This past weekend, Charles Clark of Basketball Elite put on the NC Eastern Regional FAB 40 camp at Fayetteville Academy in Fayetteville, NC. This was a great opportunity for kids at every level to get an opportunity to compete in front of college coaches, media outlets and against one another. Numerous college coaches were in attendance to observe these unsigned prospects as well as several media outlets such as Netcast Sports, BallIsLife, Next Level Assessments, Born2Win Academy and more. Players from every classification (1A, 2A, 3A, 4A) were in attendance on an invite only basis and competed on both ends until the final buzzer of each game. Several seniors came into this camp with something to prove and left a lasting impression on me and several college coaches in attendance. I have listed a few of them below and what I learned about them over the course of the camp.
Plymouth HS, Marlik Brooks – 6’7” (Team Showtime)
Marlik Brooks came into the FAB 40 Camp as a relatively unknown, due to playing at small 1A Plymouth HS. However, he left a lasting impression. Brooks showed a really nice touch on his jump-shot, knocking down a plethora of 3 pointers and mid-range jumpers. Also showed a solid first step and leaping ability. Shows very good timing on blocking shots and uses his length well to grab rebounds in and out of position. Has very long arms and good instincts. Very raw overall, but possesses a ton of potential. Two seasons at a solid juco or a post-grad year will give a better understanding long term what he’ll be able to do at a higher level. I expect to hear his name more in the future.
Ocracoke HS, Evin Caswell – 6’4” (Phi Slamma Jama)
Looks can be very deceiving. Evin arrived into the FAB 40 camp as easily the least known prospect in the gym, hailing from Ocracoke Island. My first time watching him I was left in shock as he exploded for 32 points, 18 rebounds and 5 assists versus a tough Plymouth HS team. He was later named Coastal 10 1A player of the year, averaging 18 points, 10 rebounds and 3 assists for his Ocracoke HS team. Fast forward to FAB 40, Evin proved his game is no fluke, showing off a solid floater, playing tough defense, rebounding and throwing down monster dunks in every game. He also was consistent in grabbing boards and getting out in transition, finishing strong at the rim against bigger athletes. Already a strong student in the classroom, D2, D3 and NAIA schools will be all over him after his showing this past weekend.
Voyager Academy, China Jones – 6’6” (Phi Slamma Jama)
China Jones was one of the biggest surprises at this event. China didn’t register a single made 3 pointer this season as his Voyager HS went on to win the 1A State Championship. This past weekend he showed incredible accuracy from 3-point range in every game to go along with his high level athleticism and motor. Standing at 6’6”, he’s an explosive athlete and showing the ability to knock down shots from the perimeter the way he did is a great sign for schools that may have been concerned with his position. He is very capable of playing and knocking down shots on the wing and he is very active defensively, registering a ton of deflections and weak-side blocks.
Kinston HS, Dominic Williams – 5’9” (Phi Slamma Jama)
Dominic Williams came into the camp with a lot to prove. Due to his size a lot of people questioned his ability to produce and run a team while dealing with bigger and stronger guards, but all year he proved more than capable. He didn’t back down from anyone at FAB 40 and more than held his own on both ends of the floor. Showed a high IQ and a great ability to execute in pick and roll and sound decision making on fastbreaks. Was also able to show an improved jump-shot, knocking down 3’s and pull-up jumpers all over. Defensively, he met opposing ball-handlers early in possessions and pestered players into bad long passes. Should have several JC options to choose from over the next couple of weeks.
Weldon HS, Koraan Clemonts – 6’1” (Dream Team)
Clemonts is a very interesting point guard prospect. He led the state of North Carolina in assists per game for the 2nd season in a row, averaging 10 assists per game for Weldon HS to go along with 17 points per game. Also interesting to note, he is one of the few point guards from NC to be able to say he registered a quadruple-double in a game (points, rebounds, assists, steals). At FAB 40, Clemonts showed an adept ability to penetrate defenses off the dribble and seemingly always knows where his teammates will be, dropping off beautiful passes for easy scores consistently. Also showed a strong ability to finish with his off hand at the rim and exhibited a very good array of hesitation moves that kept defenders guessing all day. A year young for his graduating class, I’m interested to see how his recruitment goes. Has a very unique game and could be a diamond in the rough at the next level.
Weldon HS, Mel’Quan Ames – 6’5” (Dream Team)
Mel’Quan showed off impressive abilities for a prospect his size. Standing at 6’5”, he handled the ball well, created shots off the dribble and finished plays above the rim. His wingspan may have been the longest at the event. Has solid lateral movement that should enable him to become a menace defensively at the next level combined with his length. Stayed active on both ends throughout the camp. Has the potential to develop into a versatile all-around wing at the next level with his combination of high level athleticism, length and skill. Reportedly has already picked up interest from several colleges all over.
Jacksonville HS, Bobby Grubbs – 6’4” (Phi Slamma Jama)
This kid lit it up. Was knocking down shots at an impressive clip from all over the floor off the dribble and off the catch the entire camp. Showed a ton of toughness. Didn’t back down from anyone and showed a surprising ability to rebound the ball from the SG spot. Showed a great motor. Never stopped moving on either end on every possession. He has really good size at the shooting guard position and possesses a solid frame well equipped to put on some more muscle. A great student with over a 4.0 GPA, LM and D2’s should be making their pitches right now for his services over these next 4 years.
Wayne Christian, Tyrique McClain, 6’3” (Showtime)
McClain came into FAB 40 with an impressive resume. Once had a stretch during his high school career where he scored 60, 59 and 57 in consecutive games for his Wayne Christian School. At FAB 40, once he got into attack mode, defenders struggled to keep him out of the paint. He gets into the paint at will using his quickness and array of hesitation dribbles, resulting in tough finishes and pull-up jumpers. Very explosive with plenty of potential to improve on his point guard skills. A very hard worker, any LM D1 or D2 school that gets a commitment from him will get a player that will give them their all.
Northside Jacksonville, Robert Colon, 6’1” (Lob City)
Colon was arguably one of the best players at FAB 40. He set the camp record for assists in a game with 13 helpers while showing off a very tight handle and a consistent 3 point-shot. He is very hard to contain off the dribble due to his quick yet accurate pull-up jumper, tight handle and his great passing ability. With some added strength and some adjustments to the physicality, I would not be surprised to see him have a big impact in the next few seasons at the Division 1 level. I can’t say it enough, but he possesses a strong knockdown shooting ability, a tight handle and has a confidence about him that should help his transition to the next level be smoother than most.
Nash Central, Joshua Mullins, 6’2” (Phi Slamma Jama)
There is so much to like about Joshua Mullins. Showed versatility at FAB 40, playing some point guard and sliding over comfortably at the SG spot as well. Really got after it defensively and moved his feet well against quick guards and forced opponents into tough contested shots. Rarely was beat off the dribble. Offensively, he showed why he was a 23 point per game scorer for his Nash Central HS team, showing off a smooth isolation dribble game, deadeye marksmanship from 3 point range and the ability to drive and finish above the rim. Has some college interest, but could work his way into a few offers on the AAU circuit.
Bear Grass Charter, Jahziah Dyer, 6’1” (Lob City)
Dyer is a very compact, left-handed lead guard that has a strong handle. At FAB 40 he was able to consistently get in the paint and finish at the rim as well as driving and kicking out to shooters. Defensively, he gets low and communicated well against screen action plays and showed an overall solid ability to lead on both ends of the floor. Despite pressure and facing several guards with length and high level athleticism, he was never sped up and got to his spots. Very capable point guard that could run an offense at a D2/D3 or NAIA school.