Hidden Gems Showcase – Recap

30 Sep

TDP’s Brad Konerman and Corey Albertson spent Saturday afternoon in Columbus for Lucius Jones’ “Hidden Gems Showcase”. The showcase was a great event, which is mostly geared towards Division II and III level college prospects looking to secure offers going into the school season. Along with NCAA rules, over 50 college coaches from the Division II and III levels flooded the gym at Thomas Worthington High School. Here are some of the top performers that Triple Double Prospects had a chance to evaluate.

Brad’s Take:

  • CJ Bussey – ’13 PG/SG Toledo Central Catholic: Our vote for the MVP for the 2013 class. CJ made plays consistently off the bounce and showed good leadership from the point position. His ability to make quality decisions with the ball and play at a high level of consistency are his keys. CJ played at a high level for a Division II prospect on Saturday, and could garner some Division I interest.

    CJ Bussey

  • Matt Gump – ’13 SF Bellefontaine: Matt was a key commodity for many D3 programs in attendance. Has a reported 3.9 GPA along with a high level ACT score. Will be a solid get for any of those schools because he is one of the best pure shooters in Ohio, and has a high basketball IQ.
  • Ellis Williams – 6’8 PF/C Columbus South: Williams is already committed to Division I Bryant, in Rhode Island, making him one of three Division I commits in attendance (along with Toledo Rogers senior guards Clemmye Owens and Tony Kynard; both of whom are committed to Bethune-Cookman). Ellis is a wide body who looks the part of an impact post player. Was clearly the biggest player on the court in every game. Needs to become more productive, and play with a high motor, to make an immediate impact at the college level.
  • Austin Gardner – ’13 PG Toledo St. Johns: This is the kind of event that separates solid Division II players with guys that can play Division I in the right situation. While Austin would have a sure-fire high level D2 career, he has a chance to play D1. His recruitment still includes 4-5 D1’s and every Ohio D2. Saturday, Austin shot the ball well from deep, showed an ability to use pace to create scoring opportunities and finished well around the basket.
  • Tyler Stern – ’13 SF/PF Columbus Worthington Kilbourne:  One of the most talked about players at this event. He is long and active with good size and athleticism at 6’7. Stern’s ball-skills are still coming along, but he is making strides. May have improved his stock as much as anyone at the event. He is a late riser on the recruiting circuit.
  • Nick Wells – ’13 SF/PF Akron St Vincent St Mary: The best Division III prospect we saw. Could work his way into a potential Division II offer. Love his game because he plays with such toughness and energy. Out worked and out produced more talented guys all day. Plays for a great high school program with Coach Joyce.
  • Fadil Robinson – ’14 PF Toledo Rogers: This was our first introduction to Fadil. H is a very solid 6’6 forward with strength, who is active and rebounds. He showed enough skill to see where his potential lies. At worst, Fadil is a Division II surefire prospect after his improvement over the last 8 months.
  • Nate Harris – ’14 PF Toledo Central Catholic: Athletic post who looks the part of a mid-major Division I prospect. His skills are catching up with his frame. Wasn’t at his best Saturday but still showed great promise and, as usual, was very good in the rebounding game. Coaches in attendance loved his size and athleticism.
  • Anthony Glover – ’14 PG/SG Toledo St. Johns: Anthony was a scoring machine early on in the day. He was followed closely by a conglomerate of Division II head and assistant coaches. Comes from a great high school program and will be a solid get. Will be a better collegiate performer than in high school, has the physical tools to really become a lock down guard at the next level defensively.
  • Robert Caldwell – ’14 PG Dayton Stivers: Tough guard who can get a lot done off the bounce.  Can finish plays at the rim but may be the best distributor we saw. Caldwell also really shot the ball well, including knocking down four straight three-pointers off the bounce in his first game.Team guy.

    Roderick Caldwell

  • Esa Ahmed – ’15 SF/PF Shaker Heights: Esa is the best inside-outside player in the sophomore class. Looks like a young Jared Sullinger with his frame, and has the game to back it up. Was dominant in the showcase.
  • Rodrick Caldwell – ’16 PG Dayton Stivers – All around guard who is a sure-fire future Division I player. Played well against older competition, and showed good maturity with his decision making for a younger point guard. Will be one of the best in the 2016 class in Ohio.

Corey’s Call:

  • David Dunnigan – ’15 PF Cleveland Midpark: In our first evaluation of Dunnigan, the 6’5 forward showed a lot of potential to become a solid inside-outside threat. Dunnigan has wide shoulders, can move his feet, and showed nice touch on his jumper. We’ll be excited to see more of the young sophomore, as will the Division II college coaches who watched him on Saturday.
  • Lloyd Chatman – ’15 PG Columbus Reynoldsburg: We already knew that Chatman was one of the top point guards in the sophomore class; what we didn’t know is that he can really score the ball from mid and deep range. Showing a nice ability to create space with his dribble and step-back moves, Chatman shot the ball well from deep while also running his team. At 5’9 he doesn’t have great size yet, but he projects as one of the top young guards in Ohio.
  • Isaiah Walton – ’14 PG/SG Elyria: Walton has grown to 6’3, improved his athleticism, and is one of the more talented guards in Ohio in the junior class. He’s going to have to continue to improve as a decision maker in creating opportunities for his teammates, but he’s very good at putting pressure on the rim as a scorer. With his new size, Walton can finish over forwards on the interior or transition; and looks like a prospect who could become a Division I player.
  • Brandon Bapst – ’13 SF Columbus Grove City: Bapst is one of our favorite Division II recruits with his versatile skill set, and excellent athleticism. He’s 6’5 and knows how to play without the ball. Excelling as a rebounder, screener and cutter; Bapst finds easy baskets around the rim and is also a very good mid-range shooter. He might now wow you, but Bapst is a big time playmaker.

    Tyler Stern

  • Kyjuan Grace – ’13 PG Columbus Westland: Speedy guard that can make plays in the transition game, the 6’0 Grace is a tough guard who loves to defend. Division II coaches should keep an eye on him because of his leadership and ability to defend. Would like to see him continue to be productive in half-court offense, but he has the speed to penetrate and get to the rim.
  • Devon Price – ’13 SG Columbus Pickerington North: Folks in Columbus have been raving about Price’s shot-making abilities for some time, but in previous viewings he’s been cold while TDP has watched. Saturday Price showed why he is known as a prolific scorer as the 6’3 wing shot it well from distance, showed off a stop and pop game in the mid-range and displayed athleticism in attacking the basket. While he needs to get better at creating for his teammates, Price is a true Hidden Gem for Division II coaches to hone in on.
  • Preston Williams – ’13 PG Youngstown Ursuline: Quick guard with a fiery attitude, leadership ability and a good defensive mindset. Didn’t see Williams shoot the ball particularly well, but he made up for it by scoring around the rim; and creating for teammates, which was a skill that several guards didn’t show much of in the showcase setting. He’s an interesting prospect that Division II coaches from the region should consider taking a look at.
  • Troy Mundy – ’13 SG Columbus Gahanna Lincoln: Mundy is a tough shooter and defender who has floated under the radar. He’s not a great athlete, but he’s smart and competes; making him a nice role player for a team at the Division III level. Mundy was one of the more consistent guards that we saw on Saturday.
  • These three class of 2016 Columbus area prospects – Warren Yates (Gahnna Lincoln PG), DJ Tyree (Pickerington Central PG) and Nick Ward (Gahanna Lincoln PF) – all look to have bright futures. Playing against older competition, all three prospects showed flashes of success; and could easily make impacts at their school’s this season at the varsity level.
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