Posted On: 06/16/18 11:00 AM
You could draw an imaginary line at somewhere between no. 30-40 as to where the sure-thing prospects end in the 2020 class. Even as juniors-to-be, there’s just not a lot of players who combine athleticism with skill.
At this point, good luck identifying a contingent of players who should be prioritized by D-II programs next year. As it stands now, they’ll probably have to go after players who we give low-major evaluations to.
So, we’re still waiting for guys to emerge and that’s the loose theme in the following articles that breakdown no. 26-50, 51-75, 76-100, and 101-146.
Raw Wings and Forwards
All of the following players either have collegiate level athleticism or size, most both. Furthermore, they fall into this category because of their lack of polish.
There’s a couple of ways to differentiate though. We’ll list them in order of where they currently rank, but where have they moved from? In a list of raw prospects, it’s important to pay attention to who has improved and where they’re trending.
For example, let’s look at no. 27 DaSean Nelson, who we believe could move into top 20 status soon. He barely played organized basketball as a youngster and hit a paradigm-shifting growth spurt before the ninth grade. Last year, Nelson played an ultra-simple role and scored purely with athleticism.
Over the course of the spring alone, he’s jumped from no. 27 to no. 38 because he’s scoring with secondary moves and showing more touch around the basket. Nelson is also becoming a more instinctual defender and rebounder. He’s trending upwards in a major way while others are frankly moving down because of complacency.
- Marcus Johnson (34 → 28) — Johnson has really found comfort in All Ohio Red’s new trapping fullcourt pressure defense. He causes havoc with speed, active hands, and overall athleticism. Receives a ton of minutes for what he’s providing as an irritant and fearless slasher. His handle has become capable.
- Aaron Ward (46 → 35) — Ward was low-balled in our spring update but is truly one of the most exciting upside prospects in the class. The next couple of years will be crucial, as Ward needs to build upon his athletic finishing ability and rebounding strengths.
- Brent Darby Jr. (62 → 37) — Darby Jr. has morphed into a stretch forward, which was quite unexpected. He’s clearly working on that one skill at the moment and we’re excited to see him stop settling for outside jumpers solely. He has the frame and size to score in the paint equally well.
- Dominick Moegerle (41 → 38) — The straight-line driver is scoring at the rim at a higher percentage but still lacks ball skills.
- Dalton Mischal (28 → 40) — Mischal has undeniable effort level, activity, rebounding, finishing, and even passing ability. However, developing into a capable shooter would boost his stock.
- Marcus Peaks (51 → 43) — A true rim protector at 6’4”-6’5” against local competition this spring. Peaks is super quick off the ground on his first and second jumps.
Players in the, “Raw Wings and Forwards” category exempt.
- Nehemiah Benson (47 → 33) — The Lutheran East big man added an Air Force offer last night and he’s a guy who could definitely draw more from that level. Benson is a pretty long 6’6” kid who jumped the charts for his shooting ability, which we didn’t see much of during the winter. Being able to shoot the pull-up at his size is impressive.
- Jonzell Norrils (55 → 36) — After another strong stint leading All Ohio Gold, the no. 7 team in the state, we had to rethink our Norrils evaluation. The strengths include upper body strength, dictating pace, finishing in traffic, game management, and a growing outside shot. He loses composure at times and needs to cut down turnovers, but how much of that is a function of his immense responsibilities on Gold? Bottom line is that Norrils can go and has been carving up the 2020 scene for some time now.
- Trevon Ellis (57 → 42) — The Cincy Lakers breakup has limited Ellis’s chances to continuing proving himself. However, he contributes in a number of ways as a combo guard. Ellis produces with the mid-range jumper, can rebound, and pass out of the paint. Ellis needs to be comfortable without the ball in his hands however, as he often looks somewhat lost in those situations.
- Hunter Shedenhelm (71 → 46) — Up 25 spots in the rankings and potentially more if he puts it all together for Pick North this winter. Shedenhelm is a known outside shooter with flashes of attacking the rim, perimeter defense, and rebounding.
Three rural Ohio prospects surfaced in the rankings for the first time in the no. 26-50 range. We see all three as potential D-II prospects come next season.
- No. 39, Jayvon Maughmer — The younger brother of Cedarville freshman-to-be Branden Maughmer has a chance to be special. The 6’4”-6’5” wing attacks the rim and finishes with size and skill. Maughmer can shoot the outside jumper and defend multiple positions. Fluid athlete but lacks explosiveness.
- No. 47, Jagger Haynes — Haynes is a tough rebounder who prefers to make plays for others out of the paint. As a scorer, Haynes can finish over the shoulder or convert open jumpers. We like his upside as he adds muscle to his slight frame. Decent bounce.
- No. 50, Kade Ruegsegger — Ruegsegger is a long wing that can shoot the rock. If he can take advantage of his length by becoming a three-level scorer, Ruegsegger will draw a lot of eye balls next year at this time.