IPS' Summer Skills Showcase
Inside Prep Sports' Inaugural Summer Skills Showcase
Inside Prep Sports/By TJ Kelley
Inside Prep Sports' Inaugural S.S.S. brought together many of Michigan's top players in
2017 and 2018 as the brand new HYPE Rec Center in
Dearborn Heights, MI. played host.
6'7" 2017 pf Will Weems (Belleville, MI.) The Showcase's Top Prospect and the best I've seen in
Michigan's '17 class showed the want to be a small forward offensively but was dominant in the
post showing a soft feel around the basket and strong drop step finished with a righty-hook
hat was his bread butter. He made shots from the perimeter and/or mid-range in each of his teams
3 games. He has very good hands and has a very good skill set for a player of his age and size.
Weems can play above the rim, nears rebounding at the rim, moves well, blocks shots,
and went from rim to rim. He worked the pick and roll and did a very good job creating
separation while catching the lob pass at different angles. Developing enough foot-speed to
defend on the perimeter, versatility, and staying in the gym will be keys to this solid student's
success in the years to come.
6'3" 2017 gd/wing Brian Bowen, jr. (Saginaw, MI.) The Showcase's Most Versatile Player played all five positions whether it was by necessity or
returning to his natural back-court position during the Coaches' Pick'em Game. He scored from all over the court as he used a big first step
and pump fakes to get to the basket when he wasn't making mid-range and perimeter jumpers. He shot the ball well from the mid-range and hit
a number of 10' floaters when he decided to go through the free throw line. Bowen held his own against the taller Weems and Levane Blake in
the post and rebounded well. He knew how to get the ball up the floor through outlet passes or starting the break himself.
6'5" 2017 center Lavane Blake (Flint, MI.) The Showcase's Most Athletic Player provided pure energy and his athleticism was obvious as he
slapped lay-ups off the glass (sometimes for goal tending), dunked on the break, ran the floor, and was the Showcase's most aggressive
rebounder. Like Weems, he has a build that would lead people to think he will grow at least a few more inches but Blake needs to develop his
skill in the post and working to score from 10'-12'. The lefty has the agility, speed, strength, and length to guard the 3-5 but needs to
learn how to defend those positions while staying out of foul trouble.
6' 2017 combo guard Ronquavius Southward (Saginaw, MI.) The Showcase's Top Guard could have gone to a handful of players but Southward was a
shade or two better than most guards this Sunday. He did a great job of scoring in the flow of the game and defended as well as most. He's
an efficient scorer from the perimeter and in while also showing the ability to get to the basket when the opportunity rose.
5'8" 2017 point guard Christian Rodriguez (Godwin Heights, MI.) The Showcase's Top Point Guard was solid in drills but it was during the games
that the lefty really showed what he's capable of doing. He did a great job of getting the ball to his teammate Weems and often put him in a
position to score near the basket. His ability to score around the hoop with either hand after beating defenders off the bounce also gave
Rodriguez the advantage over other floor generals. He made the right plays the vast majority of the time and knew how to make plays correctly
with a flair that this was nothing new to him. While there are obvious areas for improvement much of that will come as he gets older such as
quickness on the defensive end, growing, and getting stronger his basketball IQ is advanced.
6'2" 2018 shooting guard/wing Daujuan Lee (Grand Blanc, MI.) The Showcase's Top 7th Grader showed the ability to beat defenders off the bounce
as well as any of the Showcase's participants. While the majority of his drives came off the right side many defenders what Lee would do but
still get beat. He was a strong finisher and competed throughout the event's instruction and games. The 7th grader showed quickness, very
good handles, athleticism, and knack for creating his own shot.
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