The National Showcase has been headlined by some of the top players to come through the prep ranks in recent years, but there have also been sleepers to break onto the scene and really make a name for themselves.
Greensboro, North Carolina- The Phenom National Showcase is upon us once again and this year may be bigger than ever, hoops media giant Slam Magazine is partnering up this year for the festivities. It’s no secret who the five star prospects are coming to invade the Triad, programs from six different states have made the trip to battle it out amongst the hoop states best. With all the big names the sleepers can tend to get lost in the hype, so I put together a list consisting of five players sure to steal the show, if you haven’t heard these names before this is the perfect weekend to get familiar!
2019 6’3 Caleb Burgess (Moravian Prep)-
Burgess had a big summer and he’s had a hot start to his senior year at Moravian Prep, they gave number two ranked Oak Hill all they could handle in an OT thriller. Burgess was matched up with arguably the number one player in the nation at times and more than held his own, he’s another talented under recruited floor general. Burgess embraces the big moment he wants the ball late, Burgess is a gifted scorer at 6’3 he finishes over smaller defenders at the cup, he’s capable of making tough shots, Burgess has big time range from behind the arc as well.
Last weekend Burgess scored it at all three levels, the mid range game looked polished and he continues to lose defenders on the step back, Burgess is quick with the rock but can still stop on a dime for the pull up jumper. Burgess is surrounded by talent and still serves as the primary playmaker for this group, he sees the floor well and limits turnovers, Burgess will also commit to the defensive end. Burgess has all the makings of a really good college point guard, currently Hampton and NC A&T have offered, but that list should expand very soon.
2019 6’1 Devin Elliott (Carolina Day)
Elliott is another score first floor general with the goods to be a complete point guard at the collegiate level. Elliott is crafty with the rock, he’s got an extremely tight handle and a nice combination of dribble moves in his bag. Elliott is a streaky shooter if he sees one go in Elliott can get hot quick, Elliott has range well beyond the arc and he’s a creative finisher at the cup. Elliott can nail the running floater or pull up from mid range on a dime, Elliott is excellent in pick N roll sets also, he’s a sound decision maker and naturally unselfish.
Carolina Day has already played some tough games and Elliot has shined early on outplaying some higher ranked guards. Along with brother DeAngelo they are the leaders behind this team, they come to play every game. Devin is extremely vocal at the point guard position, and he’s a willing defender. Low Major division ones and all regional division two’s should be taking a hard look here, Elliott is going to make some head coach look really smart down the road.
2019 6’6 Cortez Marion- Holmes (Northside Christian)
Marion -Holmes is a versatile forward with the ball skills to play on the perimeter, and the tenacity to bang down low. The combination of length and athleticism offers up big upside and versatility on both ends. Marion- Holmes was considered a tweener but, he has expanded his range beyond the three, he continues to remain efficient from the elbow, and Marion-Holmes has improved as a slasher off the dribble.
An underrated rebounder Marion- Holmes is a guy that understands establishing position on the block, his length and natural explosion put Marion-Holmes in position for any rebound in the vicinity. Defensively Marion-Holmes is gritty, he’s tough and doesn’t shy away from physical play. Marion- Holmes can matchup on multiple positions, he’s agile enough to matchup on perimeter threats, and physical enough to defend bigger forwards at 6’6. Currently Marion Holmes holds an offer from UNC- Pembroke, but division ones are starting to take notice, this could be one of NC’s best kept secrets.
2019 6’5 Reign Larson (Hickory Grove)
Larson is an absolute sniper from deep at 6’5 he’s got a quick trigger, and Larson isn’t afraid to let it fly. Larson is a guy who shows a little more every time you see him live, off ball Larson is money on the catch and shoot, he moves well off screens really tight ready to shoot, Larson utilizes the entire floor for spacing. Larson is a confident mid range scorer, he shoots over smaller guards almost effortlessly.
Larson size and shooting ability will be huge positives at the next level, Larson has shown some versatility and toughness early in this senior campaign, he’s played down low some at times for a thin Hickory Grove front court. Larson has also served as the primary ball handler at times, his toughness and leadership will continued to be counted on for this group.
2019 6’0 Landon Sutton (HPCA)
Sutton has been known as a score first combo guard but he’s proven to be a capable playmaker as well recently. Sutton’s passing ability is something that doesn’t get talked about enough within his game, Sutton remains a marksman from behind the arc and he has gotten better as a finisher with time, Sutton has added muscle to a once slender frame which allows him to absorb contact better at the cup. Sutton is a volume scorer who can get buckets within the flow of this HPCA offense, Sutton is good in transition and half court sets, he’s got big time range accompanied by a quick trigger.
Sutton is the leader for the Cougars he has been around the program two years now and knows expectations, he’s the battle tested veteran in this backcourt. Sutton has progressed each year as a defender, he takes pride in making things tough for the opponent, Sutton has quick hands and he can anticipate plays at times before they happen. Sutton is another fringe division one prospect going extremely under recruited in North Carolina, Sutton can provided a scoring punch from day one at the low major divison one level, at division two Sutton is a potential all american.