2018 ToC Recap…
The ToC crowned two champions this past year- The Belleville West Maroons won the National Classic with a hard-fought 84-73 victory over top-ranked Louisiana small school power- Rayville. E.J. Liddell was named the event’s MVP and Most Outstanding Player with averages of 29 points, 11 boards and 5 blocks per game. Rayville’s Mylik Wilson was incredible throughout the event as he was named to the All-Tournament team. Wilson averaged 21 points, 9 boards, 6 assists and 4 steals in the event.
Chicago Leo’s Fred Cleveland and DaChaun Anderson were hard to stop in the 2018 ToC. Cleveland averaged 27 points a game, and finished as the 2nd all-time ToC career scoring leader with 226 points. Anderson broke the ToC tournament record for rebounds with 65 in 4 games. Liddell became the 3rd all-time ToC career scoring leader with 224 points in 8 ToC games.
The Washington Invitational was won by the Pleasant Grove Vikings from Utah. Casey Brown, Tyler Fairbanks, Kael Mikkelsen and 7’4″ Sr. Matthew Van Komen teamed up to destroy the competition in the WI. Brown (18 ppg- 5 rpg- 4 apg) was named the event’s MVP and MOP for his efforts! Van Komen was dominant down low and Fairbanks was deadly from beyond the 3-point stripe. Kawika Akina broke his wrist in the 2nd game of the tournament, and was unable to perform through the rest of the event. Akina passed out 9 assists in his team’s first win over Aurora Christian.
St. Louis Mehlville’s Davion Bradford and Pacifica Christian’s dynamic duo of Judah Brown and Solomon Davis played very well throughout the tournament. Jaehshon Thomas of Aurora Christian averaged 18.5 points a game in the event, and was a pleasant surprise to ToC fans. Chicago Uplift’s Markese Jacobs scored 41 points and was named the MVP of the ToC Shootout Series.
Several former ToC stars are absolutely dominating in college play this season! Leading the pack is Duke’s sensational freshman Zion Williamson who is averaging 22 points and 9 boards a game for the Blue Devils. Williamson is projected as the first pick in the 2019 NBA Draft! Williamson was an explosive star in the 2016 ToC!
Seniors Ethan Happ of Wisconsin and Jordan Caroline of Nevada are destroying their competition this year. Happ is averaging 19 points, 10 boards and 5 assists for the Badgers. Caroline is averaging 19 points and 10 boards for the nationally ranked Wolfpack of Nevada. Other top college players include:
6’8″ So. KZ Okpala, Stanford- 18 ppg, 7rpg; 6’5″ So. Nickeil Alexander-Walker, Virginia Tech- 18 ppg- 5 rpg, 5 apg; 6’7″ Fr. Ignas Brazdeikis, Michigan- 15 ppg; 6’6″ Jr. Charles Matthews, Michigan 14 ppg; 6’7″ Sr. Vic Law, Northwestern- 16 ppg- 7 rpg- 4 apg; 6’4″ Fr. Luguentz Dort, Arizona State- 16 ppg; 6’0″ So. Jhivvan Jackson, UT-San Antonio- 21 ppg; 6’5″ Fr. Tyler Herro, Kentucky- 14 ppg; 6’11” So. Nic Claxton, Georgia- 13 ppg- 10 rpg; 6’11” Jr. Austin Wiley, Auburn- 12 ppg, 8 rpg; 6’5″ Sr. Vasa Pusica, Northeastern- 16 ppg, 5 apg and 6’10” Sr. James Thompson, Eastern Michigan- 12 ppg and 11 rpg.
Udoka Azubuike of Kansas injured his wrist and is out for the season. Azubuike was averaging 14 points and 7 boards before his injury.
Anthony Davis of the New Orleans Pelicans is on his way to becoming a 5-time NBA All-Star. Davis is currently averaging 29 points, 13 boards and 3 blocks per game. He is among the NBA leaders in all three categories.
Myles Turner of the Indiana Pacers leads the League in blocked shots with 2.8 per outing. DeAndre Jordan of the Dallas Mavericks is among the NBA leaders in rebounds, blocked shots and field goal percentage.
Buddy Hield of the Sacramento Kings is averaging 20 points a game!
The 13th Annual Tournament of Champions begins Tuesday, November 20th and will run through Saturday evening, November 24th, 2018.
The event will once again feature some of the elite teams and players from Illinois and across the nation. This year’s ToC is broken down between three separate events: The Washington Invitational, The National Classic and the ToC Shootout Series.
The Washington Invitational will feature five teams from Illinois and three teams from Missouri, California and Utah. Pacifica Christian, CA will feature three DI prospects who can flat out play- 6’7″ Jr. Judah Brown, 6’7″ Sr. Solomon Davis and 6’4″ So. Houston Mallette. Brown is quickly becoming a household name among basketball recruiters and college coaches. He is an elite athlete who is just starting to come into his own as a player. Pleasant Grove, UT is the first team from Utah to play in the ToC. The Vikings are led by 7’4″ Sr. Matt Van Komen, 6’3″ Sr. Casey Brown and 5’9″ Sr. Kawika Akina. Van Komen has committed to Utah, and Brown has made a commitment to the BYU Cougars.
The Mehlville Panthers from St. Louis will feature two DI prospects in 6’7″ Jr. Lamontay Daugherty and 6’5″ Jr. Dylan Branson. Daugherty was considered a top five talent in the Illinois’ 2020 recruiting class, before moving to St. Louis and joining the Panthers of Mehlville. The Aurora Christian Eagles will feature the dynamic duo of 6’6″ Jr. Will Wolfe and 6’1″ Jr. Taaj Davis. Pekin will be one of the better shooting teams in this year’s event, with 6’0″ So. Adam Cash, 6’0″ Jr. Max Jones and 6’5″ Jr. Justin Taphorn draining perimeter jumpers.
The Washington Panthers will be a very young, but talented squad this year. Sophomores Devon Vanderheydt and Rickey Woods will team with Freshman Sensation Gus Lucas on the WCHS floor this winter. Six-Four junior Dane Nieukirk could be a sleeper player in this year’s tourney. The Harlem backcourt duo of Treye Tucker and David Williams will spell trouble for teams in this year’s event, as will- the backcourt duo of Winchester West Central- 6’0″ Jr. Gabe Cox and 6’1″ Jr. Drew Evans.
The National Classic will feature Illinois’ defending 4A State Champions, the Belleville West Maroons. All-America forward E.J. Liddell returns to the ToC with his teammates as they look to capture the National Classic crown in November. Lawrence Brazil and Keith Randolph also return to the West lineup. Last year, the Maroons lost in the ToC finals to Sam Houston, TX- 84-74.
Joining Belleville West in their division will be Sumter Lakewood-SC, Mobile Le Flore-AL and Urbana. Lakewood has a high-octane offense led by 6’5″ Jr. Quentin Hodge and 6’7″ Sr. Juwan Perdue. Le Flore has always been a basketball power in the great state of Alabama. The Rattlers are led by 6’8″ Sr. DeAntoni Gordon (Wichita State), 6’6″ Jr. Tyler Lang and 6’7″ So. Jaylin Murray. The Tigers of Urbana have a very balanced lineup of shooters and athletes. Six-three senior Payton Sheen is a lights-out shooter from the perimeter, and 6’7″ So. Jaylen Bryson is an athletic wing for the Tigers.
The Rayville Hornets return four starters from last season’s Louisiana State Championship team, who went 35-0! The Hornets are led by 6’3″ Sr. Mylik Wilson (20 ppg- 11 apg) and his twin cousins- 6’6″ Sr. Ja’Markus Wilson and 6’6″ Sr. Ja’Michael Wilson. The sleeper star of this group is the highly athletic 6’4″ Jr. Jay Pleasant who possesses a 40+” vertical.
Joining Rayville in their division will be St. Louis CBC- MO, Cy-Fair LCHS- TX and Chicago Leo. CBC is a very talented group of players led by 6’3″ Jr. All-America Caleb Love and a pair of exciting Freshmen guards- Larry Hughes, jr. and Robert Martin. Cy-Fair is young, tall and extremely talented. Cy-Fair’s interior is led by 6’11” So. All-America Chuks Isitua and 6’10” Jr. Allen Udemadu. The Falcons will look to athletic 6’5″ Sr. Larenz Williams for scoring assistance from the wing. The Leo Lions have a tremendous group of players, led by 5’8″ Sr. Fred Cleveland and 6’8″ Sr. DaChaun Anderson. Cleveland is one of the ToC’s All-Time leaders in scoring and assists.
The ToC Shootout Series will feature Chicago Uplift and St. Louis Christian as they lock horns on Wednesday, November 21st at 6:30 pm. Uplift is led by their 6’0″ Sr. All-America- Markese Jacobs. SLCA is led by 6’6″ So. Jordan Nesbitt and 6’9″ So. Jonathan Izemef. The Cougars will also display AAU legend Ramone Woods (5’9″ Sr.) who exploded for 68 points in a Summer League game this past year.
The ToC will kick-off at 4:15 pm on Tuesday, November 20th with Limestone and St. Louis Lindbergh-MO taking the floor. The Lindbergh Flyers are led by 6’11” Sr. Erik Lahm. Limestone will look to 6’4″ Sr. Mike Dunne for their offensive spark.
There are plenty of former ToC stars suiting up at the college ranks this season. Here is a quick list of the stars to watch this upcoming season:
Zion Williamson, Duke; Austin Wiley, Auburn; Ethan Happ, Wisconsin; Jordan Caroline, Nevada; Udoka Azubuike and Quentin Grimes, Kansas; Charles Matthews and Ignas Brazdeikis, Michigan; James Thompson, Eastern Michigan; Chris Clarke and Nickeil Alexander-Walker, Virginia Tech; Xavier Sneed, Kansas State; Vasa Pusica, Northeastern; Tyler Herro, Kentucky; Kezie Okpala, Stanford; Travis Munnings, Louisiana-Monroe; Vic Law, Northwestern; George Conditt, Iowa State; Kendric Davis, TCU; Connor Vanover, California; Luguentz Dort, Arizona State plus Devin Whitelow, Winona State and Lou Griffith, St. Thomas Aquinas College.
ToC End of the season report, 2018
The 2018 Basketball Season is coming to an end, and what a great year of hoops it was.
SIX ToC teams from the 2017 field won state, province and national affiliate championships!
- Belleville West won the Illinois 4A State Championship over Chicago Whitney Young, while ending the season as the 14th ranked team in the nation! The Maroons 6’7″ Jr. E.J. Liddell was named Illinois’ Mr. Basketball and Gatorade Player of the Year. Malachi Smith, Keith Randolph, Lawrence Brazil and Justin Edwards played exceptionally well all season for Coach Joe Muniz.
- Chicago Orr won the Illinois 2A State Championship with a win over Winnebago. Coach Lou Adams’ Spartans finished the season ranked as the 19th best team in the country. Raekwon Drake, Dannie Smith, Ty Mosley, Chase Adams, Brian Hernandez and Emmanuel O’Neal played like a well-oiled machine for the Spartans.
- Montgomery Carver won the 6A Alabama State Championship behind the tremendous play of 6’6″ Jr. Jaykwon Walton (22 ppg), 6’1″ Sr. Jalen Gaston (19 ppg) and 6’1″ Sr. Darrell Bailey (12 ppg). Coach James Jackson’s Wolverines have won three state titles after participating in the ToC that same season!!
- Winston-Salem Prep won the 1A North Carolina State Championship with great team work. Daivien Williamson (23 ppg- 5 apg) was named MVP of the State Finals and was named to the NC All-State Team in March. Chaz Gwyn, Corey Rutherford, Justice Goodloe, K.J. Watson and Zack Austin played huge roles for the Phoenix (27-3) and Coach Andre Gould.
- The Rise Centre Academy won the OSBA (Ontario Scholastic Basketball Association) Title with a 74-72 victory over Ridley College Prep. The Wolfpack are loaded with DI talent, and were led throughout the season by 6’7″ Sr. Deon Ejim, 6’10” Sr. Adong Makuoi and 6’0″ Sr. Antoine Vernon. Juniors Avan Nava and Adam Francolini were named to the ToC All-Tournament team.
- Tennessee Preparatory Academy won the NACA championship with a hard-earned victory over Our Savior New American, NY. Antavion Collum proved that he is one of the elite players in the 2019 recruiting class. Collum averaged 27 points, 11 rebounds and 7 assists per game for the Diplomat Lions.
BIG TIME ToC TALENT:
- Zion Williamson was named to the McDonald’s All-America Team after averaging 37 points and 17 rebounds a game for Spartanburg Day School. He was the Slam Dunk Champion in the McDonald’s All-America Game Dunk Contest. Williamson will be a freshman at Duke next season.
- Quentin Grimes was named to the McDonald’s All-America Team after averaging 31 points, 9 rebounds and 5 assists. Grimes will be playing for Kansas next season.
- Tyler Herro was named to the Jordan Brand Classic All-America Team along with Williamson and Grimes. Herro averaged 32 points and 5 assists for Whitnall this past season. Herro will be playing for the Kentucky Wildcats next season.
- Ignas Brazdeikis was the top player in Canada this year after averaging 39 points and 11 rebounds per game. Brazdeikis will be playing for Michigan next season.
- E.J. Liddell will be rising up the ranking lists after a stellar season for his HS Maroons. Liddell will be a triple-double machine for BW next season. We look forward to seeing him and his West teammates at the ToC next Thanksgiving.
The ToC All-Collegiate team for 2018 is led by our Player of the Year- 6’2″ Sr. Jevon Carter of West Virginia. Here is the complete list.
- Jevon Carter, West Virginia, 6’2″ Sr. 17 ppg- 7 apg- 5 rpg- 3 spg
- Trevon Bluiett, Xavier, 6’6″ Sr. 20 ppg- 6 rpg- 3 apg
- Ethan Happ, Wisconsin, 6’10” Jr. 18 ppg- 9 rpg- 4 apg
- Jordan Caroline, Nevada, 6’7″ Jr. 18 ppg- 9 rpg
- Mohamed Bamba, 7’0″ Fr. 13 ppg- 11 rpg- 4 bpg
- Udoka Azubuike, Kansas, 7’0″ So. 14 ppg- 7 rpg
- Charles Matthews, Michigan, 6’6″ So. 14 ppg- 6 rpg- 3 apg
- Vasa Pusica, Northeastern, 6’5″ Jr. 18 ppg- 5 apg
- James Thompson, EMU, 6’10” Jr. 15 ppg- 12 rpg
- James Batemon, LMU, 6’1″ Jr. 18 ppg- 5 apg
ToC END OF JANUARY REPORT, FEBRUARY 1, 2018
The High School Basketball season is coming to an end soon, and many ToC teams are primed for a deep state playoff run in 2018. Let’s take a look at the teams and players that are trending today.
*The Sam Houston MSTC Tigers, 24-3. Kendric Davis 23 ppg- 7 apg; Marlon Jackson 14 ppg; Henry Hampton 12 ppg
*Belleville West Maroons, 20-2. EJ Liddell 22 ppg- 8 rpg- 6 bpg; Malachi Smith 16 ppg; Keith Randolph 10 ppg
*Montgomery Carver Wolverines, 21-6. Jaykwon Walton 22 ppg; Jalen Gaston 19 ppg
*St. Louis Confluence Prep, 21-4. Brandon Fredrick 28 ppg- 5 apg- 5 spg; Leon Perry 24 ppg- 12 rpg
*Greensboro Ben L. Smith, 20-3. Isaiah Bigelow 21 ppg- 11 rpg; Jacob Crutchfield 11 ppg; Camren Hayes 10 ppg- 7 apg
*College Park, 17-12. Quentin Grimes 32 ppg- 8 rpg- 5 apg; Shannon Scott 13 ppg; Deon Blakemore 12 ppg
*Winston-Salem Prep, 18-3. Daivien Williamson 23 ppg- 3 apg; Chaz Gwyn 15 ppg
*Chicago Leo Catholic, 18-5. Fred Cleveland 20 ppg- 5 apg; DeChaun Anderson 12 ppg- 13 rpg; Malcolm Bell 14 ppg
*Chicago Uplift, 15-8. Toraze Dobbs 22 ppg- 14 rpg; Markese Jacobs 20 ppg
*Orangeville Prep Bears, 25-4. Ignas Brazdeikis 30 ppg- 8 rpg; Keshaun Saunders 17 ppg; Matthew Alexander-Moncrieffe 15 ppg
*The Rise Centre Academy, 24-6. Adong Makuoi 17 ppg- 11 rpg; Deon Ejim 14 ppg; Avan Nava 13 ppg
*Tennessee Prep, 15-6. Antavion Collum 25 ppg- 10 rpg- 4 apg
ToC SHOOTOUT SERIES
*DePue Little Giants, 22-1. Eddie Moreno 17 ppg, Manny Winfert 14 ppg
*Chicago Orr Spartans, 19-3. Raekwon Drake 17 ppg- 10 rpg; Dannie Smith 15 ppg; Chase Adams 12 ppg- 8 apg
*Chicago Corliss Trojans, 19-3. George Conditt 17 ppg- 13 rpg- 7 bpg; Dhashon Dyson 15 ppg
*Whitnall Falcons, 15-5. Tyler Herro 32 ppg- 8 rpg- 4 apg
*St. Louis Whitfield School Warriors, 15-7. Torrance Watson 32 ppg- 8 rpg
*Hillsboro Hawks, 19-3. Gaven Pinkley 20 ppg- 10 rpg- 5 apg; Michael Brewer 16 ppg
*Illini Bluffs Tigers, 19-5 and Indianapolis Howe Hornets 15-6.
*The Washington Panthers (11-10) are playing great basketball with some big wins of late. Watch out for the Panthers in the playoffs!
*Former ToC Super-Star Zion Williamson of Spartanburg Day School signed with the Duke Blue Devils.
*Williamson and Quentin Grimes of College Park, TX were named to the McDonald’s All-America team for 2018.
*St. Louis Whitfield’s Torrence Watson is averaging 32 points for the season- with a high of 58 points in one game.
*Jamarr Williams of St. Louis Northwest is averaging 21 points and 21 rebounds a game this year for the Hornets.
TOP 5 TOC SCORERS:
- Trevon Bluiett, Xavier, sr. 19.2 ppg Indianapolis Park Tudor, 2011
- Jhivvan Jackson, Texas-San Antonio, fr. 19.0 ppg Euless Trinity, 2013
- James Batemon, Loyola-Marymount, jr. 17.4 ppg Milwaukee Riverside, 2012
- Jordan Barnes, Indiana State, so. 17.4 ppg St. Louis CBC, 2013
- Ethan Happ, Wisconsin, jr. 17.4 ppg Rockridge, 2013
Field Goal Percentage%- Udoka Azubuike, Kansas, so. 76.2%- 1st in the nation
James Thompson, Eastern Michigan, jr. 68.0%- 7th in the nation
Steals- Jevon Carter, West Virginia, sr. 3.2 spg- 2nd in the nation
Blocked Shots- Mohamed Bamba, Texas, fr. 4.4 bpg- 2nd in the nation
Rebounds- James Thompson, Eastern Michigan, jr. 12.2 rpg- 2nd in the nation
Assists- Jevon Carter, West Virginia, sr. 6.8 apg- 11th in the nation
TOP SMALL COLLEGE SCORERS!
- Shea Feehan, Eureka College, jr. 31.8 ppg
- Martavian Payne, Lindenwood-Belleville, sr. 26.9
- Edvinas Rupkus, Skidmore, jr. 22.4
- Branden Jenkins, Texas Wesleyan, sr. 21.6
- Savon Goodman, Shaw, sr. 18.4
Anthony Davis of the New Orleans Pelicans was named to his 4th NBA All-Star Game!
Points: Anthony Davis, Pelicans 27.0 ppg 4th in the League
Rebounds: DeAndre Jordan, Clippers 14.9 rpg 2nd in the League
Anthony Davis, Pelicans 10.6 rpg 8th in the League
Blocked Shots: Myles Turner, Pacers 2.2 bpg 2nd in the League
Anthony Davis, Pelicans 2.1 bpg 3rd in the League
FG %- DeAndre Jordan, Clippers 65.6% 2nd in the League
John Henson, Bucks 58.9% 6th in the League
3-PT FG%- Reggie Bullock, Pistons 44.4% 4th in the League
Buddy Hield, Kings 43.2% 9th in the League
Top Performers in NBA G-League:
Xavier Rathan-Mayes, Westchester; Alec Peters, Northern Arizona; Georges Niang and Naz Mitrou-Long, Salt Lake City; JeQuan Lewis, Wisconsin; Winston Shepard, Santa Cruz; Craig Sword, Erie; Nick Johnson, Austin; Anthony Bennett, Maine and Mangok Mathiang, Greensboro.
5 BEST 2018 NBA DRAFT PROSPECTS
- Mohamed Bamba, Texas, fr.
- Austin Wiley, Auburn, so.
- Ethan Happ, Wisconsin, jr.
- Jevon Carter, West Virginia, sr.
- Trevon Bluiett, Xavier, sr.
39 former ToC Players have now made their marks in the NBA!
Who’s next to the NBA: ToC Prediction- Xavier Rathan-Mayes, Westchester Knicks
ToC END OF THE SEASON REPORT, DECEMBER 31, 2017
It is the end of the year of 2017, and there are several stories and trending topics regarded to the ToC and its former players list. Lets jump into the High School Scene.
TRENDING- PLAYERS and TEAMS ON FIRE!
*E.J. Liddell, Belleville West was named MVP of the Centralia Holiday Tournament after the Maroons won the championship over Champaign Central. Liddell is averaging 23 points, 9 boards and 5 blocks for the season. Malachi Smith, Keith Randolph and Lawrence Brazil also continue their strong play for the Maroons.
*Quentin Grimes, College Park averaged 36 points a game in the Holiday Classic in San Diego. He is currently averaging 32 pts, 9 rbs and 5 assists for the season.
*Chicago Orr (11-2) is on fire! The Spartans won the Proviso West tournament with a 77-62 victory over Whtiney Young in the finals. Raekwon Drake was named MVP and has had a tremendous season for Coach Lou Adams. Chase Adams, Dannie Smith and Tyronn Mosley have had strong outings throughout the season! Emmanuel O’Neil and Brian Hernandez continue to flourish as well.
*Hillsboro (12-0) won the Bob Sechrest Tournament in Park Hills, MO this past week. Gaven Pinkley and Michael Brewer continue to slam their way past opponents this season! Pinkley is currently averaging 19 pts, 10 rbs, 5 assists and 3 blocks a game for the Hawks.
*DePue (13-1) won the Princeville Tournament and Chicago Corliss (12-2) won the Teutopolis Christmas Tourney!
*Orangeville Prep (17-2) and The Rise Centre Academy (16-5) have faced tough competition all season, but both teams remain amongst the elite teams in Canada High School Basketball.
*Winston-Salem Prep (7-3) won the prestigious Frank Spencer Holiday Classic in NC. Daivien Williamson was named MVP in the event, but he received great assistance from Zack Austin, Chaz Gwyn and Justice Goodloe. Austin is on fire!
*St. Louis Confluence (10-4) is still playing great basketball. Brandon Fredrick is averaging 29 pts a game and Leon Perry is averaging 24 pts and 11 boards per game.
*Other trending Players include:
Fred Cleveland, Chicago Leo 21 ppg, 5 apg
Isaiah Bigelow, Greensboro Smith 24 ppg, 10 rpg
Kendric Davis, Sam Houston MSTC 24 ppg, 7 apg
Ignas Brazdeikis, Orangeville Prep 27 ppg, 9 rpg
Antavion Collum, Tennessee Prep 24 ppg, 9 rpg, 5 apg
Torrence Watson, StL Whitfield 28 ppg, 8 rpg
Toraze Dobbs, Chicago Uplift 23 ppg- 14 rpg
Tony Hopkins, T.C. Howe 22 ppg, 10 rpg
Tyler Herro, Whitnall 27 ppg, 8 rpg, 5 apg (Strained Calf- will miss 3 weeks with injury)
NCAA TRENDING PLAYERS
Jevon Carter, West Virginia 18 ppg, 6 apg, 4 spg, 5 rpg (Leads nation in Steals)
Udoka Azubuike, Kansas 15 ppg, 8 rpg (leads nation in FG%)
Mohamed Bamba, Texas 12 ppg, 10 rpg, 4 bpg (Top 5 in blocked shots)
James Thompson, EMU 16 ppg, 12 rpg (Top 5 in rebounds)
Kezie Okpala, Stanford 8.5 ppg- Just cleared to play for the season
Vasa Pusica, Northeastern 16 ppg, 5 apg (former Sunrise Guard starting to blow up!)
Trevon Bluiett, Xavier 20 ppg, 6 rpg, 3 apg
Ethan Happ, Wisconsin 16 ppg, 8 rpg, 3 apg (1,000 pts, 700 rbs and 200 assists in career)
James Batemon, LMU 19 ppg, 5 apg
ToC NOTES AND TIDBITS- DECEMBER 1, 2017
The 12th Annual ToC has come and gone, but there were several big time memories created by the teams and players involved in this year’s event!
10 Best Performers:
Kendric Davis, Sam Houston MSTC- 28 ppg, 9 apg, 5 spg
E.J. Liddell, Belleville West- 27 ppg- 10 rpg- 6 bpg
Quentin Grimes, College Park- 23 ppg- 9 rpg- 7 apg
Ignas Brazdeikis, Orangeville Prep- 29 ppg- 10 rpg
Isaiah Bigelow, Greensboro Smith- 24 ppg- 8 rpg
Antavion Collum, Tennessee Prep- 25 ppg- 10 rpg
Jaykwon Walton, Montgomery Carver- 24 ppg- 6 rpg
George Conditt, Chicago Corliss- 19 pts, 18 rbs- 9 blks
Daivien Williamson, Winston-Salem Prep- 23 ppg- 3 apg
Brandon Fredrick, St. Louis Confluence- 27 ppg- 3 spg
10 Players you have never heard of- but now you know who they are!
Isaiah Bigelow, Greensboro Smith- Overall the most underrated player in the event. Huge potential- will play at the highest levels.
Daivien Williamson, Winston-Salem Prep- Blow by speed with the dribble!
Brandon Fredrick, St. Louis Confluence- Quick on quick with a deep range jumper.
Avan Nava, The Rise Centre Academy: Sweet stroke from deep!
Adam Cash, Pekin- Only a freshman! Played very well throughout the event.
Lawrence Brazil, Belleville West- Came to play every day, excellent defender.
Camren Hayes, Greensboro Smith- An elite PG in the 2020 national recruiting class.
Leon Perry, St. Louis Confluence- An explosive wing who has great court sense.
Adam Francolini, The Rise Centre Academy- A pure shooter from deep range.
Chris Green, Sam Houston MSTC- Athletic wing who can get to the basket off the drive.
10+ Best Dunkers!
Silas Mason, Greensboro Smith
Quentin Grimes, College Park
Matthew Alexander-Moncrieffe, Orangeville Prep
Marlon Jackson, Sam Houston MSTC
Markese Jacobs, Chicago Uplift
E.J. Liddell, Belleville West
Mike Flenory, Chicago Uplift
Jaykwon Walton, Montgomery Carver
Raekwon Drake, Chicago Orr
Gaven Pinkley and Michael Brewer, Hillsboro
10 Best Perimeter Shooters!
Isaiah Bigelow, Greensboro Smith
Jaykwon Walton, Montgomery Carver
Chaz Gwyn, Winston-Salem Prep
Brandon Fredrick, St. Louis Confluence
Tyler Herro, Whitnall
Fred Cleveland, Chicago Leo
Quentin Grimes, College Park
Jalen Gaston, Montgomery Carver
Corez Anderson, Urbana
Brian Hernandez, Chicago Orr
10 Best Scorers
Quentin Grimes, College Park
E.J. Liddell, Belleville West
Ignas Brazdeikis, Orangeville Prep
Kendric Davis, Sam Houston MSTC
Isaiah Bigelow, Greensboro Smith
Jaykwon Walton, Montgomery Carver
Daivien Williamson, Winston-Salem Prep
Brandon Fredrick, St. Louis Confluence
Antavion Collum, Tennessee Prep
Tyler Herro, Whitnall
10 Best Backcourt Distributors!
Quentin Grimes, College Park
Kendric Davis, Sam Houston MSTC
Chase Adams, Chicago Orr
Antavion Collum, Tennesee Prep
Camren Hayes, Greensboro Smith
Avan Nava, The Rise Centre Academy
Fred Cleveland, Chicago Leo
Daivien Williamson, Winston-Salem Prep
Malachi Smith, Belleville West
Henry Hampton, Sam Houston MSTC
10 Best Contributors in the Paint: (Scoring/ Defense/ Rebounding/ Blocking Shots)
E.J. Liddell, Belleville West
George Conditt, Chicago Corliss
Adong Makuoi, The Rise Centre Academy
Toraze Dobbs, Chicago Uplift
Raekwon Drake, Chicago Orr
Leon Perry, St. Louis Confluence
Jaylan Gainey, Greensboro Smith
Joe Jones, Orangeville Prep
Keith Randolph, Belleville West
Dannie Smith, Chicago Orr
November 8, 2017
The ToC is less than 2 weeks away! Here are a few things to watch for in this year’s event!
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 21st GAME DAY BREAKDOWN
Illini Bluffs returns 4 starters from last season’s team as they prepare for one of the elite small school teams in Indiana- Indy Howe. Howe is led by 6’5″ Sr. Tony Hopkins (New Orleans).
Chicago Corliss and St. Louis Whitfield School will be a great matchup as Corliss’ 6’11” Sr. George Conditt will look to stop the slashing guard play of Whitfield and their Star-Guard Torrence Watson.
Washington kicks off their season with a tough matchup, St. Louis Confluence Prep. The Panthers will look to push the ball against the Titans, while attempting to stop Confluence’s super scorer, Leon Perry. The 6’7″ Sr. Perry averaged 28 points a game last season.
Belleville West will be playing in their first ToC game against pesky Pekin. The Maroons are led by 6’7″ Jr. E.J. Liddell and 6’4″ Sr. Malachi Smith. Pekin has several heady ball players who can score the ball from deep range. Keep an eye on 6’4″ Sr. Jace Link and 6’5″ So. Justin Taphorn for the Dragons.
ToC Collegiate Commitments for the Fall
From the ToC Shootout Series:
George Conditt, Chicago Corliss, 6’11” C – committed to Iowa State
Torrence Watson, St. Louis Whitfield School, 6’5″ SG- committed to Missouri
Tyronn Mosley, Chicago Orr, 6’5″ CG- committed to UW-Milwaukee
Tony Hopkins, Indianapolis Howe 6’5″ SF- committed to New Orleans
From the Washington Invitational:
Kendric Davis, Sam Houston MSTC, 5’10” PG- committed to TCU
Isaiah Bigelow, Greensboro Smith, 6’6″ SF- committed to Charlotte
Daivien Williamson, Winston-Salem Prep, 6’1″ PG- committed to East Tennessee State
Malachi Smith, Belleville West, 6’4″ PG- committed to Wright State
Jaylan Gainey, Greensboro Smith, 6’10” C- committed to Brown
Jacob Crutchfield (6’0″ PG) and Jaylin Gamble (6’8″ PF), Greensboro Smith- committed to Fayetteville State (DII)
Shannon Scott, College Park- committed to Labette Community College
From the National Classic: USA v. CANADA
Ignas Brazdeikis, Orangeville Prep, 6’8″ SF- committed to Michigan
Liam Courtney, The Rise Centre Academy, 7’0″ C- committed to Colgate
ToC NOTES AND TIDBITS- AUGUST 29, 2017
The 12th Annual Tournament of Champions is excited to announce a new format to this year’s tremendous field. The National Classic has been changed to an “International Classic” as two teams from the United States challenge two of the top teams from Canada!
The Orangeville Prep Bears and the Rise Centre Academy Wolfpack will feature elite talent that includes numerous future Division I stars, including Orangeville’s 6’8″ Sr. Ignas Brazdeikis and 6’7″ So. Matthew Alexander-Moncrieffe who are both Top 50 players in their respective national recruiting classes. TRC Academy will feature one of the elite dunkers in North America- 6’9″ Sr. Adong Makuoi.
Tennessee Prep and St. Louis Christian from the World Prep Association will tangle with these two mega-powers from Canada. TPA’s 6’8″ Jr. Antavion Collum is one of the most versatile players in America. Collum will run the point for a team that will feature a boat-load of DI talent. The SLCA Cougars return to the ToC and will feature several young, budding stars including 6’9″ 8th grader Teke Musaka!
The WASHINGTON INVITATIONAL will feature 12 outstanding high school teams from around the nation.
The #1 seed in the event is the Sam Houston Math & Science Tigers who finished 34-3, last season. The Tigers are led by 5’10” Sr. Kendric Davis who has already committed to TCU for next season. Davis led the Tigers in scoring, assists and steals last season. A second Texas team to watch is the College Park Cavaliers who features Top 10 talent- 6’5″ Sr. Quentin Grimes. The Cavs High-Major PG Grimes averaged 28 points a game last season for College Park.
Two teams from North Carolina will also be vying for the WI crown. Greensboro Smith and Winston-Salem Prep will feature several future DI performers. The Smith Golden Eagles will feature 6’7″ So. Silas Mason (Top 50) and 6’6″ Sr. Isaiah Bigelow. The W-S Prep Phoenix will feature a super quick backcourt led by 6’1″ Sr. Daivien Williamson, 6’1″ Sr. Justice Goodloe and 6’2″ Jr. Chaz Gwyn.
The Montgomery Carver Wolverines make a return visit to the ToC. The Wolverines were the 2014 WI Champions when they defeated Chicago Kenwood. Carver is led by 6’6″ Jr. Jaykwon Walton and 6’4″ So. Antwan Burnett, who are both rated as the top players in the Alabama 2019 and 2020 classes. St. Louis Confluence Prep Academy makes their first appearance in the ToC. The Titans are led by 6’7″ Sr. Leon Perry (28 ppg) and 5’10” Sr. Brandon Fredrick.
Illinois schools- Washington, Urbana, Chicago Leo, Belleville West, Pekin and defending Washington Invitational Champion Chicago Uplift will battle for the title in this year’s event. Belleville West is the #1 Illinois seed in the tournament and are led by Top 100 talent 6’7″ Jr. E.J. Liddell and 6’4″ Sr. Malachi Smith. Five-six Jr. Fred Cleveland (Leo), 5’11” Sr. Adrian Ware (Washington) and 6’5″ Sr. Toraze Dobbs (Uplift) return for another ToC appearance.
The ToC will also feature four exciting shootout games which will include:
Illini Bluffs challenging Indianapolis Howe on Tuesday, November 21st. Howe is led by the slick combo of 5’11” Jr. Kycia Washington and 6’5″ Sr. Tony Hopkins. St. Louis Whitfield School, MO will tangle with Chicago Corliss on the same night. Whitfield School is led by 6’5″ Sr. All-America Torrence Watson (28 ppg). Corliss is led by 6’11” Sr. George Conditt.
On Wednesday, November 22nd- De Pue H.S. will meet a big challenge when they face the Hillsboro Hawks of Missouri. De Pue has an enrollment of 114 students while Hillsboro comes in with an enrollment of 1,100. This is the David v. Goliath matchup! De Pue returns all five starters from last season’s 26-4 campaign. The Hawks are led by the strong duo of 6’8″ Sr. Gaven Pinkley and 6’5″ Jr. Michael Brewer.
THEE top Shootout game will be played on Friday, November 24th, when Whitnall, WI faces defending Illinois 2A champions, Chicago Orr. The Falcons are led by 6’5″ Sr. All-America Tyler Herro who averaged 28 points per game last season. Orr is led by four DI seniors: 6’5″ Tyronn Mosley, 6’5″ Dannie Smith, 6’6″ Raekwon Drake and 5’4″ Chase Adams.
The ToC Pre-Season All-Collegiate Team has been announced: You can go to the NEWS Section and click on Where are they NOW? to find out more information about the top ToC collegiate players of the upcoming season.
Top players to watch in 2017-2018
6’6″ Sr. Trevon Bluiett, Xavier
6’10” Jr. Ethan Happ, Wisconsin
6’11” So. Austin Wiley, Auburn
6’2″ Sr. Jevon Carter, West Virginia
6’7″ Jr. Jordan Caroline, Nevada
7’0″ Fr. Mohamed Bamba, Texas
7’0″ So. Udoka Azubuike, Kansas
6’6″ So. Charles Matthews, Michigan
6’6″ Sr. Jaron Hopkins, Fresno State
6’6″ Jr. Chris Clarke, Virginia Tech
6’7″ Sr. Vic Law, Northwestern
6’8″ Fr. Kezie Okpala, Stanford
6’7″ Fr. Brian Bowen, Louisville
6’5″ So. Xavier Sneed, Kansas State
6’10” Jr. James Thompson, Eastern Michigan
6’6″ Fr. Nickeill Alexander-Walker, Virginia Tech
ToC NOTES AND TIDBITS
The 2017 Tournament of Champions is right around the corner! This year’s event will feature the Washington Invitational, National Classic and ToC Shootout Series. The 24-team field will be announced on July 15th with all games being held at Washington Community High School.
The 2017 NBA Draft was held last week and four former ToC performers were amongst the group of 60 hoops stars selected. D.J. Wilson of the University of Michigan was chosen in the first round of the draft by the Milwaukee Bucks. Wilson played in the 2013 ToC for Sacramento Capital Christian and earned MVP honors after leading his team to the Super Showdown championship crown.
Sterling Brown of SMU and Nigel Williams-Goss of Gonzaga were both taken in the 2nd round of the draft. Brown was an All-ToC performer for Proviso East in 2011. Williams-Goss was the starting PG for Findlay Prep in 2010. Brown was taken by the Philadelphia 76’ers, but was traded to the Milwaukee Bucks, at the conclusion, of the draft. Williams-Goss was selected by the Utah Jazz.
The fourth and final player selected in the NBA Draft was a special talent that graced the floor of Washington Community High School from 2009 through 2013. ALEC PETERS was the best player in the 2012 ToC, and now that he has been drafted by the Phoenix Suns, he is an authentic Basketball Legend of Tazewell County.
Another former ToC star was also signed by a NBA team moments after the draft. JeQuan Lewis of VCU was signed to a free agent contract by the Milwaukee Bucks. Lewis was MVP of the 2012 Super Showdown event after scoring 50 points in a single game for Dickson County, TN against Grandview, Missouri. Lewis becomes the 38th NBA player from the ToC!
The ToC would like to wish continued success to these five young men and the best of luck to six other ToC alums who are fighting for NBA roster spots as free agents. The list of former ToC players who will be playing in the NBA Summer League include:
*Malcolm Hill, University of Illinois/ Belleville East HS, 2011
Oklahoma City Thunder
*Mangok Mathiang, University of Louisville/ Brehm Prep Academy, 2010
*Landen Lucas, Kansas University/ Findlay Prep, 2010
*Naz Mitrou-Long, Iowa State University/ Findlay Prep, 2010
Sacramento Kings and Indiana Pacers
*Dylan Ennis, University of Oregon/ Lake Forest Academy, 2009
Golden State Warriors and Oklahoma City Thunder
*Xavier Rathan-Mayes, Florida State University/ Huntington Prep, 2011
New York Knicks
WATCH OUT FOR CAMERON CLARK
There are several free agent ball players who have great chances of finding a NBA roster spot for the upcoming season. Former ToC star Cameron Clark of Oklahoma University and Sherman, TX (2009) put up huge numbers in France this past season. 2007 ToC stars D.J. Cooper (Hales Franciscan) and Xavier Gibson (Dothan Northview) both had super seasons abroad as well.
Three NBDL (now referred to as the G-League) players will continue chasing their NBA dreams this Summer and Fall. Patrick Miller (Hales Franciscan- 2008), Roosevelt Jones (O’Fallon- 2010) and Stefan Jankovic (Huntington Prep- 2011) look to find a spot with a NBA franchise.
MALCOLM BROGDON was named the 2017 NBA Rookie of the Year! Brogdon was the first 2nd round draft choice to ever be named Rookie of the Year. Brogdon was an All-Tournament performer in the Tournament of Champions in 2008.
It has been quite the year for former ToC teams and players! State Championships, All-Americans and NBA All-Stars have been all the rage this past winter. Let’s start on the High School level STATE CHAMPIONS
- Five 2016 ToC teams have won post-season championships! Anaheim Esperanza (30-3) won the California Division II state championship with a 72-65 victory over Moreau Catholic. Kezie Okpala had a sensational season for the Aztecs! Okpala averaged 30 points and 11 rebounds per game. A shout-out goes to Coach Mark Hill and his squad for a tremendous season. Travis Kettering, Brendan Harrick, Jared Obermeier, Brandon Alpern and the Geiger Brothers were amazing every step of the way.
- The Spartanburg Day School Griffins (30-6) finished as State Champions in South Carolina. 6’7″ Jr. Zion Williamson averaged 37 points and 15 rebounds per game and was a viral sensation with his thunderous dunks and highlight reel performances. Junior guard Chandler Lindsey also got into the highlight groove with some incredible dunks of his own! Congrats, Griffins and Coach Lee Sartor!
- Faith Christian School played a rigorous schedule which helped lead them to another Virginia State Championship! The Warriors were led by 7’2″ Sr. Brendan Newton (20 ppg- 14 rpg) and Noah Barnhart (15 ppg).
- Wesley Christian School, KY and Redemption Christian Academy, NY both won National Championships within their school’s federation affiliations. RCA’s Chris Duarte was unstoppable in the post-season averaging 33 points an outing.
- Several ToC performers lit up the scoreboard this past season!
- Cooper Neese of Cloverdale averaged nearly 30 points per game and became Indiana’s 7th All-Time leading scorer with 2,496 points! Neese will participate in the National 3-point competition in Phoenix on April 2nd. He will attend Butler University next season.
- Other top scorers included: Zion Williamson, Spartanburg Day 37 ppg; Taylor Bruninga, Illini Bluffs 33 ppg; Kezie Okpala, Esperanza 30 ppg; Parker Stewart, Union City 29 ppg; Courvoisier Mc Cauley 28 ppg and Jalen Moore, Cloverdale 27 ppg.
SPECIAL ITEMS OF INTEREST
- The Washington Panthers had another tremendous season finishing, 24-6. Devin Whitelow collected several awards throughout the season and will be attending Winona State University in the Fall.
- Several ToC teams finished the season with over 20 victories: Wesley Christian (33), Esperanza (30), Spartanburg Day (30), Redemption Christian (24), Washington (24), Legacy Charter (24), Harvest Christian (24), Illini Bluffs (24), Faith Christian (23), Chicago Uplift (23), Sunrise Christian (23), Union City (20), Chicago Kenwood (20) and St. Louis Miller Career (20).
- Former ToC stars Mohamed Bamba (Westtown School) and Brian Bowen (La Lumiere School) were named to the McDonald’s All-America Team. Bamba recorded 17 points and grabbed 5 rebounds in the game.
- Three former ToC stars were named to the NABC All-America team. Nigel Williams-Goss (Findlay Prep- 2010) of Gonzaga was named to 2nd Team while Valpo’s Alec Peters (Washington- 2012) and Wisconsin’s Ethan Happ (Rockridge- 2013) were named to the 3rd team. Peters became the All-Time leading scorer and rebounder for Valparaiso! Paris Lee (Proviso East) of Illinois State was named HM All-America.
- Three former ToC standouts are a part of the NCAA Final Four! Nigel Wiliams-Goss of Gonzaga, Dylan Ennis (Lake Forest Academy- 2009) of Oregon and Ran Tut (Brehm Prep- 2010) of South Carolina will be in Phoenix for the Final Four.
- West Virginia’s Jevon Carter (Proviso East) was named the NABC College Defensive Player of the Year!
- The ToC All-College Team consists of the following players
- Player of the Year: Alec Peters, 6’9″ Sr. Valparaiso, 23 ppg- 10 rpg
- Nigel Williams-Goss, 6’3″ Jr. Gonzaga, 17 ppg- 6 rpg- 5 apg
- Ethan Happ, 6’10” So. Wisconsin, 14 ppg- 9 rpg
- Trevon Bluiett, 6’6″ Jr. Xavier, 19 ppg- 6 rpg (Indianapolis Park Tudor- 2011)
- JeQuan Lewis, 6’1″ Sr. VCU, 15 ppg- 5 apg- 3 spg (Dickson County-2012)
- You can check out all the other top players on the Where are they Now? link of the NEWS Section!
- Most Improved Player- D.J. Wilson, 6’10” So. Michigan (Sacramento Capital Christian- 2013)
- Top Freshmen- Austin Wiley, 6’11” C Auburn (Spain Park- 2015) and Xavier Sneed, 6’6″ SG Kansas State (Hazelwood Central-2015)
- Top Small School Players- Lane Mahurin, 6’8″ Sr. Indiana Wesleyan (Rockville- 2012) and Torren Jones, 6’9″ Sr. William Penn University (Chandler Basha- 2010)
- Top JUCO Player- James Batemon, 6’1″ So. North Dakota Science (Milwaukee Riverside- 2012)
- The LA Clippers’ DeAndre Jordan was named to the NBA All-Star game alongside Anthony Davis of the New Orleans Pelicans. Jordan is the 2nd former ToC performer to be named to the NBA All-Star game! Davis was named MVP of the game, recording 52 points on the night!
- Buddy Hield (Sunrise Christian- 2011) of the Sacramento Kings and Myles Turner (Trinity- 2013) of the Indiana Pacers star in the NBA Rising Stars All-Star Game.
- Wayne Selden (Tilton School- 2011) became the 33rd NBA player from the ToC! Selden is currently playing for the Memphis Grizzlies after a short stint with the New Orleans Pelicans.
- Yogi Ferrell (Indianapolis Park Tudor- 2011) signs as a free agent with the Dallas Mavericks and scores 32 points in his very first game with the team.
The Oglethorpe Tournament of Champions was once again filled with top teams, elite players and super highlights! The following is a list of the 10 top Highlights from this year’s event!
- ZION WILLIAMSON of Spartanburg Day School put on the greatest performance in ToC History when soared to the bucket for a record-tying 50 points and 10 dunks in the Griffins victory over Proviso East. Williamson finished the tournament with 117 points, 48 rebounds and an astonishing 21 slam dunks! Williamson was named the Most Outstanding Player in the Washington Invitational and finished as one of the All-Time ToC Greats!
- KEZIE OKPALA of Anaheim Esperanza lived up to the hype, scoring a record breaking 133 points in the tournament. Okpala led his Aztecs to a 2nd place finish in the Washington Invitational with averages of 33.3 points and 10.5 rebounds per outing. Okpala was named the MVP in the Washington Invitational.
- CHICAGO UPLIFT was a high-scoring machine throughout the ToC. Markese Jacobs, Demarius Jacobs and Toraze Dobbs were all named to the Washington Invitational All-Tournament team. The Titans scored 106 points in a victory over Marmion Academy and won the Washington Invitational crown by defeating Anaheim Esperanza in the finale.
- DEVIN WHITELOW of Washington finished his 4-year career in the ToC by becoming the event’s career leader in assists and steals. Whitelow was named to his 3rd consecutive ToC All-Tournament team and finished his career as the event’s 4th all-time leading scorer.
- COOPER NEESE v. TAYLOR BRUNINGA was a tremendous small-school shootout matchup that more than lived up to the hype! Cloverdale’s Neese hit jumpers from 35 feet and scored 30 points as he led his Clovers to a 76-68 victory over Illini Bluffs. The Tigers were led by Bruninga who finished his game with 37 points and 17 boards.
- FRED CLEVELAND of Chicago Urban-Prep Englewood displayed amazing ball handling skills and deep range scoring as he led the Lions to the ToC Showdown title. Cleveland was named MVP of the Showdown, averaging 15 points and 3 assists for the tournament.
- CHRIS DUARTE of Redemption Christian was MVP of the National Classic as he led his teammates to the championship. Duarte sees the floor very well and explodes to the basket on the break. He is a future star guard at the next level.
- The 3 best dunks of the ToC! GOLD MEDAL– Zion Williamson of Spartanburg Day with 15 of his 21 slams. SILVER MEDAL– Elliot Gongora of Uplift with the Dr. J sweep Dunk! BRONZE MEDAL- Markese Jacobs of Uplift with the windmill.
- All the record breaking performances of the week.
- Sharing Thanksgiving with 240 ToC participants. Thanks to Christy LaHood at Countryside Banquet Hall in Washington for the beautiful Thanksgiving meal prepared for all the teams! Thank you!