Phenom Hoops was on deck at Forsyth Country Day for the NCISAA Session 2 LIVE Period and it was great to see so many players in action playing in front of college coaches. Day 1 kicked off in what looked to be a terrific event, as we bring you a few underrated prospects, a few new names to learn, and which teams impressed us.
2022 6’8 Sam Perez (Trinity Academy of Raleigh)
For a team that is loaded with talent, 2022 Sam Perez is one that continues to go under the radar but plays a vital role for his team. He is a 6’8 versatile prospect that plays with a tremendous IQ, can stretch the floor with his outside shot, rebounds the ball, and simply makes winning plays. Just makes the right plays on the court.
2022 6’11 CJ Collins (Greensboro Day)
When you watch Collins on the floor, you know what you are going to get and there still is intrigue in how he may continue to develop. But when you talk about his game today, Collins does a really good job getting on the boards and being a rim protector on the defensive end. He uses his length extremely well and is incredibly active on the boards, along with his mobility. Collins also shows nice touch offensively.
2022 6’11 Iffy Ufochukwu (Covenant Day)
Like Collins, Iffy is an underrated big that moves well and runs the floor, while also really making a big wall in protecting the rim, creating havoc as a shot-blocker, and helps on the boards. But he is also a big that one can continue to develop, as he shows flashes in what he could be at the end. Still developing but he is a 6’11 big that a college program could snag and continue to work within the coming years.
2022 6’7 Marcus Kell (Legion Collegiate)
Kell has been and continues to be a player that is regarded as underrated. We are talking about a 6’7 prospect that has been known and continues to show that he can be incredibly productive, operate on several levels, and really score the ball effectively in a variety of ways. He has put up some BIG numbers in the past and continues to be a consistent force on the floor, which is why it is confusing why more schools haven’t got involved.
New Names to Watch:
2024 6’8 Bruce White (Christ School)
White is a new name to the scene but is one that many should get familiar with early on. Already standing at 6’8, White really captured eyes with his early feel and activity level in the paint. He has good hands, is comfortable in putting the ball on the deck, and has nice touch in scoring around the rim.
2023 6’5 Noah Van Bibber (Concord Academy)
Coming from Florida, Van Bibber is a name to put on your watch list for 2022. He stands at 6’5, plays with a natural feel as well as making smart decisions. He is efficient on the court and has good athleticism to his game, along with his ability to knock down shots, whether it is off the dribble or in catch and shoot situations.
2023 6’5 Dante Oliver (Asheville Christian)
Oliver’s length and frame are factors that capture your curiosity about his game but once you got to see him operate on the court, one has to add him as one of the players that you should see in the 2023 rankings. With a lanky frame and a long wingspan, Oliver showcased a tremendous ability in creating for himself and finishing with great body control.
2023 6’5 Harrison Poole/ 2023 6’1 Dakota Gordon (Ravenscroft)
The tandem of Poole and Gordon make the list as they were simply impressed with their ability to knock down shots. Poole has the long frame that grabs your attention but really impressed with his ability to knock down shots from three. Gordon was the other effective shooter on the floor, as these two were spectacular from beyond the arc.
2023 6’10 Michael Nwoko (The Burlington School)
A new name coming to North Carolina from the North, Nwoko has quickly made an impression on many. College coaches are quickly raving about his game, which is why schools already are offering this young big man. The 6’10 big was incredibly strong and physical down low in the paint, showing strong hands, a great frame, and playing with a physical attitude that allowed him to finish well and get on the boards. He is going to quickly be a name many will know at The Burlington School
Teams that Impressed on Day 1:
Trinity Academy of Raleigh
- This is a team that has the talent and the pieces to make a deep run and compete for a title. They were impressive on Day 1 vs. Greensboro Day, playing well as a team offensively, having several players step up when needed, and playing hard and making plays on the defensive end.
- Even in a loss, Coach Morris and Grace Christian really captured my eyes with their competitiveness. This is a team that will look to compete every time on the court and plays extremely hard on both sides.
- Emuobor certainly gets the attention but on Day 1, Ravenscroft certainly showed that they also have some shooters on the court as they knocked down 15 three-pointers in the win on Day 1.
The Burlington School
- TBS and head coach Ryan Bernardi look to be strong once again. The talent is there and many are young prospects, so don’t expect them to be going away any time soon. They play with a ton of energy just like their coach, get after it on both ends, and have several weapons to work with on the court.