270 Hoops Fall League

29 Sep

Trey Woodyard

After finishing our Cincinnati based series of fall open gym on Saturday, Triple Double Prospects decided to take our show back on the road for the first time since late July, to get a look at how some of the top prospects from other parts of the state are improving. Today’s stop was at Groveport Madison HS in suburban Columbus to check out the 270 Hoops Fall League. With the best of the best from the Greater Columbus and Central Ohio region on site, we got a chance to see a lot of talent from the classes of 2020-2023. Here’s a look at five prospects who really stood out in games we evaluated….

Trey Woodyard – ’21 SF London: One of several prospects at the event from a smaller town outside of Columbus, players like Woodyard are able to use these showcases to maximize exposure which might not always come their way in the winter. Even with Woodyard being experienced with two years on the Nike EYBL summer circuit, these opportunities are still important, and the 6’5 wing from south of Columbus proved up to the task on Sunday. A deadly shooter who plays with a motor and can make plays off the dribble, Woodyard is an extremely versatile offensive player who can play the role of primary scorer or secondary scorer. Despite being from a smaller school where he is going to be forced to be ball dominant, Woodyard played in flow in both games on Sunday afternoon, but still led his team in scoring with efficient shooting outings. With his size and frame at 6’5 he’s a clear cut NCAA D1 prospect, as Woodyard has already earned offers from Miami (OH), Toledo, Cleveland State and Robert Morris over the last few weeks.

Desmond Watson – ’21 SF Columbus DeSales: If the 270 Hoops Fall League comes out with some sort of hustle based award at the end of the year then you can pretty much pencil Watson’s name in to win it, as the 6’4 junior wing was a madman on both ends of the court on Sunday. Even though he might not have ideal forward height at 6’4, Watson is so physical and plays with so much effort that he can rebound misses to score at the rim, finish in transition and draw fouls pretty much at will. More of a power player then a finesse finisher, Watson rebounded the ball on the defensive end and pushed it end-to-end for multiple scores, while also converting from the foul line with regularity. Even though he was called upon to be more of a scorer today, we’ve always been high on Watson’s willingness to buy in to a complimentary role on the Nike EYBL, as he’s a basketball prospect focused on winning.

TJ Pugh – ’21 SF Shelby: Like Woodyard, Pugh is another small town kid with the talent to stand out against the best from Greater Columbus on a day-to-day basis. At 6’4 Pugh is an above average athlete who can finish around the rim, but also showcased a skilled perimeter game with the ability to create shots for himself and score from the mid-range. Besides being a pure scorer with some physical tools to build on, Pugh also impressed with his motor, as he was aggressive to attack both the lane and the glass for physical plays. Even though we had never had a chance to evaluate him live before today, Pugh’s name is one being mentioned more in more in recruiting circles in the state of Ohio, and we expect that to continue as he is expected to put up monster scoring numbers in the Mansfield area this season as a junior.

Elijah Hinton – ’21 PF Newark: We weren’t familiar with Hinton heading into Sunday, and, even though 270 Hoops’ Zach Fleer mentioned his upside to us upon our arrival, we would’ve been unlikely to overlook Hinton once the action got underway. A powerfully built 6’6 power forward with a lot of physical upside, Hinton played hard on both ends and showed promise running the floor, finishing in traffic and scoring in the mid-post with his face-up jumper. While he has some skill facing the rim, Hinton’s best basketball at this point in his career is played by using his physical tools and strong motor to rebound and finish, as an early sequence where he corralled a defensive board, ran the floor, grabbed an entry pass and finished it highlighted the breakout performance from a junior forward who could see a significant boost in his recruiting stock very soon.

Sean Jones – ’22 PG Gahanna Lincoln: While he’s only a sophomore, Jones is one of the more well known prospects in the Columbus area based upon his play last season as a freshman and in the Nike EYBL this past travel season. In fact, Jones already holds a pair of NCAA D1 offers in Ohio University and Grambling State. But, when you’re only 5’8 and playing the game of basketball, there’s always something to prove; which is exactly the chip that Jones played with when we watched him in his opening game on Sunday. A blur with the ball in transition, Jones is a fearless smaller guard who can get in the paint and find ways to either put the ball in the rim or distribute to open teammates. What has scouts buzzing, however, is the consistency and form in which Jones is now shooting the ball, as he quickly becomes very, very difficult to guard with his combination of explosiveness and shooting. We’ve always said that small guards have to have big heart, the ability to distribute and either great speed or shooting ability; if Jones can continue to prove that he can check all four of those boxes then he’s going to be one of the most highly recruited prospects in Columbus in his 2022 class.

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