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Posted On: 06/12/18 11:00 AM
After a long-winded and analytical piece on players no. 26-50 that published a couple hours ago, the summary on no. 51-75 that follows is a traditional individual-based article. The players involved remain largely scholarship-level basketball prospects. And there are still some identifiable trends within this grouping. However, let’s just jump into it with some of the most interesting prospects who we haven’t written enough about.
Eddie Colbert made an initial impression during his junior season at Whitmer. He led the competitive group from Toledo in scoring and impressed with his offensive rebounding, raw athleticism, and shooting touch in the paint. After all that, no. 78 seemed like an appropriate spot. However, we didn’t realize that he’s more of a slightly undersized stretch four that can beat matchups off the dribble. His versatility on that end moves Colbert up to no. 64. Last week, Lourdes became the first to offer. Anton Webb is the second highest rated newcomer in the entire 2019 rankings. At no. 65, there’s reason to believe he’ll move up given the exciting amount of potential. The 6’7” small school combo forward has a surplus of length and can really move his feet. Webb uses said tools to challenge shots at the rim and create shots around the basket. This spring was our first legitimate look at CJ Karsatos, who didn’t see receive significant run the two times we watched Upper Arlington this winter. He’ll be valued as a prospect for what he brings to the offensive end. Karsatos has a unique combination of height and guard-like feel for the game. Now, it’s just a matter of optimizing his gifts and skills by consistently creating offense. Our final newcomer, Michael Berner from Springboro, rounds out the 2019 top 75. He’s a traditional low-post presence with a promising athletic build. Berner runs the floor and plays his role as a rebounder, finisher, and large presence on the back end of a defense. There’s some untapped potential with Berner that we believe D-IIs and NAIAs should take a hard look at.
From the no. 52-55 range, there’s a group of forwards who impact the game with athleticism and are hard to separate as an evaluator. Our speculation is that two of the four prospects will likely opt for D-I football scholarships at the end of the day. In March, Justin Stephens told Prep Hoops, “It’s looking right now that it’s going to be football.” He’s received scholarships from the likes of LSU since that time too. Genoa’s Drew Bench is more interesting, as he’s still open to both options at last check. He uses power and hops to rebound, defend the post, and finish in traffic while being one of the best at running the floor. Meanwhile, no. 53 Philip Alston and no. 55 AJ Garrett represent a pair of high upside forwards. Alston has a much larger frame, which he uses to be more physical. When Alston drives, it tends to be just one or two dribbles from the short corner or elbow, and he finishes with power. Garrett has more of a chance to transition to a true wing with his agile movements, young age, and trimmer frame. The Purcell forward is also very bouncy.
There’s a lot of different types of point guards. You have your pass-first floor generals, those who operate best in a pick and roll, off-ball ones who spread the floor, and other variations of combo guards. Within this range in the rankings, many of those categories are represented.
Northwest Ohio is also represented in this portion of the rankings. This area has plenty of stellar scholarship-level recruits who often float under the radar. Between Drew Bench, Eddie Colbert, Ryan Nunn, Trey Syroka, and Alek West, four of the top nine players from the area are ranked between no. 51-75. Going into July, coaches can see most of the top level Northwest Ohio prospects on All Ohio Gold and Northwest Ohio Basketball Club.