Basketball Recruiting - Shaw's Takeaways: Big Shots Prep Nationals
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Shaw's Takeaways: Big Shots Prep Nationals

Jonas Aidoo
Jonas Aidoo (Shun Williams/OnTheRadarHoops)

ROCK HILL, S.C. – Fifty-six teams from across the United States and Canada convened outside of Charlotte to take part in the Big Shots Prep Nationals event. Rivals.com’s Jamie Shaw was on hand for all three days of the event and here are some awards he saw fit to hand out.

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2021 Rankings: Rivals150 | Team | Position

2022 Rankings: Rivals150 | Team | Position

2023 Rankings: Top 30

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THE MVP

Geronimo de la Rosa committed to Columbia on February 12 and he played pressure free, while putting on a show for the entirety of the Big Shots Prep Nationals. He led his Spring Creek Christian team to the Gold Division Championship showcasing an adept shooting touch with a knack for scoring the basketball, as well as playmaking and creation ability. De la Rosa averaged 18.7 points for the weekend, but it was the complete command he had of the offense that settled everything in for his team.

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TOP ROOKIE

The best freshman was Dellquan Warren, who came into this event with a pair of offers. It will not be long before a long list of Power Five programs will be jockeying for position here. The lefty lead guard was arguably the best player on the floor for each of his games. While Maryland and Youngstown State have already stepped forward Warren says he thinks St John’s and Indiana are going to jump into the mix soon. The Ohio native calls himself a huge fan of Rajon Rondo, and with the way he is able to manipulate the ball in traffic and see the floor, it is easy to see why. Warren's toughness cannot be questioned, as he dislocated his shoulder during his Friday contest but did not come out of the game.

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MOST IMPROVED

The unsigned senior who could soon blow up was Aaron Scott, who came into Big Shots Prep Nationals with offers from the likes of Texas State, North Texas, McNeese State, and Pacific. After showcasing his full versatility during the week, Scott is walking away from the event hearing from Iowa State and Mississippi State. Scott is a lengthy skilled forward, who is comfortable toggling between each forward positions. He says he is close to wanting to make a decision; however, these Power Five schools are asking him to wait until they know what their roster will look like next season. Don't be surprised to see more programs like Iowa State and Mississippi State start making calls.

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RIM PROTECTOR

Jerome Beya is a ferocious player around the basket. His athleticism and motor play a factor on both ends of the floor. When talking to Beya, who averaged 5.7 blocks per game for the event, he says he models his game after Dennis Rodman right now, but he is working to get more like a young Blake Griffin. While Beya says he is in no rush to make a college decision, it would make sense to see the young game-changer’s offer sheet continue to grow from now to the end of the summer.

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MR. SHARPSHOOTER

Not only did Maki Johnson knock down shots, but he also knocked them down in big moments as he had two buzzer beaters on the weekend. Only a sophomore, Johnson carries offers from Maryland, Virginia Tech, Auburn, Ole Miss, Xavier and others. There is a smooth feel to the shooting guard’s game, but he also has some sneaky bounce with good length. His coach says he reminds him a little of Isaac McKneely, another noted West Virginian sharpshooter. Watch closely to the development of this one.

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BRIGHT FUTURE

Amier Ali does not hold any offers yet, but the 6-foot-8 freshman was comfortable on the ball, showcased high level vision and played the critical minutes for his championship winning team. Only a freshman, Ali says Wake Forest, Virginia Tech and Texas Tech are recruiting him the hardest now. He should enjoy a national-level recruitment before too long.

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NORTH OF THE BORDER

Coming into this event, I had not seen much of Romad Dean, but I definitely knew his name after the first night of the event. He went four of five from beyond the 3-point arc, and finished with a huge tip-dunk and an alley-oop. Dean claims over 10 offers from the likes of Arizona State, Seton Hall, Minnesota, Ole Miss, East Carolina, USC and more. This was Dean’s first time to play in a year, as he did not participate in travel ball last summer. His star is on the rise.

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COMPARISON OF THE WEEK

The comparison game is a tricky one to play. However, one going around Big Shots Prep Nationals that caught my attention was comparing Jonas Aidoo to Myles Turner at the same stage. Aidoo, who is a late bloomer, has intriguing length with great hands with a nice face up game. Defensively, he is a noted rim protector, but he showed the ability to move his feet, as he guarded 2022 Rivals150 No. 6 Keyontae Johnson in space at times during the team’s matchup. Aidoo, who turned 18-years-old in December, has sky-rocketed up the rankings and there could be some more movement ahead.