North Carolina Phenom 150 Session 3:Evaluation Team 4
Coach Dre Simmons
#4: 5’5 ’22 Matthew Liles (Lexington, NC)
Starting things off, we look at a player that was able to make his presence felt quite well for his age and size, Matthew Liles. He’s a young guard prospect that showed the ability to operate with or without the ball and find success. Liles shot the ball very well from the perimeter and posed problems for opponents when spotting-up. He’s a smart defender that contained his assignment quite well in all areas on that end of the floor. Next in his development process is working to add strength to his wiry frame, as it would allow him to make a stronger impact as a rebounder. Coach Simmons on Liles: “Matthew is a good catch-and-shoot option! He can get hot quick and is a good team player with a quality sense of floor awareness. He’s a tough kid and plays really hard, especially to be undersized. He’s a good ball-handler, but can work on getting stronger.” Liles is quite young, but was able to contribute pretty consistently throughout his time at camp, and could be a prospect worth keeping an eye on going forward.
#6: 5’7 ’23 London Johnson (Charlotte, NC)
Next, we look at a player that possesses an incredible crossroads between productivity and long-term potential, London Johnson. He’s a wiry guard prospect that showed flashes of dominance during his time at camp, able to completely take over on offense and score or make plays whenever he desired. Johnson plays with a calm, smooth demeanor and displays great intelligence on both sides of the ball. He’s already so crafty with the ball in his hands and will be unbelievably problematic upon adding strength. Next in his development process is working to become a more efficient shooter off the dribble, as it would allow him to score against any opponent. Coach Simmons on Johnson: “London is a good shooter that can get to the rack pretty easily. He’s comfortable handling the ball with either hand. London is always engaged and is a good team player. He’s very coachable and should continue working to add strength.” Johnson is special and should be able to emerge as one of the top prospects in North Carolina from the Class of 2023.
#16: 5’9 ’19 Christian Pepen (Charlotte, NC)
Moving onto a player that was able to contribute quite nicely on both sides of the ball, Christian Pepen. He’s a guard prospect that can handle the ball or operate as an off-ball cutter and spot-up shooter. Pepen offers a strong blend of scoring and playmaking, able to provide his team with whatever is needed. He played with great energy on defense and was able to force multiple turnovers on the day. Next in his development process is working to add strength, as it would allow him to become a more impactful two-way rebounder. Coach Simmons on Pepen: “Christian is a very intriguing player. He seems to be effective at getting to the rack and creating opportunities for teammates. He plays with a high motor and is the type of kid that any coach would love to have on his team. Christian can work to have more confidence in his jumper.” Pepen was a reliable guard option for his camp team and looked increasingly poised to enjoy a productive upcoming senior season.
#25: 5’10 ’21 Jim Fagan (Winston-Salem, NC)
Continuing onto a player that really excelled when operating without the ball, Jim Fagan. He’s a guard prospect that knows how to move and apply constant pressure as an off-ball cutter. Fagan showed the ability to knock down shots from midrange and three-point territory throughout the day, especially of the catch. He handled and passed the ball well whenever possible while exerting great energy on defense. Next in his development process is working on his ability to penetrate and finish consistently around the basket, as it would make him a much more complete scoring threat. Coach Simmons on Fagan: “Jim is a good catch-and-shoot option. He’s a great teammate that is always engaged. He showed flashes of good passing ability. Jim is a hardnosed defender that isn’t afraid to get up into his assignment. He can continue to work on his overall speed.” Fagan understood his role quite well during camp and should be able to steadily progress over the coming years.
#36: 6’0 ’19 Shykel Brown (Durham, NC)
Next, we look at a player that showed flashes of dominance during his time at camp, Shykel Brown. He’s a strong-bodied point guard prospect with incredible vision and three-level scoring efficiency. Brown is very quick with the ball in his hands and can deceptively get by opponents or hit the brakes and pull-up from anywhere. He’s extremely smart and displays a natural feel for his teammates. Brown forces turnovers with relative ease and did a great job of shutting down his assignment. Next in his development process is continuing to take the necessary steps to prepare himself for the college game, as he should definitely be considered a scholarship-worthy prospect. Coach Simmons on Brown: “Shykel is simply unbelievable. He was definitely my best player throughout the day. He does whatever he wants and gets it done at a strong level. Penetrating, handling the ball, shooting from three levels, and locking up his assignment were all exceptionally proficient areas for Shykel. I didn’t see any glaring weaknesses in his game.” Brown was arguably the most exciting point guard prospect on display and nearly secured the Mr. Playmaker trophy at camp.
#48: 6’0 ’20 Shaquor Marsh (Greensboro, NC)
Moving onto a player that does an exceptional job of making his presence felt without forcing the action, Shaquor Marsh. He’s a guard prospect that provides excellent energy to both sides of the ball. Marsh plays with a calm demeanor, but showed aggression when attacking the basket and looking to make plays. He’s a poised defender that contains his assignment well in all defensive areas. Next in his development process is working to become a more capable scorer off the dribble, as it would allow him to become a more complete offensive threat. Coach Simmons on Marsh: “Shaquor has good hands on defense. He’s a good slasher that gets to the hoop with ease. He has a decent jumper and rebounds nicely for his position. Shaquor can continue to work on his speed and agility going forward.” Marsh plays hard and is an excellent teammate; he understands his role extremely well and should be able to contribute nicely throughout the upcoming season.
#59: 6’1 ’23 Jordan Jones (Spring Lake, NC)
Continuing onto a player that was able to highlight his excellent crossroads between productivity and long-term potential, Jordan Jones. He’s a young wing prospect with nice size and the ability to really shoot from the perimeter. Jones is an efficient three-level scorer that plays with energy and an unselfish approach to the game. He displayed great quickness on defense and was able to contain his assignment quite well. Jones has no glaring weaknesses and can actively toggle between guard positions. Next in his development process is working to continue getting repetitions, as it’ll improve his feel for the game on both sides of the ball. Coach Simmons on Jones: “Jordan is a good shooter that can get hot in a hurry. He’s a great teammate that is always vocal. Jordan is a solid defender and rebounder, but can continue to work on his overall confidence.” Jones displayed an obvious amount of upside during his time at camp and should be a prospect worth keeping an eye on going forward.
#66: 6’2 ’21 Adonijah Whitley (Greensboro, NC)
Next, we look at player that made quite a strong impression with his ability to make plays on defense, Adonijah Whitley. He’s a wiry wing/forward prospect that understands how to create havoc for his assignment. Whitley is a capable shooter, but is more effective when getting downhill and attacking the rim with aggression. He was able to bother his assignment on defense with his footwork and quickness, able to accumulate multiple steals on the day. Next in his development process is working on his ability to spot-up and knock down shots off the catch, as he’s actually better when shooting off the bounce. Coach Simmons on Whiltey: “Adonijah has good footwork and nice bounce to his game. He can get to the rack fairly easily and displayed decent consistency on his jumper. He’s a solid all-around player that can continue to work on his perimeter jumper.” Whitley operated nicely within his role and should be able to steadily progress over the coming years.
#79: 6’4 ’20 Carter Kirkland (Greer, SC)
Moving onto a player that was able to consistently highlight his blue-collar work ethic on the basketball court, Carter Kirkland. He’s a forward prospect that looks to make hustle plays however possible. Kirkland fights hard for every available loose ball and actively rebounds on both sides of the floor. He moves well without the ball and showed quality post-up moves for his size. Kirkland typically operates around the paint and was able to finish quite consistently through traffic. Next in his development process is working to improve his ball-handling ability, as it’ll make him a more reliable offensive threat. Coach Simmons on Kirkland: “Carter is a very coachable player that is solid down low. He’s a physical presence that can finish and rebound, but can continue to work on his hands.” Kirkland worked exceptionally hard during camp and should be able to continue refining his game over the next few seasons.
#82: 6’4 ’20 Jacari Outlaw (Goldsboro, NC)
Continuing onto a player that has done a nice job of continually improving on both sides of the ball, Jacari Outlaw. He’s a long wing prospect with nice size and excellent three-level scoring ability. Outlaw is somewhat of a quiet presence, but does exceptionally well at operating within his role and applying constant scoring pressure. He is a useful defender, but has even more potential given his length and ability to switch across multiple positions. Next in his development process is continuing to add strength to his wiry frame, as it’ll allow him to absorb more contact on penetration attempts. Coach Simmons on Outlaw: “Jacari is getting better and better. He’s a slasher that rebounds well on both ends of the floor. He’s a great teammate and high-motor guy that never quits on a possession. He’s very coachable. Jacari can continue working on his consistency off the bounce from beyond the arc.” Outlaw is a very intriguing and should be poised for a very productive upcoming season at Greenfield.
#91: 6’5 ’20 Anderson Kirkland (Greer, SC)
Finishing up, we look at a player that has a pretty unique two-way approach to the game, Anderson Kirkland. He’s a strong-bodied forward prospect that typically plays around the basket and looks to operate from the low block. Kirkland displayed nice touch and feel for making plays near the paint. He pursued every possible rebound available and frequently outworked his assignment. Kirkland is a great teammate that is willing to sacrifice his touches for the betterment of the team. Next in his development process is working to become quicker, as it would allow him to take slower opponents off the dribble with more regularity. Coach Simmons on Kirkland: “Anderson is very coachable and continually got better throughout the day. He is solid around the basket and should start working to impose his will down low. Anderson should continue developing his game near the rim.” Kirkland understands his skillset quite well and should be an intriguing prospect to watch develop over the next few seasons.