basketball Edit

Nike Elite 100: Takeaways from staff

Terrence Clark
Terrence Clark (Jon Lopez/Nike @NikeEYB)

ST. LOUIS -- Annually, Nike's Elite 100 is one of premier settings to evaluate top underclass talent. The idea is to expose rising sophomores and juniors to high level competition in a controlled environment with minimal distraction and an observation only atmosphere. analysts Eric Bossi and Corey Evans are both on hand and offer up some observations from the first two days of action.


What more could somebody want from an elite level wing prospect preparing for his junior year? Johnson has great size (measured 6'7.5" and 208 pounds), plays with a high level motor, scores inside and out and has an off the charts basketball IQ. An argument could be made that he's the most gifted passer in attendance at the Elite 100. -- Bossi

Who is involved: Wisconsin, Marquette, Iowa, Arizona, Illinois, Arizona State, Purdue, Florida, Minnesota, LSU, UNLV and many others have offered.

Where others are just trying to fit in, Cade Cunningham was standing out with his alpha-dog like abilities as he showed tremendous versatility with the ball in his hands. The five-star sophomore is best used a playmaking agent for his team and his unselfish demeanor only helps his case even further. Friday night was another statement evening for Cunningham as his decision-making, improved shooting, scoring in the lane and mulit-positional abilities were all on point, creating one of the top standouts in St. Louis thus far. -- Evans

Who is involved: Kansas, LSU, Texas, Texas A&M, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State and many others.

Pound for pound, there aren't many more talented prospects competing in St. Louis than B.J. Boston. The long-bodied wing has come on of late displaying the ability to check many of the boxes one looks for in an elite level recruit. He wields a fluid jumper out of the perimeter, sneaky athleticism at the basket, underrated passing skills and the light frame to sit down and guard 2s and 3s out top. He didn’t have a great afternoon session on Friday but to end the night, Boston made sure everybody in the gym knew he was one of the best. -- Evans

Who is involved: Georgia, Georgia Tech, Florida, Florida State, Iowa State, Auburn, Alabama and a slew of others.

Cooper did what he has done all spring long, which is control the pulse of the game with his shifty ball handling abilities, unbelievable pace for the game where he never seems to get rattled and playmaking in the lane. He's not the biggest final stat sheets tend to back up Cooper’s claim that he is one of the best lead guard prospects in his 2020 class. Alongside highly touted scoring guards Nimari Burnett and Josh Christopher, Cooper made things so much easier for the standout sophomores, a reflection of Cooper’s evolution into a complete point guard. -- Evans

Who is involved: Georgia, Georgia Tech, Auburn, Florida, Florida State, Alabama and Rutgers.

A bigger guard that can be run at the 1 or the 2, Taitz is a versatile player. When it comes to making the right play, delivering precise passes, or knocking down the timely shot, Taitz is just the guy for the job. There are shades of former Villanova standout Ryan Arcidiacono to him thanks to his added size on the perimeter and the intangibles that he presents. It has been a strong week altogether for him as he looks to be one of the more well-rounded sophomore guards nationally. -- Evans

Who is involved: Stanford, DePaul, Oklahoma, Nevada, UNLV and Washington sit as some of his top offers.

A well-built sophomore that has been thought of as a scoring guard in the past, Torrence unveiled other aspects of his game on Friday evening. While he can go and get a bucket out of the mid-range and at the rim, it was his passing in the lane and off of the high ball screen that really stood out. Toss in his willingness to defend both guard positions in the backcourt, remain involved for the 50-50 play and show quality composure for his team and what you have is a well-rounded guard that can do a plethora of things for his unit. -- Evans

Who is involved: VCU, Providence, George Washington, Umass and Cincinnati.

A smooth and polished scorer off the dribble, Love has great pace and uses changes of speed and direction well. What is most notable is that he is looking more and more like his college future will be as a big point guard who can play on or off the ball. He's on an upward trend of late. -- Bossi

Who is involved: Illinois and Northwestern are Love's most recent offers joining Missouri, Iowa, Kansas State and St. Louis among others.

Stevens has a future as a feels like leather all-star because if he's got the ball in his hands, he's thinking let it fly. While he has supreme confidence in his shot, he doesn't jack bad shots and he appears to be a lights out shooter with deep range. Stevens is going to be a priority for teams needing pure scoring in 2020. -- Bossi

Who is involved: Nearby Maryland was the first power conference team to offer Stevens earlier in the week, they won't be the last.

I actually went to the same high school (Leavenworth (Kans.) High) and have known Baldwin's father Pat Sr. -- now the head coach Wisconsin Milwaukee -- since I was 15 years old so this one is a bit of a trip for me. Whereas Sr. was a tough-as-nails point guard and big time defender, the younger Baldwin is a tall and rangy wing with a level of skill that's hard to believe for such a young player. At this point, Baldwin Jr. is in the discussion for best prospect nationally in 2021. -- Bossi

Who is involved: Northwestern (where his father played), Illinois, Marquette, Minnesota, DePaul, USC, Kansas State and UNLV have already offered.

Like Patrick Baldwin above, Terrence Clarke is on the short list when it comes to discussing the top prospects in the class of 2021. Clarke is a long and rangy wing who has already impressed during the spring playing up on the 17U level of Nike's EYBL for Expressions Elite. Against his peers in St. Louis, Clarke has been a star and has been shooting the ball well from deep to go along with his off the dribble ability. -- Bossi

Who is involved: UConn, Rhode Island and Georgia Tech have dropped early offers.