Posted On: 07/29/19 7:02 PM
BLOOMINGTON, Minn. — Wisconsin prospect superlatives from the 2019 Prep Hoops Hard Work Finals…
Closing out his AAU career in style, Gittens took his game up to a whole new level this weekend. Gittens simply wants to get downhill and force defenders to stop him. He’s undersized, but plays with a bulldog mentality and has terrific upper body strength as well as above the rim athleticism. Not known as a shooter, Gittens has quickly improved his perimeter game and opened some eyes in that regard. Helping lead Wisconsin Rap to the 17U championship, Gittens dropped 30 points in a win over the Minnesota Comets.
Runner-Up: Brandin PodziemskiBrandinPodziemski6'6" | SGSaint John's Northwestern Academy | 2021State#232NationWI (Wisconsin Rap)
Jayden JacksonJaydenJackson6'2" | SGWhitefish Bay | 2021StateWI – ABC Young Lions
The Young Lions were the lone Wisconsin team to make the semifinals. Continuing to fly under the radar nationally, Jackson has been one of the best-kept secrets over the last six months. The 6-foot-3 shooting guard has prototypical size and length. He has so many tools as a scorer, whether that’s on the block, mid-range, or off the dribble from the perimeter. A kid that can definitely play his way to the Division 1 level if he can improve his overall athleticism and explosiveness, Jackson capped off a great summer in Minnesota.
Runner-Up: Cade MeyerCadeMeyer6'7" | PFMonroe | 2021State#237NationWI (Wisconsin Playground Club)
The secret is out. Bond is a bonafide stud in the 2022 class. The Tosa East forward wowed me in the last two outings, including a near upset over Wisconsin Playground Club in the quarterfinals. Bond is already proving to be a special prospect, but the scary part is, I’m not sure he’s even close to his ceiling. The 6-foot-4 combo forward is a plus-length, athletic prospect who can handle the ball and do tremendous things in transition. But he’s still developing a mid-range and 3-point shot, as well as a back-to-the-basket game — two things he did flash in Minnesota. If all else fails, this kid’s motor will take him far. He brings it on both ends for 36 minutes every time out.
Runner-Up: Luke HaertleLukeHaertle6'3" | SGLake County Lutheran | 2022StateWI (Wisconsin Playground Club)
Jeffery BrazzielJefferyBrazziel6'4" | SFMartin Luther | 2022State#186NationWI – Wisconsin Playground Club
Bond can go here as well, but in an effort to try and spread the wealth, Brazziel has cemented his status as a top three prospect in the 2022 class…if not better. The raw, but gifted scorer has added to his game this summer. A long-strider that’s been darn near impossible to keep away from the rim, Brazziel has improved his mid-range and 3-point consistency. In-state programs are already drooling over his upside as Brazziel gets above the rim easily and isn’t even close to being fully developed physically.
Aaron TenniesAaronTennies5'11" | PGWest Bend West | 2021StateWI – Wisconsin Rap
We watched Tennies connect on nine 3-pointers in a win Saturday morning. Killing the 1-3-1 zone, Tennies set up shot in the corners and let it fly all game long. Tennies contributed in other ways as well. A scrappy guard with a good build, Tennies rebounds well for his size and isn’t afraid to battle under the rim.
Others: Parker NielsenParkerNielsen6'2" | CGPrescott | 2020StateWI (Minnesota Select), Jack RoseJackRose6'4" | SGWestosha Central | 2022StateWI (Wisconsin Playground Club), Riley MurphyRileyMurphy5'11" | CGSeymour | 2020StateWI (Wisconsin Crusaders)
Shilo BowlesShiloBowles6'7" | PFWest Allis Central | 2020StateWI – Wisconsin Rap
Love seeing guys who have clearly been working in the gym and are able to apply it when the times comes. Bowles used to be more of a junkyard dog. While he’s still that, the 6-foot-5 forward has added a nice offensive package to his game. The West Allis Central standout is much improved as a ball handler and a shooter, able to even knock down 3’s off the dribble. A kid that gives everything he’s got for 36 minutes, Bowles is becoming extremely intriguing as a prospect and has Division 1 upside.
Others: Tyrese EnglandTyreseEngland6'1" | CGWisconsin Lutheran | 2020StateWI (Wisconsin United), John LovelaceJohnLovelace6'4" | SFBrown Deer | 2021StateWI (ABC Young Lions), Massimo MaltererMassimoMalterer6'0" | CGMadison East | 2022StateWI (Wisconsin Starz Elite), Gavin RalphGavinRalph6'4" | SFWauzeka-Steuben | 2021StateWI (Wisconsin Academy)
James RandolphJamesRandolph6'5" | SFWauwatosa West | 2020StateWI – Wisconsin Surge
When I first saw Randolph in Las Vegas last year, I really didn’t consider him a college prospect. He had obvious upside and a high ceiling, but honestly, I thought he was the type of the player that would never come close to reaching that potential. A year later, Randolph has proved me wrong. Consistently in double figures throughout the weekend, Randolph is showing signs of being a late bloomer. He’s got a very intriguing frame that college programs will love and now his skill set is starting to catch up. I’ll be considering him for a spot in the top 50 when the rankings are updated in August.
Others: Josh KruseJoshKruse6'0" | CGChristian Life | 2020StateWI (Wisconsin Academy), Davonte McAlisterDavonteMcAlister5'11" | CGEvansville | 2020WI (Wisconsin Starz Elite), Brock HeffnerBrockHeffner6'7" | PFGrafton | 2021StateWI (ABC Young Lions), Cayden Bintz (Team 1848)
BEST FLOOR GENERAL
I think Janowski might be a top 15 prospect in the 2022 class. He was sensational in two games that I saw, including against a loaded Wisconsin Playground Club squad. The energy that Janowski brought to the point guard position was unmatched. The Pewaukee native is very shifty and can finish around the rim at top end speed.
Others: Casey VerhagenCaseyVerhagen6'1" | PGSheboygan Lutheran | 2022StateWI (Wisconsin Playground Club), Javeon TolliverJaveonTolliver6'0" | PGMilwaukee Lutheran | 2020StateWI (Wisconsin United), Jackson NollJacksonNoll5'11" | PGCuba City | 2020StateWI (Wisconsin Academy), Dustin BeaupreyDustinBeauprey6'3" | PGMountain Top Christian Academy | 2021StateWI (Wisconsin Crusaders), Jacob HefleJacobHefle6'1" | PGGermantown | 2020StateWI (Wisconsin Surge)
TOP POST PRESENCE
Brock HeffnerBrockHeffner6'7" | PFGrafton | 2021StateWI – ABC Young Lions
A big body with a finesse post game, Heffner has come a long way since the spring. An old school post prospect, Heffner has the type of game that’s going to carry him well into his 40’s and 50’s when he’s running at the local YMCA. While it’s easy to get excited about guys who go above the rim, 90 percent of the game is still played below the cylinder. Heffner showed off an array of moves, fakes, and counters on the block and his footwork was arguably the best in the entire field.
Others: Leon BondLeonBond6'5" | PFWauwatosa East | 2022StateWI (JH1 Elite), Shilo BowlesShiloBowles6'7" | PFWest Allis Central | 2020StateWI (JH1 Elite)
Aiden FlynnAidenFlynn6'5" | PFMarquette | 2020StateWI – Wisconsin Rap
Flynn is good enough to be the feature option on a lot teams. But, playing alongside Gittens, Bowles, and Podziemski, shots aren’t always coming in bunches. However, that doesn’t stop Flynn from making the most of his opportunities. The 6-foot-5 forward shoots a very high percentage from the field and the Rap love to run sets for him that allow him to cut through the paint and get momentum going to the rim. Opponents generally have to pick their poison when they face the Rap and if they forget about Flynn, he makes them pay.
Others: Marcus TomashekMarcusTomashek5'11" | CGAshwaubenon | 2022StateWI (JH1 Elite), Nate AbelNateAbel6'2" | PGBeaver Dam | 2021StateWI (Wisconsin Crusaders), Marcus MbowMarcusMbow6'5" | PFWauwatosa East | 2021StateWI (ABC Young Lions), Jayquan HicklesJayquanHickles6'5" | PFMilwaukee King | 2022StateWI (Wisconsin Playground Club)