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“Getting to Know” 6’2 2022 Jah Saigo

We’ve seen a lot of players come through our doors over the years, varying in appearance, skill level, and everything in between. We decided to put forth a “Getting to Know” series on some players who have attended events but still remain on the lesser-known side of things. Each of these prospects embody being a student-athlete and getting it done in the classroom as well as on the basketball...

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July Live Period Superlatives: Part Three

Best Defender: 6’0 ’22 Mustapha Shah 6’4 ’22 Elijah Burnett 6’3 ’22 Amari Pearson Although Burnett and Pearson are legitimately phenomenal defenders, Shah’s unique ability to mirror opponents through a combination of strength, quickness, and anticipation makes him an absolute terror defensively. He plays with a high motor and gets involved in the offensive action whenever necessary, but truly...

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Charlotte Guards duo impresses in Rock Hill

The duo of 2022 6’1 Landon King and 2022 5’10 CeDrek Mangum had it going in Rock Hill this past weekend at the Coach Rick’s TOC.  King is one we have seen multiple times before, with a lot of it being this past high school season at Independence. The guard really has shown consistently how much of a scoring guard he can be and help carry the load offensively.  His ability to operate and score...

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2022 Julian Kiett’s recruitment starting to pick up

South Carolina continues to put out premier talent each and every year and it looks to be the same in the 2022 class.  One player many could say went under the radar for quite some time now has seen his recruitment finally starting to take off. 2022 Julian Kiett has had a solid summer so far, giving college coaches a glimpse of his game.  The strong-bodied guard really excels in the...

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Talent to monitor: BMaze Biven 17u

The talent all throughout the weekend and the LIVE period was highly intriguing. College coaches could find next-level players of all levels, almost everywhere you looked.  One team that sometimes flew under the radar though was BMaze Biven 17u from Tennessee.  Getting a nice glimpse of the team in Rock Hill recently, there were a few players that should be on the radar for college...

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July Live Period Superlatives: Part Two

Although there has been a ton of excitement swirling throughout the last few months, July is finally coming to an end. Between the NCHSAA/NCISAA events in June and the consecutive live periods across July, all levels of coaches have been traveling, evaluating, and establishing relationships with these prospects. Excluding the lone period in July, we will take a closer look at a slew of players...

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July Live Period Superlatives: Part One

Although there has been a ton of excitement swirling throughout the last few months, July is finally coming to an end. Between the NCHSAA/NCISAA events in June and the consecutive live periods across July, all levels of coaches have been traveling, evaluating, and establishing relationships with these prospects. Excluding the lone period in July, we will take a closer look at a slew of players...

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Dre’Shaun Brown Calls it for St. Augustine

On Sunday, Piedmont Classical and NC Gaters guard Dre’Shaun Brown committed to St. Augustine over various other Division II and III programs. After watching him closely and covering him extensively over the last few years, Phenom Hoops decided to sit down and ask about what ultimately went into his decision. Let’s take a closer look… PH: Talk about your journey and everything that went into this...

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Balance Continuing to Pay Dividends for Big Shots Winston

This past weekend, Big Shots Winston-Salem made the short trip out to the Rise Indoor Facility in Advance, North Carolina to wrap up their final live period and conclude the month of July. Regardless of opponent, this group has found ways to compete with anyone in their path over the last four months. Their talent, chemistry, unselfish approach, and ability to hurt opponents in a variety of...

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Bendel’s Best: Hardwood Classic

This past weekend, Phenom Hoops hosted two separate events (Advance and Rock Hill) to wrap up the final live period and begin concluding the busy month of July. Folks were constantly buzzing about the amount of sheer talent on display in Rock Hill, but there was still more than enough appeal for various college coaches to make the trip to Advance. Programs of all levels came through the Rise...

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Coach Rick’s TOC: Bright future for young prospects

The Coach Rick's TOC was off the charts with talent. One thing is for sure is that the future around the region looks to be bright, as there were several young prospects that really captured our eyes and should be household names. Check out a few young players that will be ones you will want to know.

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2023 Aaron Hall turns heads at Summer Havoc; earns first offer and interests

During the LIVE Period, players had the opportunity to play in front of college coaches and there certainly isn’t anything better than playing well, earning interest from schools, and ultimately securing an offer. That is what happened recently for 2023 Aaron Hall with Team United, as he racked in an offer from Radford and opened many other programs’ eyes with his play. Phenom spoke...

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POB’s Eye Catchers from Coach Rick’s TOC (Day 3)

Paul McNeil 2023 Cam Oates (Garner Road): Now part of the 2023 class, Oates is an intriguing guard to keep tabs on with how he plays and how his game is maturing offensively.  He still brings a toughness to the floor and is scrappy on both ends.  But Oates is showing that he can really step up and be a consistent offensive threat from all areas. On Day 3, his perimeter game was...

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Player Standouts from Phenom Hardwood Classic (Day 2)

by: Ethan Reece 2024 Richard Goods (Carolina Clutch) Richard impresses me in an abundance of ways every time out on the court. Was able to see him in both games today, and one thing he did really well was run the court. He makes it easy for his teammates to find him in transition which creates so many opportunities as he’s also a gifted passer with soft touch when he finds his teammates right...

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Player Standouts from Coach Rick’s TOC (Day 3, Part 2)

By: Heath Gulledge 2021 6’4 Glenn Bynum (Mint Hill Lakers) Bynum is a really athletic guard who can score on all three levels. He makes teams respect his jump shot and because of this, driving lanes open up for him to get to the rim. He knows how to use the dribble to get into the mid-range area to get step-backs and shoot over defenders. I like the craftiness he has around the rim when taller...

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Noah’s Hoopers from Coach Rick’s TOC (Day 3, Part 2)

By: Noah Hooper 6’3 2022 Lebron Thomas (FIBA 2022) When I watch Thoams, the first thing I notice is how he uses his lightning speed and athleticism to get downhill at will and use his strong lower body to finish through contact. The way he was able to use this natural ability to make plays for himself and his teammates was impressive as it really showed in transition. Not only does Thomas do an...

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Sean’s Standouts from Coach Rick’s TOC (Day 3, Part 2)

Jaari Outlaw By: Sean Halloran 2022 Jaxon Ellingsworth (Brand X 17U) Ellingsworth is known to be one of the top unsigned big men in the area, as he continues to impress college coaches this weekend with his play. Ellingsworth in a 6’8, long, mobile-forward who is an effective force on the offensive and defensive glass. He showed he can stretch the floor a little bit offensively this weekend and...

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Player Standouts at Day Two of Phenom Hardwood Classic

6’6 ’22 Max Bullard (New Light Disciples) Although the New Light Disciples continue to be extremely balanced, Bullard has already found a ton of opportunities as the newest addition to this roster. He’s long, skilled, and athletic with a fairly well-rounded identity on both ends of the floor. Bullard displays IQ, toughness, and regular flashes of versatility. He’s a quality defender, rebounder,...

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Dawkins’ Standouts from Coach Rick’s TOC (Day 3, Part 2)

By: DeAjai Dawkins 6’3 2022 Jackson Holt (Big Shots 17U/Moravian Prep)  Jackson is a well-conditioned, smooth shooting guard that knocks down open perimeter shots at a high rate of efficiency. I believe he is one of, if not, the best shooter(s) on a team full of talented marksmen. In his senior season we see him receiving a ton of opportunities to show coaches at the next level his shot-making...

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Dawkins’ Standouts from Coach Rick’s TOC (Day 3, Part 1)

By; DeAjai Dawkins 5’10 2022 Bobby Taylor (Upward Stars 3SSB 17U/DW Daniel) Taylor is a quick-thinking lead guard that manipulates defenses with pass fakes. I believe that Smart has the ability to play at the next level given his toughness, IQ, and facilitative ability. Put the ball in the basket well in day 3, really showed me an ability to score that I was looking to see.  6’2 2024 Joe...

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Sean’s Standouts from Coach Rick’s TOC (Day 3, Part 1)

By: Sean Halloran 2025 Chris Rivens (Team EAT 2025 National) Rivens was impressive today, showing off his natural athleticism once he was in transition. He gave everybody a glimpse of what he is capable of once he develops into his body, and grows as a basketball player. He already has the intangibles to be a great guard at the next level. With a good frame and natural athleticism, his potential...

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Noah’s Hoopers from Coach Rick’s TOC (Day 3, Part 1)

By: Noah Hooper 6’11 2023 John Baldwin (Garner Road Bulldogs 2023 – Bryant) In my time watching Baldwin this morning, he really showed me great flashes of long-term upside as he was a solid presence inside for his team. His ability to use his large frame to gain positioning on offensive and defensive rebounds was good as he was able to grab a good amount of them this morning. He also...

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Player Standouts from Coach Rick’s TOC (Day 3, Part 1)

By: Heath Gulledge 2022 6’5 Tim Vaughn (Chattanooga Elite Grey 17u) Vaughn impressed me this morning with more than one skill set today. He came out of the gate getting to the rim with ease and finishing in transition. As the game went on he began to show a more versatile skill set. He started knocking down deep balls off the catch and off the bounce whether he had a hand in his face or...

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Brandon’s Big Time Ballers from Phenom Hardwood Classic (Day 1)

6’6 2022 Nolan Hodge (NC Gators)- Hodge already committed to Unc Wilmington came in today in full attack mode, and it seemed like he had a message to send. Hodge, always a team player, was more aggressive than we’re used to seeing. Hodge completely took over the game at times and showed he can score anywhere on the floor when he feels like it. Hodge was also locked in on the defensive end. 6’6...

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POB’s Eye Catchers from Coach Rick’s TOC (Day 2, Part 3)

2024 Rakease Passmore (NLPB): With college coaches coming to watch, Passmore put on a show and gave them everything you would want in a young player. With the blend of athleticism, break down defenders, finish through contact or around/over defenders, step out and knock down shots, and be an impact defensively with blocking shots, Passmore showed it all and why he is looking to be one of the top...

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Dawkins’ Standouts from Coach Rick’s TOC (Day 2, Part 2)

By: DeAjai Dawkins 5’10 2025 Eli Ellis (Big Shots 17U/Moravian)  Has there been a player more spoken about this weekend? Likely not. Eli has made a name for himself as a consistent lead guard that plays in a constant mode of attack. He’s a stellar shooter with a rugged mentality that reminds me of Payton Pritchard of the Boston Celtics. Ellis plays with no fear in the face of older competition,...

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Dawkins’ Standouts from Coach Rick’s TOC (Day 2, Part 1)

By; DeAjai Dawkins 6’5 2024 Jamal Brown (1 of 1 Elite 2024/Word of God)  Jamal is most certainly one of the most athletically imposing prospects in this event. In 2019, I first heard of Brown after making waves as a high-flying middle schooler with incredibly advanced size. A walking 20+ point performer amongst his age group, Brown elevates above the rim with ease and has the length to truly...

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Noah’s Hoopers from Coach Rick’s TOC (Day 2, Part 2)

By: Noah Hooper 6’6 2025 Trent Steinour (Riptide 2025) When I look at Trent on the floor, the first thing I notice is how well he is able to use his length to be a disruptive asset defensively for his team. He also uses his length very well to gain positioning and grab rebounds for his team which helps them tremendously. Not only did he use his long frame well, but he also had very solid...

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Player Standouts from Coach Rick’s TOC (Day 2, Part 2)

By; Heath Gulledge 2022 6’0 Dwight Canady Jr. (NLPB Senyo)  Canady Jr. has great athleticism and the ability to use it to his advantage when being guarded by slower defenders. He’s aggressive around the rim and finishes in unique ways. He’s always running the floor and it pays off as he finds himself in a lot of two on one scenarios in which he thrives. He’s one of the primary ball handlers for...

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