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July 27, 2013
LAS VEGAS -- Friday was spent watching games at the Las Vegas Classic and the Super 64. Stanley Johnson, Ivan Rabb and the Oakland Soldiers impressed at the LVC, but it was rising sophomore Josh Jackson of Dorian's Pride who stole the show on Friday.
Jackson in action
Rivals.com's first crack at ranking the class of 2016 is still at least a month away. When the rankings are released, one guarantee is that Jackson will be included. The 6-foot-6 shooting guard from Detroit (Mich.) Consortium was so good on Friday that it isn't a even a question of whether he'll be in the rankings. The only thing to be determined is how high he will start.
A wing with a pure jumper and range beyond the 3-point line, Jackson is a big-time athlete with lots of wiggle to his game. This is a kid who has hit his stride, and he is the best shooting guard prospect that Rivals.com has seen in the class of 2016. He may need to be in the discussion for top overall player in his class.
The bottom line is that Jackson is an exciting player who has potential star power down the road. He has a blast on the floor, and his style makes him a crowd favorite. Jackson isn't doing interviews yet, but he's going to be a prospect coveted by coaches at the highest levels of college basketball. Michigan State's Tom Izzo was on hand Friday night, and the many others who have major interest include Louisville, Kansas, Michigan, Florida State, Ohio State and Oregon.
Johnson and Rabb strong in win
Toward the end of the Oakland Soldiers' afternoon win over Friends of Hoop, five-star Stanley Johnson flipped things on Rivals.com. All smiles as his team finished a win filled with highlight dunks, the Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei star looked back from his bench and asked where Rivals.com thought he was going to school.
He declined our invitation to announce his college decision, but he didn't decline a chance to once again demonstrate his dominance. There's not much left to say about the way he blends power, skill and feel for the game, other than he's making a strong push to move up from his No. 8 ranking into 2014's top five.
Already in the top five of the class of 2015, 6-foot-9 post man Ivan Rabb is looking like he will stay there. Rabb always has been a good athlete with length and quickness, and that shouldn't change. But he is starting to add strength and his skill level is noticeably improved.
Rabb plays with much more power, and because he's a threat to hit short jumpers, make jump hooks or whip passes to cutters in the lane, he's only going to become more difficult to guard. Rabb always rebounds the basketball, and he plays with toughness on each end of the floor. It was two summers ago, when he was a freshman to be, that Rivals.com first wrote about the power forward's potential, and he continues to get better each time out.
Final Friday notes
Myles Stewart has made great use of July. The 6-foot-3 shooting guard from Los Angeles (Calif.) Westchester has been strong for Cal Supreme, and he played well on Friday. Stewart hits shots, he does just enough off the dribble to keep defenders honest, and he's a good defender. A three-star prospect, Stewart said on Friday that he's yet to receive his first offer, but that will soon change. Among those who have shown interest are Pepperdine, USC, Loyola Marymount, Cal State Northridge and Cal State Bakersfield.
Jamie Orme is another under-the-radar West Coast wing who looked like a solid mid to upper-end mid-major prospect on Friday. A 6-foot-5 swingman playing for Friends of Hoop, he hit 3s and made athletic finishes at the cup. Orme mentioned that he has had initial contact with Washington State, Portland State, Montana and UC Davis.
In the class of 2016, power forward Solomon Young is quickly racking up fans. A 6-foot-6 power forward from Sacramento, Young has reached beast status and he was impressive on Friday. With a strong frame, long arms and athleticism, Young plays much bigger than his size. It looks like he will be a solid shooter when facing the hoop. Young just turned 15 a few months ago, and he already looks like a high-level prospect.
Another 2016 prospect from California to keep an eye on is 6-foot-5 wing Oscar Frayer. Playing on the loaded Oakland Soldiers, he doesn't get huge minutes, but his physical tools are obvious. He's a high-end athlete who looks like a high-major prospect all the way.
Washington looks like it has gotten a solid player in Donaven Dorsey. The 6-foot-6 wing has added needed strength since the last time we saw him, and as a result he looks like a much better finisher. He fits right in with Lorenzo Romar's style of play.
Jackson was the main show for Dorian's Pride, but four-star power forward Jaylen Johnson impressed as well. One of the bigger risers during the last update to the 2014 Rivals150, Johnson looks like he's still on his way up. Very young for his class, Johnson won't turn 17 for another month and he's got more skill than he is given credit for.