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Posted On: 09/15/18 5:00 AM
We’re creeping closer and closer towards Sunday’s Top 250 Expo at Pickerington North.
As of Thursday morning, Asbury, Ashland, Baldwin Wallace, Charleston, Denison, Hillsdale, Hiram, IU East, John Carroll, Lake Erie, Marian, Marietta, Mount St. Joseph, Ohio Dominican, Ohio Northern, Ohio Wesleyan, Otterbein, Paul Quinn, Siena Heights, Waynesburg, Wittenberg, and Wooster comprised the list of colleges set to attend the event.
There’s only one reason their coming: the prospects. While in-state colleges may not be coming in exclusively for sophomores, this event is shaping up to be the proving ground for 2021 prospects. We have 15 of the top 60 players in the class attending, providing an opportunity for players to really separate themselves amidst a loaded class.
At the end of August, we looked at the Early Entry Forwards (click the links to read about those). Now, we’re looking at the other known commodities who signed up later that are bringing their talent to Pickerington North from noon to 5PM Sunday.
Cameron is a Lima Senior transfer who starred with NEO Tru Game this summer, an EYBL team and Ohio’s best 15U squad. Cameron has incredible defensive versatility for a kid with a muscular frame. He dominates the paint and can play above the rim a little bit as a scorer. Super aggressive kid that we think could maybe take it to players ranked ahead of him if they’re not locked in (he’s currently at no. 31).
Duncomb, the no. 5 player in Ohio, has tremendous upside as an interior scorer and rim-protector. The young sophomore dominated his age group in the spring before finding success against premiere 16U competition in July for the Pumas. He simplifies the game when he catches it in the post and has a natural scoring touch.
Etzler is top flight talent with multiple Division I offers. Kalen, the younger brother of Miami (OH) commit Javin Etzler, is an effective stretch 4 with a slight frame and above average athleticism. He’s a playmaker on the break capable of damaging opponents by beating opposing bigs up the floor. We’re also excited to see his versatile defense on display, as every team isn’t going to have another 6’7”-plus kid to match-up with.
A couple fellow sophomores appear to have more upside than Hughey right now. But in terms of production right here right now, Hughey is on the short list among sophomore forwards statewide. He gets it done around the basket as a finisher on quick moves and as a rebounder. Hughey can also extend his game and hit spot jumpers or defend guards on switches. Currently at no. 16 in Ohio, Hughey could make a strong case for top ten status Sunday.
Irwin is our top ranked forward in the class of 2021. He received an offer from Bowling Green on Aug. 20, his first. Irwin plays a lot like Indiana Pacer Domantas Sabonis on the offensive end. Similar to the Sabonis, Irwin can pop or roll of the ball screen, he’s a good rebounder, and plays with a good instinct away from the basket. Irwin also has natural leadership qualities, including communicating on the back line defensively.
The Expo is a perfect opportunity for a guy like Pugh — underrated small town kid going against some of his top peers in Ohio. Pugh is a power player who likes to score off the dribble and attack from the perimeter. We’re interested to see how his handle translates against this level of competition.
We only caught of glimpse of Raynor during the last weekend of grassroots ball. Nonetheless, he showed a lot of promise as a mobile 6’6” kid who finishes inside, runs the floor, and plays hard on defense.
Schmidt is handful physically. He’s unusually filled out for a sophomore and plays with great power and balance. His tools allow him to dominate as a rebounder and interior scorer. We’re excited to see how his ball-handling and mid-range jumper look in face-up situations, or if he will just punish everyone on the block — either way works.