game.

Alexander rebounds at a high rate, snatching rebounds with his strength and athleticism. He had several offensive rebounds that he hammered home. He is still a bit raw offensively, but where he is at now is still pretty darn good.

He showed a nice spin move, finished a high-low, and sealed well in the post. I liked how he opened up and called for the ball and showed soft hands receiving it. The biggest problem was his guards not attempting enough solid entry passes into the post.

He also hit an occasional three point shot, but that is by no means where he does his damage. Alexander runs the floor well in transition and gets rewarded for it with slams.

The rising sophomore was the most impressive prospect at the camp. He has vaulted himself to second in his class in my eyes. DePaul and Illinois agree as they have recently offered, adding to his offer list of Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan State, and Michigan.

Johnnie Vassar, 6'-0", point guard (Played with Morgan Park – HS still undecided)

The Chicago native couldn't let this high quality of players compete in his backyard without getting some run-in. The prep standout from the northeast played with Morgan Park alongside his bud Billy Garrett. He followed up his breakout performance at Nike Elite 100 with another stellar job.

Vassar is a true point guard who makes his teammates better and is a leader on the floor, even at a young age. He has great vision and finds open teammates in the half court.

Vassar likes to attack the hoop in transition. He is excellent defending the opposing point guard with good footwork and quick hands. If Vassar stays in Illinois, he is the top point guard prospect and among the top few players in the class overall.

Paul Turner, 6'-4", shooting guard (St. Joseph's)

Turner is a prospect I was extremely impressed with when I saw Ferrari play this spring. He didn't bring his "A" game to DePaul. Both days, he showed up in the middle of the day and didn't look assertive.

He has the talent, which is evident in his bursts of brilliance stroking jumpers from all over the court and driving hard to the lane. I would like to see more consistency in Turner's game. With that said, he is still one of the top five players in Illinois in 2014.

Tevin King, 6'-0", point guard (Providence St. Mel)

I love King's game! He is a tough Chicago point guard who loves to attack the hoop with reckless abandon. Once he gets by the defender, he is going to draw contact and score or get to the charity stripe. He attacks the hoop harder than any young guard I have seen in awhile.

His jump shot is rapidly improving. He was consistent from mid-range and knocked down several behind the line.

Defensively is where he separates himself from everyone else. He is an excellent on ball-defender, creating many turnovers. He also had a huge block where he ran down the defender and swatted it away in a LeBronesque fashion.

In my eyes, he is one of the top point guard prospects in 2014 in Illinois. If Vassar stays at his prep school, King is at the top of the floor general board.

Erick Locke, 6'-0", shooting guard (Brooks)

I was extremely impressed with Locke in my first extended look at him. He attacks the hoop hard and absorbs contact well, finishing in traffic. He has a strong, thick body that helps him get in the lane, along with nice ball handling skills.

On one play, he attacked his man from the wing with a left handed drive and finished on the opposite side of the hoop. His jump shot has a slight hitch at the top, but he consistently hit contested shots from all over the floor both days. He definitely increased his stock at Attack.

Kierre Perkins, 6'-5", small forward (Morgan Park)

Perkins is a bouncy wing who does most of his damage off raw athleticism. He is thin and needs to put on some significant weight. His ball handling has improved, and he attacks the hoop pretty well. The rising sophomore is extremely raw offensively, but in time could develop into a nice prospect.

Class of 2015

There were three 2015 prospects worth mentioning that have major upside. Simeon has a dynamic duo coming in with Brandon Hutton and Dennis Williams. Kian Harris from Morgan Park is a 6'-1" shooting guard to keep an eye on.

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