Colorado has an abundance of two types of prospects right now.
The 2016 class has a huge number of 6-foot-4 to 6-foot-6 wings with athletic ability. For 2017, a theme has been smallish guards of just over 6-feet or under 6-feet, but guys with tremendous skill sets and plenty of speed. A few of these players, such as Braxton Bertolette at now 6-foot-2, grew several inches the past few months, but some of the top prospects in 2017 are still a bit undersized.
Nonetheless, they are outstanding talents.
Jaizec Lottie projects as at least a mid-major level prospect that could develop into a high-major point guard. He is No. 1 on our list of the premier under 6-foot players in the state thanks to his fantastic feel, playmaking, and burst.
Without further ado, here’s PHC’s list of the 10 best under 6-foot players in Colorado—regardless of class:
- Jaizec Lottie: The Billups Elite point guard was invited to the Adidas Uprising All-American Camp in New York this month. He performed well against the nation’s best with nine assists in his second game and eight points and eight assists in his final contest. Lottie is a tremendous distributor and is in the conversation as the top prospect in his class.
- Calvin Fugett: The George Washington guard is a top-10 player in our 2017 rankings thanks to his speed and defense. He’s a playmaker who is difficult to defend in transition and in half-court sets. Fugett recently received his first Division I offer from the University of Montana and is also a high academic prospect with Ivy League looks.
- Reggie Gibson: Gibson grew into a star during Overland’s 5A state championship run. One of the best ball-handlers in the Centennial State, the Colorado Hawks guard excels at changing speeds. Gibson shot the ball very well as a junior for the Trailblazers, but mostly shoots with a slower release that could be tweaked. Nonetheless, he’s one of the elite small guards in the Centennial State.
- Jon’il Fugett: Jon’il is much like his brother as far as athleticism with an elite gear. He is disruptive on defense, as well, and is one of the best ball-handlers in Colorado, excels as a distributor, and shoots with range. On a stacked Colorado Hawks 15U team, Fugett is one of several players who could receive a Division I offer in the near future.
- Marquise Johnson: Johnson is yet another great athlete. He earned a spot on the Aurora Central varsity, not an easy team to make, as a freshman and was one of the best players in his class that season. While he didn’t seem to make a typical jump as a sophomore, with increased focus Johnson has the talent to be top-15 in 2017.
- Brevin Brimble: Brimble is also our No. 6 ranked shooter in Colorado and is an excellent decision-maker with polished skills. The Colorado Miners guard projects as a high Division II or low Division I guard. He is an efficient player with a good basketball IQ.
- KJ Sapp: Sapp is easily one of the most gifted athletes not only in the 2017 class, but in the entire state. He has elite speed, and as a lefty, the Cherokee Trail guard is explosive off the bounce and adept at finding his teammates under the basket. At 5-foot-9, he’s one of the smallest players on our list, but his quickness and passing gives him a spot in our rankings.
- LeChaun Duhart: Duhart is another point guard who is a blur. A fierce competitor that guards with tenacity, he’s one of several prospects on the Hawks 16U Red team.
- Xai’Vion Jackson: Jackson, dubbed ‘X,’ is youthful in the 2018 class, but already he is outstanding at on-ball defense, is a very good passer, and can get to the rim. Look for the Hawks guard to become a key player for Eaglecrest, one of the state’s best programs, as a sophomore.
- Matthew Johnson: Johnson, a 2017 prospect, has blossomed in July with Colorado Connect. He’s a rising point guard who is a competitor. Johnson has been overshadowed on Rangeview by another point guard, Elijah Blake, but he can’t be overlooked any longer and will most certainly be counted on for productive minutes this season.
Honorable mention: Dalen Jackson, Tanner Ervin, Keisan Crosby, Cameron Pearson