2019 G Alek West of Sylvania Northview High School has committed to Ohio Dominican University. West was the best available senior in Northwest Ohio before making his commitment as he had a stellar season on the court.
On May 3rd through the 5th a large portion of the AAU basketball world congregated in Fort Wayne, Indiana for the annual Bill Hensley Run N Slam Memorial hosted by Gym Rats basketball at the infamous Spiece Fieldhouse. On Saturday I tracked numerous prospects from Northwest Ohio as they ventured through pool play of the tournament.
2020 G Joey Holifield (Cardinal Stritch/All-Ohio Gold) – If its possible to hold multiple DI offers and yet still be a bit undervalued and forgotten as a prospect, Holifield is somehow it. After bouncing around a bit with stops playing for circuit teams All-Ohio Red and C2K Elite, Holifield came over to join the area’s best team in All-Ohio Gold. While it took a few trips down the floor to work himself into the lineup, Holifield dazzled throughout the day with his play on both ends of the floor. Equipped with a tremendous maturity and poise, he is a high motor guy who brings it virtually every time he’s on the floor. Has the ideal build for a guard at the DI level. Competes, makes plays for others, and can get his whenever he wants. Plays the game the right way.
2020 F Da’Sean Nelson (Rogers/All-Ohio Gold) – Arguably the most athletically gifted prospect in Northwest Ohio, Nelson displayed his patented bounce all day on Saturday, finishing numerous fast-breaks with crowd-pleasing slams. Runs the floor well, plays hard, and is an underrated force on the defensive end altering and challenging shots in the paint. Continues to cement his status as a must-have prospect moving forward.
2020 C/F Garret White (Maumee/Grassroots Elite Cincinnati) – One of the better big men in Northwest Ohio continues to develop into a serious prospect for the next level. White looked comfortable playing with his talented Grassroots Elite team out of Cincinnati, as in many cases he was the biggest player on the floor. Noticeable improvement in seeing the floor, and kicking the ball out of the post when a second defender comes. Rebounds well and outlets to start the fast-break. Needs to continue to work on finishing around the rim, but there is no doubt White’s development is headed in the right direction.
2020 C/F Dominique Cole (Toledo Central Catholic/All-Ohio Gold) – Cole’s play was steady, consistent, and at a high level on Saturday. Really scored the ball efficiently in the post, and showed his ability to step out and knock down the perimeter shot as well. Scored it over either shoulder on the block, displayed quick feet, soft hands, and a knack for finding the ball. Strong showing from him for the weekend.
2020 PG Ketaan Wyatt (Rogers/Nova Village-Alleyne) – Handled the ball for much of the game for his team against a very talented Mac Irvin Fire team loaded with high DI prospects and did it well. Confident in delivering the ball to teammates, saw the floor well, thriving in an uptempo pace. Continues to fill out physically and grow. Strong defensively using his length and quickness. Had a good showing for a team that had a lot of success on the weekend.
2020 G Caleb Smith (Rogers/All-Ohio Gold) – Really impressive scoring the basketball throughout play on Saturday as he did so from all three levels and did so efficiently. His confidence continues to grow and it shows on the floor as Smith seems comfortable in every situation. Has always been a sound defender, with good size to defend the perimeter and down into the post. Without a doubt one of the better pure scorers and shooters of the basketball that the area has to offer.
Others who stood out: Dante Wheeler (Elida/NW Ohio Basketball Club), Jonzell Norrils (Toledo Central Catholic/All-Ohio Gold), Caden Williams (Emmanuel Christian/All-Ohio Gold), Adrian Michael (Start/All-Ohio Gold).
2019 G Tehree Horn of Sylvania Southview High School has committed to Urbana University.
2020 G Josiah Fulcher of Lima Senior High School has received an offer from Western Carolina University. Fulcher is playing for C2K Elite AAU this Spring and Summer.
- 2019 G Tehree Horn of Sylvania Southview High School is receiving interest from Urbana, Siena Heights, Lourdes, and Trine among other schools. Horn remains one of the top unsigned seniors in Northwest Ohio.
- 2019 PG Terrel Bryant of Springfield High School has committed to Trine University.
- 2019 PG Jabryis Heidelburg of Fremont Ross High School has committed to Defiance College.
- 2019 G Terrel Bryant of Springfield High School is receiving interest from Trine and Siena Heights, among others.
- 2019 G Areon Evans of Whitmer High School has committed to Mid-Michigan Community College.
- 2020 G Caleb Smith has transferred from Toledo St. Johns, and enrolled back at Rogers High School, where he had been for the prior two seasons.
On the first official weekend of the AAU season, teams from across the state congregated in suburban Columbus for the All-Ohio Nike Cup. Included among those teams were a number of squads from Northwest Ohio, evaluations of some of the talents from those teams are below:
2020 PG Jonzell Norrils (Toledo Central Catholic/All-Ohio Gold) – Loved what I saw from Norrils throughout the high school season and he’s carried it over into the AAU season. His court vision and ability to setup teammates is special. He plays at a high pace but under-control, and has as quick a first step as anyone around. Smart and heady with the ball in his hands. Really solid defensively, and has a thick build that he can use to bully opponents. Will have the option to play either basketball or football at the college level, already holding offers on the gridiron from Youngstown State and Air Force.
2021 G Feisal Crumby (Toledo St. Francis/All-Ohio Gold Kizer) – Not many did a better job of playing their best basketball down the stretch of the high school season than Crumby. While he is a bit undersized, his impact on the floor can’t be questioned. On Saturday, although he and his team struggled for long stretches, Crumby provided his team with fight and fire even when things weren’t going well. Can be a pesky defender and has a nose for the ball, but Crumby makes a name for himself with his ability to shoot the three ball, and did just that for his team throughout the day.
2020 F Da’Sean Nelson (Rogers/All-Ohio Gold) – His play on Saturday was special and on another level. Gifted with elite athletic ability and a tremendous build, Nelson has all the makings of a DI college basketball player in the future. On a team with plenty of other college basketball prospects, Nelson stood alone. He delivered rim rattling dunks, and some impressive denials at the rim all afternoon. Capable of knocking down jump shots with a nice looking shot, but that wasn’t necessary on this day. The young man has a ceiling that can only be described as ‘crazy.’
2021 F Frank Waganfeald (Oregon Clay/All-Ohio Gold Kizer) – When talking about some of the more talented big men in Northwest Ohio, Waganfeald’s name has to come up in conversation. He provides a strong, physical presence, and can clear space in the paint. Did a nice job of that on Saturday, while rebounding his area, and finishing at the rim.
2022 F Sean Craig (Sylvania Northview/All-Ohio Hopson Elite) – Was a key, but unheralded part of Northview’s successful high school season. Possesses really good length and size for his youthful age. Pretty fundamentally sound in the paint, and finishes routinely when he gets his hands on the ball. Reads his guards well on the floor and makes himself available for the catch. Can provide a sound, anchoring presence on the defensive end. Has the foundation to really be one of the better players around for years to come.
2020 F Domonique Cole (Toledo Central Catholic/All-Ohio Gold) – Cole put together one of the better outings I’ve seen from him of late on Saturday afternoon. Equipped with good footwork and a soft touch, he was efficient and effective in the paint, and displayed his ability to step out and knock down the outside shot as well. Big bodied, Cole can be a difference maker on the defensive end, altering shots, and cleaning the glass.
2022 G Nate Houston (Rogers/All-Ohio Hopson Elite) – Houston is undoubtedly one of the most talented guys in his class in Toledo, and showed why on Saturday for his Hopson Elite team. Has nice size from the guard position and takes advantage of it. Uses the dribble to create space and take his defender off the bounce and into the paint. Smooth, lefty stroke from three point range. Has plenty of room to continue to grow and develop, but the talent is certainly there.
2020 G Mason Loeffler (Evergreen) – The young man has a nice feel and a smoothness to his brand of basketball. One of the best scorers in NW Ohio, Loeffler probably doesn’t get the attention he deserves. Really fits in and can play with anyone, picks his spots, and does so efficiently. Has a really nice stroke and can shoot it from anywhere. Deceptively quick, provides a steadying presence out on the floor, contributes to winning basketball.
Others that played well: Caleb Smith (Rogers/All-Ohio Gold), Adrian Michael (Start/All-Ohio Gold), Dashad Grier (Start/All-Ohio Hopson Elite).