By Dinos Trigonis, Nothing But Net Magazine Publisher & Editor-in-Chief
The annual Nike Skills Academy was held on August 16-19 at the Sports Academy in Thousand Oaks (CA). This year’s affair only had approximately 30 high school players present to go along with about 20 college counselors but the quality of talent was impressive as usual.
The event culminated with ESPNU broadcasting the HS championship game of the camp last Saturday. Listed below are 10 top prospects that caught my attention.
Keldon Johnson, 6’6”, 2018, Oak Hill Academy (Mouth of Wilson, VA): Big-time scorer can get buckets in a variety of ways whether its flying in for soaring dunks or spotting up for dagger 3’s. Made a very strong case for being the unofficial MVP of the high school group.
Emmitt Williams, 6’7”, 2018, Oakridge (Orlando, FL): Work-horse power forward has the strength, athleticism and energy necessary to fuel a future NCAA Final 4 run! Jordan Bell-type player contributes all the important things necessary to winning basketball on the HM level.
Darius Bazley, 6’10”, 2018, Princeton (Cincinnati, OH): Syracuse-bound forward is a long and multi-dimensional talent that can play several different positions. Terrific NBA upside.
Louis King, 6’7”, 2018, Hudson Catholic (Hudson, NJ): Chuck Person-type scoring forward has lethal range on his perimeter shot and the strong frame necessary to finish inside despite contact.
Jaylen Hoard, 6’9”, 2018, Wesleyan Christian (High Point, NC): Very talented forward is a major factor on both ends. France native has real NBA potential.
Cole Swider, 6’9”, 2018, St. Andrew’s (Barrington, RI): Sharp-shooting forward can really connect from beyond the 3-point arc. Committed this summer to Jay Wright and Villanova.
James Wiseman, 6’11”, 2019, Ensworth (Nashville, TN): Thin, but talented and active power forward runs floor very well and is a formidable rim-protector. Along with Charles Bassey and Vernon Carey, Wiseman is among the cream of the crop of post prospects in his class.
Ayo Dosunmu, 6’4”, 2018, Morgan Park (Chicago, IL): High-scoring combo is the leading candidate for Illinois’ “Mr. Basketball” this year.
Tyler Herro, 6’5”, 2018, Whitnall (Greenfield, WI): Future Wisconsin Badger is a hot-shooting wing that can really keep a score-keeper busy. Will help keep Wisconsin relevant in the Big 10 Conference in the very near future.
Robert Woodard II, 6’6”, 2018, Columbus (Columbus, MS): Blue-collar power forward does all the little things to help teams win. Relentless rebounder with ability to finish in traffic.
In my very limited viewing of the college counselors on-hand, those impressing me the most include Jaren Jackson (Michigan State), Chimezie Metu (USC), Miye Oni (Yale), Trevon Duval (Duke), Brandon McCoy (UNLV), Nick Ward (Michigan State) and Shake Milton (SMU).
(Photo credit: Jon Lopez/Nike)