Thursday, April 20, 2017



As we indicated back in November 2016, this group collectively has to try and sustain some traction with their level of play. With the opening of the live period, this up-coming weekend many of area prospects will have a golden opportunity to seize some positive evaluations. Particularly after frequently being casted as subpar. 15-20 we view as possibly ready to perform in the right setting. We will do our very best to utilize all the information we’ve compiled to accurately produce a top 50-60 player ranking. Personally I find them pointless, for others it’s a way of labor.

1. Ayo Dosunmu 6-3 PG HM Morgan Park/Mac Irvin Fire- “Injured in the 3A semis, should be ready to suit-up soon; he’s a talented scorer with a sound floor game. I suspect he will be closely viewed all summer. Dosunmu is considered a Top 25 National Prospect.”

2. Talen Horton-Tucker 6-4 G HM Chicago Simeon/Mac Irvin Fire- “A prospect viewed as one of our state’s prized possessions; in the end, he will have a Top 25 National profile. We envision: Northwestern, Mizzou, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Arizona competing for his services.”

3. Javon Freeman 6-4 WG HM Chicago Young/Mean Streets- “Ultra-smooth performer, capable scorer always in attack mode: the nephew of Marcus & Darryl Liberty two Chi-town legends. Illini once had a shot at him.”

4. Tim Finke 6-7 F HM Champaign Central/Mean Streets- “Once considered the No.1 player in the class. Still commands respect as a revered offensive threat. Decent athlete with the abilities to knock-down jumpers outside. Vanderbilt looks like ‘a major player’.”

5. Darius Beane 6-3 PG MM+ Carbondale/Gateway Basketball Club- “Slithery all-around floor game and the confidence to go with it; at times too un-selfish, but brings winning intangibles to the floor.”

6. Kezo Brown 6-2 G MM+ Chicago Simeon/Mac Irvin Fire- “This lefty is a gamer, he has no problem pouring it on during a big stage climate; he can score slashing or knocking down shots on perimeter.”

7. Treavon Martin 6-8 F/C MM+ Chicago Curie/D. Rose- “This kid competes at both ends, offensive game is gaining traction; good shot-blocker.”

8. Raekwon Drake 6-5 SF MM+-MM Chicago Orr/D. Rose- “An electric athlete, capable of being dominant at both ends, despite of being under-sized in the interior. He’s a treat to watch; UIC*Texas El Paso type.”

9. Kendle Moore 6-0 PG MM+-MM Danville/D. Rose- “Dude has mad squabbles, he can get in the lanes & finish, he’s nifty in the open-court & capable of lighting up opponents on perimeter. Moore, could have a break-out Summer. Missouri State where are you? Valley type recruit.”

10. Cardell McGee 6-3 G MM+-MM Springfield Lanphier/ Wisconsin Playground- “Personally I was a tad disappointed in his play versus Morgan Pk in the State 3A semis. Floor game can be splendid at times, consistent outings would help his value.”

11. Drew Peterson 6-5 WG MM+-MM Libertyville/Illinois Wolves- “The floppy hair performer has string of intriguing offers laid-out, but his lack of big-game experience makes jury members, like myself, ponder when viewing him up-close.”

12. Xavier Castenada 5-10 PG MM Chicago Young/Mean Streets- “He has confidence & big game experience; fresh-off a 4A State title, tends to try and do too much at times, but does brandish at times big-play capabilities.”

13. Tamell Pearson 6-9 F/C MM Morgan Pk/Mac Irvin Fire- “Has a wealth of potential, good athlete who has learned how to compete at a high-level; gained some huge experience on a 3A Title team. High-hopes are out-lined for him.”

14. Demaria Franklin 6-4 G/F MM Niles North/ - “This kid has dynamite potential, plays with good energy, has demonstrated the ability to score in bunches when needed. Swingman respectable 3 pt threat.”

15. Justin Hardy 6-5 G/F MM St. Charles East/Illinois Wolves- “Graceful looking prospect, shoots-it on the perimeter, has good understanding of how to play. Above average athlete. Still un-proven, but viewed as highly regarded prospect.”

16. Chase Adams 5-6 PG ---- Marian Catholic/Wisconsin Playground- “Might be looking to move on from MC; Chase, knows how to play, now tighten defensively his effort has to be much better.”

17. Kani Acre 6-6 F MM Carbondale/RWA Program- “Coming off a really good school season, he built some more momentum while performing at the Spot-Lite Jamboree where he had a couple of sparkling performances. Kani shoots it well on perimeter now. His size & improved skills could land him in a good situation, upon grades are ok.”

18. Massiah Jones 6-5 SF MM Chicago Simeon/Mean Streets- “Superb athlete, he has illustrated some breath-taking dunks this season; solid rebounder & shot-blocker, impacts a game at both ends, even though under-sized. A stud in Horizon League or OVC.”

19. Armon Brummett 6-3 WG MM Decatur Mac Arthur/Team Manimal- “Smooth all-around floor game, good defender who can really stroke-it particularly coming off-screens! Can play on both sides of the ball. Little fruitful at times.”

20. Amir Brummett 6-3 PG MM Decatur MacArthur/Team Manimal- “Has a world of ability, just a little emotional at times; has enough talent to a degree where some would tolerate an occasional out-burst & antics. In theory, Juco may be first stop.”

21. Kaleb Thornton 5-11 G MM Bolingbrook/Mean Streets- “Explosive & lethal attacking the rim, where he finishes with either hand effectively. Now learning the PG position needs to be a primary focus in fine-tuning his game.”

22. Toraze Babbs 6-5 SF MM Chicago Uplift/Mac Irvin Fire- “Old-school enforcer type, fits the bill as a rebounder/screener, who also has become a reliable mid-range shooter. The Nike circuit will test him early.”

23. David Forrest 6-3 G MM North-Lawndale/Chgo Ice-Men- “This talented lad sat-out most of the season due to transfer rules. So, he has his portfolio framed ready for display you can bet. Unfortunately, most of his spring & summer games will be scheduled in the corridors of auxiliary gyms.”

24. George Conditt IV 6-11 F MM Chicago Corliss/RWA Program- “The big-fella actually has enormous amount of potential. Achieving his quest for stardom will exhibit some alone hours of time put-in developing his over-all game while also strengthening his frame. Our state hasn’t produced a 6-11 kid who can handle & make decisions on perimeter & shoot from distance in years.”

25. Sam Schafer 6-4 WG MM Lincoln-Way East/Young & Reckless- “Good looking prospect with some swag & game aligned well enough for him to have a break-out summer. Jumps out of the gym & shoots the cover off the ball. Had a really good school season. Being confident all the time will be his greatest virtue.”

26. Robert Harvey 6-4 WG MM Hillcrest/Young & Reckless- “Has demonstrated at times he’s a clutch performer. A smooth operator with a lot to display about his game this spring!”

27. Camron Donatian 6-3 GF MM West Aurora/Mean Streets- “Possesses leadership qualities as well as sheer toughness; always noted as a kid who could knock-down a big shot. Could play a supporting role somewhere.”

28. Zion Griffin 6-5 F MM Hinsdale South/Hooper’s- “This South-paw is a promising prospect, with some work put-in he could develop into prime-time contributor. Zion, has a strong body, he often punishes defenders around the rim. One day he could transition to a wing position.”

29. Tyronn Mosley 6-6 WF MM Chicago Orr/Illinois Stars- “A hard-nose athlete who can be used in multiple roles. Skills are improving & he is coming off a sparkling showing during the 2A State Finals where he and his team captivated an audience.”

30. Jalen Shaw 6-10 C MM Elgin-Larkin/Kessel Heat- “Thin but a rapidly improving big man, skill set starting to show some consistency; right now the strength of his game is blocking shots. Has to get stronger, Mid-Major’s in hot pursuit.”

31. Justin Boyd 6-3 WG MM Chicago Young/Mean Streets- “Played a supporting role for the 4A Champs. He’s a good defender & shooter. Understands patience.”

32. Tyree Martin 6-8 F/C MM Chicago Curie/D. Rose- “His skills aren’t too far off from his twin brother; he patrols the lanes well & contests shots frequently. Tyree, likely will be part of a package with his brother.”

33. Orlando Allen 6-5 F MM Thornton/Mean Streets-
“Did not finish off the school season in high fashion, but showed enough promise during the course of the season. He’s a versatile threat & rangy enough to go around defenders with length; capable shooter on the out-side.”

34. Xavier Pinson 6-3 PG MM St. Patrick’s/Mac Irvin Fire B- “We are looking for X to eliminate certain habits from his game; he’s got a wealth of potential; his slithery offensive game could be a plus in a Patriot League setting. Holy-Cross where are you? They’d be a good fit for him.”

35. Isa McGuire 6-9 F/C MM Chicago Lindblom/Young & Reckless- “This kid isn’t shy about trying to flush everything near the rim. He’s thin now, but has an un-orthodox appeal to his game. Yes, I think he could become a good contributor in the right Div I setting (Patriot) or Ivy League.”

36. Isaiah Fuller 6-1 PG MM Oak Park/D. Rose- “When he’s not seen playing in a frenzy, he’s a terrific lead guard, who has the abilities to manage his team. Fuller, can score when required.”

37. Kenny Strawbridge 6-1 PG MM Rockford Lutheran/Illinois Wolves- “Sort of plays in obscurity, but his club team will help him off set any lack of notoriety. Has some game in his repertoire, tries to do too much at times. The hype has been quiet of late.”

38. Naseer Turner 6-6 F MM Chicago Kenwood/Chicago Demons- “We love his potential, his better days of hoops awaits. This lefty plays with a nice flow, he’s un-selfish & a reliable Mid-Range shooter. MAC,WAC,Horizon,OVC conferences.”

39. Dallas Bryson 6-6 WF MM Peoria Richwoods/IBA (Kankakee Area)- “An offensive threat, shoots-it-at a superb clip, now developing other facets of his game should be his focus.”

40. Brandon Whiteside 6-2 G MM-LM+ Glenbard South/Chicago Demons- “Graceful with the ability to get buckets, especially attacking the rim. He is a under the radar prospect who can develop into a gem in the right setting.”

41. Barlow Alleruzzo 6-8 SF MM-LM+ Carl Sandburg/Illinois Stars- “Intriguing prospect, give you blemishes at times of what the future may hold for him. On court demeanor needs to show improvement, most of it results from emotional frustration. Can score facing-up on the perimeter, but needs to rebound & block-shots more; just patrol and manage the paint better utilizing his big body.”

42. Dannie Smith 6-4 G/F MM-LM+ Chicago Orr/Mac Irvin Fire B- “Coming off a break-out campaign; he’s demonstrated the ability to shoot the deep ball on the perimeter, and attacking the rim off-the-dribble.”

43. Ryan Davis 6-8 F/C MM-LM+ Conant/Fundamental U- “The burly fellow is quite intriguing prospect, he’s a skilled passer & deft out-side shooter 15-20 ft., but needs to impact the game & be engaged more often.”

44. DeAndre Heckerd 6-1 G MM-LM+ Romeoville- “Had a relatively quiet season, but continues to show he can thrive in an open-court system. We will watch him closely this spring.”

45. AJ Nixon 6-2 G LM+ Fenwick/ ?- “A fine looking athlete who had his coming out party during the 3A State Finals. Plays the passing lanes well & shoots the 3 ball effectively.”

46. Daylen Williams 6-5 F LM+ Danville/Team Manimal- “This kid could become our state’s version of Arizona Freshman, Rawle Alkins, a big strong body versatile lad who isn’t afraid to make plays. He could mask as a top-notch defender at the next level.”

47. Javion May 6-2 PG LM+ Chicago Hope Academy/Chicago Demon’s- “Big-time student-athlete, starting to come into his own as a legitimate division one recruit. Plays un-selfish, knows how to manage a team. Looking for a good academic setting.”

48. Vashawn Sims 6-1 G LM+ Rich-East/IBA Hoops (Kankakee Area)- “He’s been wearing out defenders this spring so far; an innovative talent with dynamite motor. Has demonstrated he can really score the ball whether his slashing or knocking down Mid-Range jumpers or 3’s. A good spring would bolster his stock to Mid-Major status. I have a feeling he will rise in our rankings.”

49. Ethan Schummer 6-6 SF LM+ Willowbrook/Illinois Stars- “A promising front-court prospect, had a productive Junior season, after opening some eyes last summer. Skilled scorer around the rim. This spring early on will determine what level he may be able play at.”

50. Kenny Pittman 6-3 WG LM+ Chicago Simeon/ ?- “Excellent shooter with good length, was utilized more this past season in a supporting role with improved ball-handling, his duties could expand to a more prominent casting.”

51. Deonta Brown 6-3 F LM+ Peoria Manual/Peoria Heat- “Sort of the sleeper type in this class. Has the talent & effort to rise above many of the well-known players in this group. Played out of position this past season; shoots-it well from Mid-Range and attacks the basket effectively finishing with either hand.”

52. Jalen Washington 6-4 G LM+ Al Raby/Illinois YBU- “Wiry combo, still raw in many areas but possesses a wealth of potential. His ball-handling needs to be tighter, never-the-less he gets where he needs to go. Decent shooter. Likely Juco stop!”

53. Jaden Gasby 6-5 F LM+ Urban Prep Englewood/Mac Irvin B- “Plays with high motor, enjoyed a solid Junior campaign. Out-side game has started to surface, attacks the rim with authority.”

54. Tyler Cochran 6-1 G/F LM+ Bolingbrook/Hooper’s- “Coming off a school season where he was banged up some. His duties resemble a supporting role; this spring he is already showing observers he can score & defend.”

55. Eddie Creal 6-3 G/F LM+-LM Joliet West/?- “Hardnose swing man, a competitor capable of being a defensive ace, his game is still raw in certain areas but he can make shots. His future could be bright on the hardwood with some work.”

56. Dontia Johnson 6-6 F LM+-LM Romeoville/ ?-
“College ready looking frame, kind of burst of the scene last summer with the Young & Reckless cast. Skills are still raw & he needs to be more engaged during live action. Tends to drift. Potential is there.”

57. Ryan Kustsor 6-4 WG LM+-LM Lake Zurich/Kessel Heat- “Very good student, looking for Ivy League or Patriot situation. Heady shot-maker who makes good decisions.”

58. Zee Johnson 6-2 G/F LM Elverdo/Illinois Bears- “This dude just punishes opponents with his athleticism. Had some dynamite outings where he amassed high totals in points & rebounds.

59. Brian Hernandez 5-11 PG LM Chicago Orr/Mac Irvin Fire B- “Lefty has big game pedigree; he made over 63s last season. Sharpening his decision making would be a plus to his game.”

60. Paul O’Leary 6-8 F/C LM Lemont/Illinois Stars- “Gangly fella, somewhat raw now but skill set improving and his future looks awfully bright. I see him being a player one day.”

61. Maurice Commander 5-9 PG LM Marist/Young & Reckless- “Need to see the court better, and find open teammates timely. Tends to look for his own offense way too much for a small PG.”

62. Kyle King 6-5 F LM St. Charles North/? – “A heady lad, handles himself well on the perimeter where he’s a skilled passer & respectable shooter.”

63. Morgan Taylor 6-0 G LM Marist/? – “A 3-sport standout, he may opt to play football or baseball; this kid is a good player who came back from an injury late in the season and rustiness showed in a state playoff loss to Simeon.”

64. Justin Pearl 6-9 C LM Danville/Team Manimal- “A mobile big fella who shows signs of being a legit college recruit. Skills are still raw but he competes at a high level. He may opt for football.”



Chicago’s favorite son, Charlie Moore’s exit from California after a superb Freshman Year sort of shook-up some of our area schools whom were remotely hopeful that the big gamer would stay nearby. The Morgan Park Graduate could likely surface along the borders of Kansas City.

Northern Illinois coach Mark Montgomery continues to plug the right pieces together in building his program, despite of losing out recently on highly sought area stand-out Lucas Williamson of Whitney Young. Monty, inherited a tough situation 5 years ago but things are looking-upward for the Huskie Program starving for a successful hoops run. Monty has a 4-year deal left on his pact and currently has two full-time coaching slots available, a contingent of quality candidates are vying for those open vacancies. He just landed Top 15 Prospect in 2017 Class Rod Henry-Hayes out of Zion-Benton. Monty, a Michigan State Alum, and a class act, has the fan base in DeKalb Country exuberant about their future.

Edwardsville’s Mr. Basketball Mark Smith had a quality showing in the Derby All-Star Classic last week, enough to where Coach K will visit him in the waning days. Michigan State and Kentucky along with Missouri seem to be his final three “The romance of recruiting!”

Loyola-Chicago head-man Porter Moser landed another Public Leaguer when Whitney Young highly regarded Lucas Williamson chose the Ramblers.

Morgan Park rapidly improving front Courter, Lenell Henry will take his game West, where he will suit-up for Northern Arizona.

Sunday, April 9, 2017


• Luke Scheffer 6-0 G St. Charles North“Starting to make a name for himself, a heady general!”

• Colin Crothers 6-7 F/C Benet Academy“First saw him at NIU camp, very promising prospect & you know he will be well coached.”

• Reggie Strong 5-9 G Farragut
“This lefty scorer is exciting, he’ll be one of the players to watch; avg. 19 pts.”

• Marcus Watson 5-8 PG Morgan Park“Played well in the State Tournament, has nerves of a burglar.”

• Nate Seputis 6-9 F/C Lincoln-Way East“A promising prospect, competes if he continues to develop, he could become the best big man in the South Suburbs in years.”

• Joel Watts 5-11 G St. Rita“Has a knack for making big plays and he tends to enjoy big moments.”

• Tyrell Hunt 6-3 G/F Curie“Caught a glimpse early on. Haven’t seen as much as the others; all signs indicate, he will be one of the condors prized possessions.”

• Micah Schnyders 6-3 WG Chicago Christian“Netted double digit scoring as a Freshman, a player who will garner attention soon. Already can score in bundles.”

• Aron Ulis 5-9 PG Marian Catholic“Can already orchestrate & manage.”

• Kee Hargrow 6-3 G Joliet Central“Got game & confidence to go with it, now he needs polish.”

• Bryce Hall 6-3 G Simeon“A talented diaper dandy, transferred over from Brooks H.S. He’s a potential break-out star.”

• Seryee Lewis 6-9 C Kenwood“A promising lad, transferred over from Marist.”

• Jayson Kent 6-0 PG Tinley Pk“Sleek performer, knows how to play, makes shots on perimeter.”

• Sincere Caldwood 6-4 G/F Simeon“A player to watch this Spring.”


“This group of youngsters, gives us locals some much needed enthusiasm. Right now, we can bill-it as a special group. A few of them have already successfully performed on the big stage.”

1. D.J Stewart 6-2 G Fenwick

“A marvelous talent, equipped with long arms & the ability to drain jumpers on perimeter or attacking the rim. Played well in the State Tourney.”

2. Nimari Burnett 6-2 G Morgan Park
“Already carries the tag as a big-shot-maker, which he displayed in the state 3A Title game. Has potential to become a high-scorer.”

3. Adam Miller 6-2 G Peoria Manual
“Explosive in transition, has a world of ability, but he doesn’t possess a keen understanding of the game yet. Miller lacks the big game experience as some of the others, we view ahead of him.” He’s an early candidate to surface in Illini Country someday.

4. Tyler Beard 5-11 PG Whitney Young
“A heady/seasoned performer; played a supporting role for the 4A Champion Dolphins, but look for him to have an expanding role next season.”

5. Shon Robinson 6-8 F Morgan Park
“This impressive young athlete, didn’t get much of an opportunity at the varsity level to express himself, but just wait this perimeter player could be highly sought after by his Junior Year.”

6. Elliott Sieger 6-0 G DePaul Prep
“This kid was an instant splash in his first year, averaging well over double digit scoring. His un-orthodox release & range startled defenders.”


East St. Louis heart-throb Jeremiah Tilmon requesting out of his letter of intent from University of Illinois didn’t catch many astute observers by surprise. East Saints finest prospects in hoops have historically never viewed Champaign as a destination to suit-up. In fact, our state’s flag-ship school isn’t even considered in the eyes of most of our Blue Chippers & their families to be relevant when it comes to big-time hoops. Northwestern’s hire of Chris Collins several years back sort of set the bar as a significant earmark for what administrators in Illini Country should seek. 38-year-old athletic director Josh Whitman, would have served himself well by asking the program’s gate keeper Julie P. for some much-needed advice. Now with big leaguer’s Travis Ford (St. Louis U) Cunzo Martin (Mizzou) lurking along the borders with their beefed-up contingent, you can truly anticipate the level of recruiting being at heighten. “Just to catalog the whole clip, Lawrence, Kansas isn’t far away either. Just saying.”

It hasn’t been reported yet, but DePaul is set to bring on-board Shane Heirman, the newly crown poster-boy from La Lumiere Prep as its new assistant June 1st. Well, the hired gun Heirman, should bring along plenty ammunition with his Prep-School bio. “He’s going to need it!” Within the brisk air of the Chicago climate, he will be quickly thrown under some serious flames upon arrival.

Ivy League-Columbia has added another Illinois player to its roster; Tai Bibbs from West Chicago committed a week ago. Bibbs, who we consider at the Spot-Liter a top 30 prospect in the 2017 Class should eventually team with former Fenwick stand-out guard Mike Smith, who just wrapped-up a stellar Freshman campaign.

Kenwood’s 6 foot 6 Manny Patterson pounced on opportunity to play in the Horizon League when he recently committed to Wisconsin Green-Bay. Now his focus should be cashing in on the opportunity by working hard & improving his raw offensive skills, mainly finishing better around the rim. No knock on him, because he’s a great kid and deserves the opportunity to veer out of the city. Uplifts brother duo of Demarius & Markese Jacobs will enroll in Hillcrest Prep out in Arizona next season. Both will have to focus on books & improving their over-all floor game. Uplift’s disappointing season stem from their inability of understanding situations and how the game is supposed to be played. Hopefully the Jacobs tandem will get some polish in the desert.

The state’s highly sought-after un-signed Senior Mark Smith is enjoying the finer romances of recruiting while just recently receiving an offer from Kentucky and having home visits with Missouri & Illinois. He’s visiting Michigan State this week-end and has Mizzou up next for campus tour. The Edwardsville stand-out will make a decision after playing in the up-coming Derby All-Star Game. Looks like Mizzou from afar.


While tuned in on the NCAA final game recently, I couldn’t remember a more botched title game. The officials seem to never adjust to the climate of play, therefore parts of the contest looked ragged, even though hosting the venue in football stadiums doesn’t help the fabric of any offensive flow. The horrendous foul shooting can be contributed to these massive facilities. From a revenue stand point, even a regular pedestrian can sort through the bottom graphic. “I’ve been diagnosed with enthusiasm deficiency, so what do I know when it comes to the state of college hoops or the demented NBA culture!”

Monday, April 3, 2017



Darius Duff out of Waukegan was impressive over the weekend. He took part in the senior workout and did more than hold his own. Duff, is certainly a player to watch in the North Suburbs. The Evanston area has become a hot-bed for talent, with the 6-6 skilled Patrick Baldwin Jr. leading a corps of talented prospects. Anthony Sayles a 6 foot 1 slashing Derrick Rose clone and 6-5 Jalen Butler who is headed to Niles Notre Dame are some players to watch.



“A couple of these guys already know where their destination might lead them, but coming to work-out for me was a plus, and we were appreciative of that, quite a few coaches turned out for this event.”

Jaylan Clark 6-4 G/F Thornridge
Marco Lewis 5-8 PG Lincoln Park
Kawansie Wilkins 6-4 G Chicago Farragut
Cameron Bowles 6-5 F Chicago Kenwood
Will Norman 6-1 G DeLaSalle
Glen Abrams 6-3 G Rich-Central
Sam Ulrich 6-8 F Marian Central
Justin Stovall 6-8 F Whitney Young
Rashad Johnson 5-11 G Oak-Lawn
Nick Perry 5-10 G Hinsdale South
Oliver McCall 6-4 SF Thornridge
Marquise Henry 6-0 G Zion-Benton
Noah Brown 5-9 G Chicago Farragut
Jordan Doss 6-6 F Hope Academy