Recapping the ScoutsFocus Elite 80.
The Elite 80 has been a staple in North Carolina basketball for 4 years now, especially amongst YouTube fanatics. The event has pumped out over 3 million views from guys like 8th grader Andrew Wiggins, Ryan Harrow, Quincy Miller, Ike Nwamu, and Kevin Ware. McDonald’s All Americans such as C.J. Leslie, Reggie Bullock, and P.J. Hairston have all made appearances at the Elite 80 and while this spring’s event didn’t have the marquee names, there were a number of guys who came in and left with a name for themselves.
Ex-Toronto Raptor and 10 year overseas vet Larry Bratcher put the players through a rigorous series of drills, showing them some of the tricks that helped him keep his playing career going on for so long. After the players were done getting schooled by Bratcher, they played a series of games in front of the college coaches and evaluators in attendance. Ball Is Life and City League Hoops were there to catch all of the action and helped made for what turned out to be an outstanding event.
Here’s a look at some of the guys who stood out:
Mikyle McIntosh, 6-6, SF/PF, CFCA, 2013: McIntosh straight stole the show at the Elite 80 and was hands down the best performer the event had to offer. At 6-6, he was able to take bigger guys off of the bounce while also killing smaller dudes on the blocks. McIntosh is still definitely rough around the edges, but has truly special athleticism that you simply don’t see that often in a sophomore. Mikyle has a ways to go in terms of his skill level, but the sick potential has got him offers from Miami, Wake Forest, and Louisville.
Kaza Keane, 6-1, PG, CFCA, 2013: To keep it 100, I didn’t necessarily see everything that his coach Ro Russell had told me about him the first time that I saw him nearly a year ago. Fast forward a season in the states and I see what the hype is about. The Canadian playmaker has a refined skill set with the ability kill you from beyond the arc. It’s clear that Keane has been playing the game at a high level for quite some time based on his calm court demeanor and ability to find the open man nearly every time down the hardwood, hence why Texas, Wake Forest, and Arizona have offered him a scholarship.
Sadeeq Bello, 5-7, PG, Westchester Country Day, 2014: Deuce’s baby bro put on a show at the Elite 80 for the second time around after doing his thing last fall. More of a set up guy, Bello uses his jettison speed to knife in and out of traffic and find the open man on the regular. The freshman is still a little too small to get his shot off amongst the trees, but has crazy long arms and looks like he will hit a late growth spurt like his big brother.
John Egbunu, 6-11, C, Mount Zion Christian Academy, 2013: Fresh to the states, Egbunu may have had the most dunks of anyone at the Elite 80. Dude has arms that seemingly don’t end, a great frame, and surprisingly solid hands for an African kid. The post moves aren’t there and he’s still very much a work in progress, but this tree has the roots to grow for sure.
Jalyn Pennie, 6-7, PF, CFCA, 2013: Yet another Grassroots Canada/CFCA player made our top ballers from the event. What can we say? Canada put on. “Slim” had a couple of the better dunks in the tourney and showed a much improved game from when we last checked him out. His length and athleticism make him a problem on the offensive glass and as a shot blocker. Definitely a guy to keep track of over the next couple of years at CFCA.
Jackson Kent, 6-5, SF, Page HS, 2012: Looking at Kent, you think you’re looking at your average skinny white kid. Don’t get it twisted, this kid can really go. He can shoot the lights out from beyond the arc, but if you close out on him out of control, he has no problem getting all the way to the rim and finishing. Only getting love from the Citadel and a ton of D-2’s, expect things to change shortly as more schools hear about the junior out of Greensboro.