The big men from the 2007, 2028, 2029, and 2030 class competed at a high and efficient level this weekend in Chicago at the Midwest Melee Event. Below I am going to highlight some of the players that I saw…
The big men from the 2007, 2028, 2029, and 2030 class competed at a high and efficient level this weekend in Chicago at the Midwest Melee Event. Below I am going to highlight some of the players that I saw that I think could have some of the highest ceilings at the 4/5 position moving forward. Enjoy!
Out of all the players that I could start with in this article I think it is the most fitting to start with the biggest and lengthiest athlete I saw on the floor this weekend and that was Jared Van Donselaar. Donselaar is a 6’4 center with way above average hand-eye coordination for his size/age combination. All weekend long he was recording easy lay ups near the rim, monstrous blocks, and some strong rebounds. Not to mention that a few times the lefty showed what he could do by spreading the floor and knocking down a three or two with a hand in his face. When looking at a prospect with a lot of intangibles for the 2028 class. Donselaar has to be in the discussion. His size changes the outcomes of games when he uses it to its full effect. Something not many players can say out of the 2028 class currently.
At the moment Kyrie Hart is a 3/4 for his teams with the ability to move up to the 5 or down to the 2 if necessary. He had this on full display this weekend while making some impressive plays for his Illinois Warriors Elite 2028 squad. At one point in a contest I saw Hart score 9 unanswered points in a row while dishing out an assist immediately after this to follow those points. Offensively, he can shoot the ball from deep or midrange with a high-arching shot at an efficient clip, he can get past his defenders off of the dribble and score at the hoop, and he can create for others. On defense he is just as good. A player that is efficient and constant with his production on both ends of the floor. The future is bright for Hart. He has a lot of promise in his game.
Chase Marquardt put up a performance this weekend for his Wisconsin Blizzard 2027 team. In their Sunday afternoon matchup against Mil-Town Hoopers 2027 the Blizzard put on a show, keeping the game close and coming out on top in the end by a few possessions. A big reason for that being Chase Marquardt. Marquardt is a 6’2 lengthy forward who is a maniac on the boards. He rebounds at an elite rate while having an extremely high motor throughout the longevity of a game. To add to his rebounding ability he really understands his length advantage compared to his opponents. He keeps the ball high, has a nice touch with his back to the basket, and overall is a player that anyone would want at their 4 or 5 position at the 8th grade level. The future is bright for Marquardt and for so many more kids on this squad. I’m excited to see what they can do with it!
Max Schlemm is a player out of the 2030 class, which means there is a good amount of time for his game/body to change before he hits the high school level but as of right now, he is looking very promising. A player who can dribble down the floor, score in the post when he catches cleanly, and has a good head on his shoulders. In his teams game on Sunday against Team Tyus 2030 Schlemm held his own against another very promising young center. He moved with intent to get to his spots, put his body on the line, and played with a calculated aggression and finished through contact whenever he had the chance. I hope over the next few years he continues his growth but physically and when it comes to the sport of basketball. If he does this, the sky is the limit for him with the size and ability he possesses.
Melo Garcia was a consist scoring, rebounding, and defensive threat this weekend. Garcia, a 6’2 center out of the 2029 class, showed that he has some real drive and determination when it comes to the game of basketball. He is consistent on the boards, physical with his presence near the paint, and most importantly he displays the intangibles of being a team leader. Someone who will hold everyone accountable while listening to the coach and doing exactly what they ask of him. Garcia was one of the most well-rounded and promising prospect I saw this weekend. With how well rounded he was and the coaching he has to back him, he maybe a big time prospect to know for the future but only time will tell.