These player evaluations are based on player performance from our recent Central Cali Prospect Workouts 2023 Top 20 Games Event held in early October. We selected the top 20 players from the graduating class of 2023 that have participated in our Central Cali Prospect Workouts that have been taking place since June. This evaluation looks at the top performers that made our Elite 8 Team. There are also a few players listed as notable players that performed well but fell just outside the top eight, as well as those players that received invites but were unable to attend the Top 20 Games.
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Goodwin had an impressive showing at an earlier Prospect Workout he attended with fellow Team Rampage teammates (AAU program based out of the Bay Area of NorCal) and it was a no brainer to invite him as one of the Top 20 2023 Prospects that has attended the Workouts in Central California. Goodwin asserted himself in Game 1 and was the leading scorer, putting up 17 points. Goodwin has a strong physical frame and he uses it to his advantage, bullying his way to the basket and finishing strong at the rim. Goodwin has solid handles, really nice moves to create off the perimeter, attacks the paint relentlessly and is a really creative shot maker from various spots on the court. In addition to his ability to get to the basket, Goodwin has a smooth shot and that stepback 3 ball is tough to defend with his ability to get into the teeth of the defense. Goodwin had 10 points in Game 3 to lead all scorers in that game as well. Goodwin was the top scorer in 2 of the 3 Games played at the Top 20 Games and made our Top 5 Performers.
Tyler has had a productive past 3 months and continued to show his growth and development as one of the Top Prospects in the Central Section for the 2023 graduating class. Tyler was one of the top scorers in all 3 games but in Game 2 he really found his stride and went on an 8-0 run by himself, leading Team White to a comeback victory. Tyler was adamant about getting to the midrange spots and did a great job of stopping on a dime and getting his shot off quickly yet under control. Tyler has shown improved ball handling skills, has a soft touch around the rim and can knockdown the deep ball to keep his defender honest. However, what makes Tyler such a threat on offense is his ability to get to his spot and consistently hit from 10 to 15 feet, using his height and length to rise up over his opponent. Tyler is a really good rebounder and does a nice job of pushing the ball in transition. Tyler played really well at Pangos Best in the West Shootout, hosted by Dinos Trigonis, the following 2 days after the 2023 Top 20 Games Event making for an all around great three days of basketball.
Wright, from Lancaster, has been consistent in attending events that we have hosted in Central Cali going back to last August when we helped put on the Inaugural Pangos Central Cali Showcase hosted by Dinos Trigonis. I have been fortunate to see Wright play in all 3 venues of HS basketball, and needless to say he has excelled in all of these environments. Prior to the Prospect Workouts 2023 Top 20 Games, Wright was named co-MVP of the Top 60 All-Star Game at the Pangos All-West Frosh-Soph Camp, hosted by Dinos Trigonis and Etop Udo-Ema, the week before and it was evident from Game 1 why he earned those honors. Wright had his lead guard skill set on display and was facilitating, getting to the basket, making plays and showing his range from beyond the arc. Wright came out in Game 2 on fire and scored Team Black’s first 11 points and was scoring from all 3 levels. Later in that same game he had one of the most electrifying plays of the event as he came off a screen and dropped a beautiful behind the back bounce pass to the rolling Emerson Jones for the finish. Wright has really nice handles, good control of his pace of play, is a willing passer that can also create his own shot, and continues to develop as a D1 prospect.
It is no secret that if you have seen Carraway play he is electric on the court and scores at a high clip. Carraway also attended the Pangos All-West Frosh/Soph Camp and earned a spot in the Top 60 Game. Carraway was an easy pick for the Prospect Workout 2023 Top 20 Game and has been a player I have really enjoyed watching play over the past 3 months. Carraway had double digit scoring games in 2 of the 3 games that were played and was the top scorer in Game 2. Carraway led Team Black with 15 points in Game 2 and carried the squad in the 2nd half. Carraway connected from deep a few times, used his quick 1st step to blow by defenders for the finish around the cup, and was effective with the floater down the lane. Carraway has creative handles, very shifty when on the attack, can stop on a dime and get his shot off, and is a high volume scorer. Carraway also showed continued growth and improvement in the passing game and delivered some very impressive dimes in the open court and the half court setting. Really like the way that Carraway competes and plays with a chip on shoulder, which keeps his energy levels high all game long.
The Central Section has a good amount of dynamic scorers with the likes of Cole Anderson, AJ George, Jincho Rivera, Jaylan Walton, Joseph Hunter and others. Holmes is amongst those players when it comes to being a prolific scorer that can create offense in a variety of ways. Holmes averaged over 20 points per game as a Freshman and those numbers will only go up this year as his sophomore season looms in the Spring of 2021. Holmes' ability to score at a high level was on full display in Game 2 of the Prospect Workouts 2023 Top 20 Games. In Game 2, Holmes got in his bag and went on the attack, getting into the paint and finishing in creative ways around the basket. Once Holmes had the defense on their heels, the crafty lefty got in a groove from deep with his go to stepback 3 ball from beyond college range. Holmes was key in helping Team White win Game 2 and finished with 14 points. There were 2 things that made Holmes stand out amongst his peers at the Top 20 Games Event. First, Holmes was just as engaged when he was on the bench (rotated players every 5 minutes in a showcase game format), hyping up teammates and yelling out words of encouragement. Secondly, and even more impressive was how he got to the facility. In an era when top players expect rides, hotel accommodations, tournament fees covered, etc., Holmes did not have a ride so decided he would take the train from Fresno to Bakersfield to make sure he was in attendance. That’s a major separator and a testament to his passion for the game. There is a lot to like about Holmes’ style of play and his competitive nature will make him a likely D1 player once his high school career comes to an end.
Jones is a very intriguing prospect from the Bay Area in NorCal and his previous showing at one of the Prospect Workouts made him an obvious selection for the 2023 Top 20 Games. Jones, along with Goodwin, made the 4 hour trip to participate in this event and made sure to leave his mark and was just on the cusp of making our Top 5 Performers. Jones was consistent scoring the ball throughout, but his most impactful showing was in Game 1 where he had 10 points and 8 rebounds. Jones was aggressive going at the rim, had a few dunks in transition, showed his athleticism on the glass and as a shot blocker/rim protector, and really worked well with Maurice Wright Jr. playing 2-man basketball and exploiting the defense in Game 1. Jones also displayed his capacity to stretch the floor by connecting on a few threes, which really opens up his game and allows him to get to the basket or use his midrange jumpshot. Given the height and lengthy build of Jones, he fits the look and style of play that coaches are looking for at the next level. If Jones focuses on improving his handles and creating his own shot off the take, then I could see him becoming a HM D1 prospect before his high school career is over.
Atwater High School has some very promising young talent that is led by combo guard Colton Dukes. Dukes was another player that was coming off a solid performance at the Pangos All-West Frosh/Soph Camp, and although he did not earn a spot in the 2 all-star games, he played well at an event with over 225 players from all over the Western Region. Dukes was a force on both ends at the 2023 Top 20 Games Event and he had a key stretch to end the 1st half of Game 2 that was very impressive. Dukes was dominant on the glass on both ends, has good handles to push the ball in transition after securing the rebound, and has quick 2nd and 3rd leaping capabilities. Dukes’ 6 points in Game 2 all came in the last 5 minutes of the 1st half and that surge was big for Team White, as they never surrendered the lead from that point on. Dukes plays with a relentless motor, intensity from start to finish on defense and offense, and does a really nice job of getting to his spots and shoots with a lot of confidence. I look forward to seeing the progression of Dukes over the next 2 plus years.
The Prospect Workout Event was for the class of 2023, but the way that freshman Deshawn Usochu has played in previous Workouts it was a no brainer to add him to the Top 20 Games Event. Usochu did not disappoint and despite not scoring a lot of points, the way he impacted the games in so many ways put him in the Elite 8 of top performers. Usochu is very athletic and has a strong, physical build that he uses to put his stamp on both offense and defense. Games 2 and 3 of the Event, Usochu got comfortable with his teammates and started to show his elite bounce. Usochu was snatching rebounds over bigger players, creating second chance points on offense or transition opportunities after collecting the defensive rebound. Usochu also had a few big time blocks, again using his leaping capabilities and accurate timing to defend the basket. Offensively, Usochu has nice handles, slithers his way through the defense, and can take and finish through contact when going at the rim. Usochu is currently playing for West Coast Elite’s 15u squad that features one of the top freshmen in the nation, Darrel Morris, and the promising 8th grade prospect, Gavin Hightower. Usochu is a key part of that Unit and his play at the 2023 Top 20 Games Event showed why he was chosen to be on such an elite AAU team.
2023 Jude Callahan (Mission Prep), 2023 Adam Silmon (Arroyo Grande), 2023 Prince Ellis (South HS).
2023 Andrew Meadows (West Ranch), 2023 ZJ Cotton (Hoover HS), 2023 Michael Davis Jr. (San Joaquin Memorial), 2023 Tyler Parr (Atwater HS).