Garrett one of many taking off during live period
DUNCANVILLE, Texas -- The majority of Saturday was spent bouncing around the 17U Gold division of the Adidas Gauntlet. However, side trips to the Lone Star Challenge and the 16U division of the Gauntlet proved to be worthwhile. At the least, four-star point guard Marcus Garrett was very much worth seeing.
FOUR-STAR GARRETT COMING ON STRONG
As 6-foot-5 junior point guard Marcus Garrett took the floor with his Swaghouse Elite team at the LoneStar Challenge, the stands started to slowly fill up. By the time he'd finished a 27-point effort in a win that included a buzzer beating three to force overtime, Garrett had drawn coaches from Kansas, Iowa State, Texas, SMU, Oklahoma State, Kansas State and Oregon.
While an impressive list, the crowd to watch him only figures to grow as time goes by.
Currently ranked No. 61 in the 2017 Rivals150, Garrett looked like a guy primed for another rise in the rankings. He's got great size, knows when to use his athleticism, finds teammates for buckets, locks up defensively and he's got the clutch gene.
"It feels real good to be getting recognition," he said. "I've been working on my shooting since school season ended. I feel I can get to the rim and find my teammates for passes."
Garrett took unofficial visits to TCU and SMU during the season and says that he's looking to start setting visits in July. He is open, but also said that Kansas, Texas, SMU and Oregon stand out as programs that he would like to see.
GRIMES ANNOUNCES HIS PRESENCE
The great thing about the open evaluation period is that players come from off the radar can quickly make a name for themselves. Six-foot-4 sophomore combo guard Quentin Grimes from The Woodlands (Texas) College Park wasn't exactly an unknown, but after his play with Basketball University, he's seen his stock soar.
Capable of running the point or playing off the ball as a primary scorer, Grimes is an instinctual basketball player. He has terrific body control and is equally comfortable driving for scores, hitting jumpers and setting the table for teammates.
Tulsa, Texas A&M and Tennessee all watched on Saturday and have come through with recent offers.
BASSEY A POTENTIAL BEAST AND MORE SATURDAY NOTES
A day removed from the Jordan Brand Classic International game in Brooklyn, freshman power forward Charles Bassey was impressive in the 16U Adidas Gauntlet. Pushing 6-foot-10, Bassey has outstanding athleticism and instincts. You don't need to see a kid that big take the ball coast to coast while legitimately shaking defenders with his dribble many times to know he's got a huge upside.
A couple of other freshmen that caught our eye were 6-foot-8 forward Matthew Hurt of D1 Minnesota and 6-foot-2 guard Grant Sherfield of Marcus Smart YGC36 who both played up two age groups in the 17U division. Hurt had a double double against an athletic Game Elite squad and did so by playing tough around the rim and showing touch on jumpers. Minnesota -- where older brother Michael Hurt is headed -- has already offered. A Texan, Sherfield picked up his first offer from San Diego on Saturday and many more are sure to come. He shoots well, makes terrific decisions and looks like a seasoned veteran who will fire up loads of Big 12 attention.
Houston and Creighton were among those to watch 6-foot-7 junior power forward Fabian White. A bouncy insider from Houston, White got going in the second half of a game with the Houston Hoopstars. He's quick to the rim, has good rebounding instincts and plays hard. He mentioned offers from the Cougars and Jays to go along with Florida Gulf Coast, Incarnate Word and Boise State.
Making a major play for the Rivals150 in 2017 is 6-foot-2 point guard Zack Dawson of D3 M.O.A.M Elite. A slick floor general who showed impressive command of the high ball screen, he played with great pace mixing up speeds, scoring and passing. Louisville has offered and so have Florida Gulf Coast, Kansas State, Lousiana Tech and Florida International among others.
Another point guard on the cusp of the Rivals150 in 2017 is Michael Okauru from North Carolina. Okauru's clutch step back three from the right corner forced overtime against Dawson's squad and then Okauru and Garner Roads sealed the deal. Okauru said that the new staff at Rutgers has offered and that he just picked up an offer from Clemson. He also mentioned Xavier, Virginia, N.C. State and Kansas as programs that have monitored his progress. Okauru went for 21 points and four assists while fellow guard Thomas Allen went nuts from the floor scoring 38 on 16-23 shooting.
A nice scorer from Chicago is 6-foot-2 combo guard Elijah Joiner. A strong and tough three-star junior, Joiner is more comfortable as a scorer where he hits jumpers and uses his body to finish through contact. However, he is capable of running a team and could be flying a little under the radar. He listed offers from Illinois State -- head coach Dan Muller stalked him -- to go with DePaul, Wisconsin Green Bay, Winthrop, UIC and Bradley. A teammate of Joiner's on Team Rose, junior combo guard Dwayne Rose is coming into his own. He's a good athlete and another natural scorer. He picked up an offer from Western Illinois on Saturday to go along with one he already had from UIC.
Clemson looks to have landed a good one in four-star shooting guard A.J. Oliver. He needs to get a bit stronger, but he's got sneaky burst off the dribble and is a dangerous and skilled scorer with his three-point shooting and pull-up jump shooting game. Future head coach Brad Brownell was checking him out.
The UCLA bound duo of five-star point guard Jaylen Hands and four-star power forward Jalen Hill put their stamp on a Compton Magic win over Basketball University. Hands didn't shoot the ball great, but he sure stepped up and delivered slick dishes while taking car of the ball as he handed out eight assists to just one turnover. Looking bigger and more athletic each time out, Hill played around the rim, crashed the glass and made things look easy in a 20-point outing.