Posted On: 04/3/18 6:00 AM
PrepHoopsIllinois has extensive coverage of this past weekend’s NY2LA Sports Swish N Dish. Here we examine the 2019 class in part 1 of our look at that group!
SG Perry Cowan (Illinois Wolves)
I thought Cowan had an excellent weekend! The Illinois Wolves wing who is a top 10 prospect in the PHI 2019 Rankings has entered this spring with a more aggressive mindset and it showed. He was flying in from the perimeter to grab offensive rebounds. He hit some jumpers from mid-range which is an area he excels, but he wasn’t settling for it. Score in the lane on tough takes. Cowan established himself as a no brainer at the mid-major level.
PF Keenon Cole (Illinois Wolves)
Cole is an upside prospect from Streamwood that uses his elite hops to get things done around the hoop. Active offensive rebounder getting tip ins and finishes in transition running the floor hard. Showed some skill putting it on the deck a little. Jump shot has greatly improved hitting multiple off the catch. Has a bit of a long release. Finished with 14 points in the title game. Low-major prospect.
SF Bryant Brown (Illinois Wolves)
Brown is an intriguing 6’6” wing from Waukegan. He is coming off a productive high school season where he was the man on his team. Going back to the Wolves he took some of that mentality into Swish N Dish. Was impressed with how he shot the ball from the perimeter drilling multiple threes and was especially effective from the corners. Seemed a lot more confident shooting it. Off the dribble he struggled some finishing, but got multiple offensive rebounds with his second jump. Most impressive move of the night was a baseline take that he hammered home. Brown is currently a mid-major prospect.
PF Tom Welch (Illinois Wolves)
Welch is a 6’8” power forward from Naperville North that has gotten considerably stronger in his upper body since we saw him during the high school season. The four man has quality athleticism along with toughness around the hoop. Finished with a soft touch. Solid area rebounder. The kid has a nice combination of skill and toughness. Welch is a low-major plus prospect.
SG Marquise Kennedy (Illinois Wolves)
Kennedy is a player that didn’t have a great spring or summer last year and we saw some growth during the high school season. Over the weekend he looked like he is primed to make a big leap this spring with his new squad. He played both on and off the ball looking comfortable handling it against pressure. The 6’1” guard has long arms, an angular build, and bounce. He went up for a huge dunk and although he missed it showed a level of athleticism I hadn’t seen out of him before. Kennedy was tough taking it to the hoop on slick drives and also hit a wing three. Defensively he blocked a couple shots and showed some lateral quickness. Look forward to seeing how he continues to progress this spring.
PG Markese Jacobs (Mac Irvin Fire)
Jacobs played the best I have seen him in a year on Sunday afternoon in their game against REACH. The Kansas commit played free and easy. It was the first time in a while it looked like he was genuinely having fun. Jacobs was in attack mode getting to the rim at will. He was aggressive using his burst and quick initial step to get in the lane where he finished at the cup. Also was feeling it from the perimeter shooting deep pull ups and drilling them. He had 28 points in a win.
PG Marquise Walker (Mac Irvin Fire)
I came away very impressed with the growth that Walker in his passing game. The compact guard used to always look to score and dribble the air out of the ball. At Swish N Dish he scored with his pull up three and really distributed it well. Got others involved with crisp passes. Seems to be in a much better mindset as a basketball player. Low-major prospect.
SG Anthony Fairlee (Mac Irvin Fire)
Fairlee is the best athlete in Illinois. He showed that off to a big audience over the weekend. Fairlee lacks great skill, but his raw athleticism makes up for a lot of it. Excellent rebounder for a two guard where he high points them in traffic against big men. Potential on the defensive end. Showed that in a couple games guarding the best perimeter scorer from the opposing team. Will be interesting to see how he fits playing in the EYBL with the Fire. Fairlee needs to be on more low-major schools radar.
PF Rashaun Agee (Mac Irvin Fire)
Agee is an intriguing 6’8” post with broad shoulders and nice strength. He played sparingly for the Fire this weekend. Got the game winner in the first game on an offensive rebound put back. Other than that didn’t do too much. D2 to low-major.
C Francis Okoro (Brad Beal Elite)
BEAST MODE ACTIVATED! Okoro went to work against the Chicago Demons late Saturday night. He could not be contained one on one and in reality the only person that contained him was the ref with multiple bad violation calls. Okoro got deep post position on a regular basis and when he does that it is over! He is getting good at carving out space deep in the paint and giving his guards a huge target to throw the ball into. Okoro had an array of monster slams including one where his guard through it behind him for Okoro to slam it home on the break. Elite level rebounder that snatches them with two hands in traffic.
PF EJ Liddell (Brad Beal Elite)
Liddell started off a bit slow this weekend with an underwhelming showing on Friday night, but when he got it rolling it was on as the event progressed! The star of the state tournament and the entire high school season for that matter showed off a little bit of why he was named Mr. Basketball. Passed the ball well out of the post. His jumper was on point this game connecting on multiple triples. This is an area of his game he has really evolved over the last year. Liddell also had his share of rim rattling dunks. Explosive shot blocking presence. High-major prospect.
SF Terrence Hargrove (Brad Beal Elite)
What I liked most out of the state’s #3 prospect was how he stuck to what he does best. At times he has drifted to the perimeter trying to show people how his shot has improved (which it has), but he forgets to do what makes him special. Be a high energy forward with elite hops that outworks everyone. He did that with a variety of scores in the paint on put backs and quick moves around the hoop. He was solid, but not spectacular throughout the weekend. Hargrove is a high-major minus kid.
PF CJ Wilbourn (Quad City Elite)
Wilbourn who is from Normal Community took on the challenge of going against Normal West star Francis Okoro on Friday night. He frustrated Okoro on the interior with his post defense. The 6’8” post blocked several shots and altered others against BBE’s twin towers. Rebounded well fighting for every contested rebound. Seemed engaged throughout the contest more than I saw last summer. Offensively he drilled a pair of deep baseline jumpers that made you think he could be a pick and pop four that brings rebounding and toughness to the table. Needs to be on mid-major and low-major radars in the Midwest!
C Jermaine Hamlin (Quad City Elite)
Hamlin is a post with a physical build. Strong upper body with nice athleticism from the center position. Fought hard on the glass on both ends of the floor. Liked how he competed against legit D1 post players. Didn’t back down and used his strength and length to make life hard on his opponents defensively. Hamlin is still a bit raw offensively at this stage. He is a low-major kid.
SF Jamir Price (Quad City Elite)
Price is a shooting guard that was a key reason for the strong post season run of Rock Island. The wing is a bit streaky as a scorer, but when he gets hot he can get it going. Nice looking jumper that gets elevation off the floor. Price has the ability to score from all three levels. D2 prospect.
G Keon Jones (Illinois Irish Gus)
Jones is a 6’0” combo guard from Decatur Eisenhower that had a couple early moments for the Irish. He pushes the ball in transition and plays with speed. Small college player.
C Herb McMath (Illinois Irish Gus)
This 6’5” center from Springfield Lanphier started off the event with a nice performance. He is a wide body in the paint that has a knack for carving out space on the interior. Soft touch around the hoop and is actually a sound passer finding cutters. McMath was consistently active on the glass. He had multiple offensive rebound put backs. Small college prospect that plays hard and gets the most out of what he has.
PG Jaheim Holden (Hoops Avenue)
Holden had a nice weekend at Swish N Dish after coming off a strong showing in the state tournament. The small lefty point guard is just so quick and shifty with the rock. He finds creases in the defense to get through them. A lot of his points come in transition and often off the steals that he creates with his pesky defense. Possible D2 prospect with a strong summer.
SG Jay’Dyn Brown (Hoops Avenue)
Brown was relentless! The athletic wing has tremendous strength in his upper body and plays with an all-out motor on both ends of the floor. The Waukegan 2019 wing was impressive with his ability to rebound with a quick second jump and score on the glass. Offensively he was in attack mode scoring off the bounce and made regular trips to the charity stripe. Put pressure on opposing guards with his in your face defense. Hearing he is most likely a JUCO candidate.
SF Ethan Helwig (Illinois Stars)
Helwig is a top 25 prospect in the 2019 class. The wing is a thin kid that has some length. Plays well in the open floor scoring in transition. . Acceleration with the ball in his hands. Needs to add more strength to consistently finish better in the paint. Low-major prospect.
PG Trey Calvin (Illinois Stars)
Calvin is coming off a solid junior campaign at St. Viator which was capped off by winning the three point championship at state. Most of his points in the game we saw came getting to the rim and pushing it in the open floor. Sneaky athlete. He is a low-major prospect.
PG Traevon Brown (Illinois Stars)
For the Stars 17U it was a well-rounded win with everyone contributing across the board in the game we saw. Liked how this West Aurora guard played. The long and angular point guard used to be just a pure athlete that relied on that to be successful. Now the skill is starting to come along to match. His jump shot is quickly becoming a plus weapon from deep. Drilled a pair in the game we saw. Pushes it in the open floor and has the vision to find others. Also fed the post well in this contest. We currently have Brown underrated in the rankings and if he continues to play like this will see a bump in the next update. Low-majors should watch this spring.
SG Chris Burnell (Illinois Stars)
Burnell is a big bodied guard that has slimmed down some since we last saw him. Definitely a power slasher that loves to get to the rack and finish through contact. Gets to the foul line at a high rate. Burnell is a low-major prospect.
PF Marquis Ratcliff (Illinois Stars)
Ratcliff is an intriguing prospect. Didn’t play a ton for Bolingbrook this past season, but has some intriguing traits. Freak athlete with really springy legs. Ratcliff is really quick to the glass with his second jump on the offensive glass. The 6’6” forward is definitely raw skill wise. Could move into D2 territory.