Rankings Update: 2019’s Top 15 Forwards

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Posted On: 04/7/18 5:00 AM

They say the forward position isn’t as valuable as in eras passed. With the emphasis on shooting and versatile wings these days, the position has been reshaped. Players who can dribble, pass, and shoot are going to rank higher on the list for that reason. However, there’s always a place on most rosters for an old-school bruising rebounder.

[1] Alonzo Gaffney, 6’9”, Garfield Heights / All Ohio Red EYBL

Gaffney switched over to the EYBL circuit this summer. The high-upside talent is oozing with potential. He can defend multiple positions and still has room to grow as a shooter, perimeter scorer, inside presence, and switcher on defense. Expect Gaffney to land a blue-blood level program and finish his high school career as a top 30 national prospect.

[12] Taevon Pierre-Louis, 6’6”, Lorain / OBC

TPL combines a physical bunch near the basket with the ability to scoot by defenders off the dribble. His strength allows him to shoulder past defenders for clean looks. Although he’s not a reliable shooter, his rebounding and finishing ability is a game-changer.

[25] Alec Pfriem, 6’4”-6’5”, Moeller / Team Manimal

Pfriem has every opportunity to be seen by D-I programs this summer on the adidas Circuit Gold and with Moeller. He’s right between the D-II and low-major level. Although he might give up a few inches as a face-up 4, he’s rather skilled, active, and instinctive. Makes quick decisions with the ball.

[33] Cade Stover, 6’5”, Lexington

The consensus is that Stover will choose football over hoops at the college level. However, as he showed in Lexington’s Final Four run this season, Stover’s combination of skills and size cause mismatch problems.

[36] Evan Bainbridge, 6’8”, Stow / SMAC Running Rebels

The steadily improving Bainbridge has established himself as a very recruitable stretch 4 prospect. His height and clean high-release jumper give him a go-to scoring option. Also, Bainbridge is a solid athlete who can score inside at the rim or with baby hook shots.

[41] AJ Garrett, 6’6”, Purcell Marian / Cincy Lakers

Garrett is an elite athlete who could climb the charts in a major way after his summer. Regardless, it’s a crucial summer for the Purcell prospect. Showing improvements in his offensive feel and shooting ability could be significant.

[42] Noah Pack, 6’7”, Georgetown / Crossover

Although our viewings of Pack have been limited, the under-the-radar prospect does a lot of things for a 6’7” player. He can act as the secondary ball-handler, switch everything, defend the rim, and score inside and out. Pack has already been offered by Malone, but we believe any and all D-IIs should take a peek.

[48] Jackie Harris, 6’6”, Toledo St. Francis / All Ohio Gold

We were encouraged by Harris’s improvements as an outside shooter this season. His best quality is as a passer, whether it be outlets or in the halfcourt. Harris is also a quality rebounder and interior scorer.

[49] Jacob Drees, 6’5”, Hilliard Davidson

Drees is able to play on the wing also, but we like his ability to rebound and battle inside. Regardless of classification, Drees is a versatile player and one of the top D-II prospects in Central Ohio. Excited to check-in on his development as a playmaker this summer.

[53] Philip Alston, 6’5”, Westerville North / Nova (James)

Alston is a big-time athlete around the rim. He rebounds on both ends of the floor and uses his strength to get all the way to the cup. We’ve seen him put it on the floor for straight-line drives but have heard rumors about his ability to handle and shoot. Played the 5 for a good but undersized Westerville North team.

The Next Five
Tremaine Smith (Aiken), Sam Towns (Springfield), Chris Boyle (Columbus Academy / Miller Factory), Sam Emich (Copley), Eddie Colbert (Whitmer / M2K Elite) 

 

Other Top 15s
Point/Lead Guards
Combo/Shooting Guards
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