Last weekend we had 2 more opening tournaments in the Atlanta area; the RYZE Hoops Tip-Off and the HoopSeen Tip-Off. Both brought a variety of local and out-of-state teams that had prospects for all levels. There were numerous guys in both events that’ll be playing at Power 5 programs during their college careers; we go over such prospects in the final article reviewing the weekend.
2022 SF Julian Phillips (Upward Stars)- Consistent production is an important quality for prospects; Julian Phillips produces consistently and does so at a high level. One of the elite finishers in the 2022 class, Phillips averaged 24 PPG in the 2 Upward games I watched over the weekend and converted around the basket in a variety of ways. He’s able to work around the block and exploit mismatches but also fills the lanes well in transition and can step out to slash from the perimeter. His motor & athletic ability at 6’8” make him hard to stop inside and that’s why he is highly-regarded in 2022, but Phillips is also starting to show more of an ability to shoot from the outside and be more of a ball-handler. Continuing to prove himself in those areas will bump him up even more.
2022 guards Amen & Ausar Thompson (Florida Pro)- I had heard tons of positive things about the Thompson twins before last weekend and saw the praise they were getting to start the HoopSeen Tip-Off, but had never watched them live before Florida Pro took on Team Curry on Sunday morning. Their 1st impression couldn’t have been better as they combined for 27 points & 13 assists in a 80-44 thrashing of Curry. Standing at 6’6”, both possess unique vision and passing ability to go along with effortless, explosive athleticism. They get it done on both ends of the floor and seemingly every other possession or so, they were making some type of eye-popping play. The way they make the game easy for both themselves and their teammates has them towards the top of 2022 already; if they develop as shooters then the sky is the limit for the Thompson’s.
2022 PF Noah Clowney (Team Dickerson)- Clowney is having a huge start to the travel season, with great showings in each of Team Dickerson’s first 2 events. He possesses all the physical traits the college coaches desire and looks to have become extremely confident in his offensive ability. At close to 6’10” he runs with fluid, long strides that cover a lot of ground and he gets up off the floor easily. Clowney has finished with both force and finesse at the rim the last 2 weekends, but is also showing shooting ability that extends out to 3. Just as impressive is his ability to protect the basket, altering and sending away countless shots with long arms, big hands, and good timing. He’s making noticeable progress in tapping into the immense potential that he has shown at various points of his high school career.
2023 guards Isaiah Collier & Kanaan Carlyle (TSF Mack 2023)
After a dominant win at the 16U level on Saturday, I was able to see the TSF 2023 group again as they took on the Upward Stars 2022 team Sunday. There wasn’t much of a drop off in the production from either player, both Collier and Carlyle are as confident as they come and like the challenge of facing good older competition. The free, open style of play in travel ball benefits Collier greatly as he is exciting in the open court with the ball in his hands. He plays fast, can thread the needle for assists, and looks to be improving as a shooter. Never bashful, Carlyle can reel off some of the more impressive scoring streaks even as a sophomore. He has a full arsenal of shots off the bounce, locks in defensively, and keeps showing that he’s been adding to his athleticism. Guard play is crucial in the EYBL and a backcourt duo like them should result in success for TSF in the E16.