With the school year upon us and the high school basketball season just three months away, it’s time to take a quick look back at the all-important summer months. The summer months are where reputations are built and solidified, news is made and college scholarships are earned.
Summer’s best player: Morgan Park’s Ayo Dosunmu
There was no player from the Chicago area who played at a higher level and grabbed more national attention this summer than the 6-3 junior guard. Dosunmu’s play was dynamic at times, with an innate ability to create and score with the basketball in his hands.
How high has he climbed? Dosunmu, the City/Suburban Hoops Report’s top-ranked junior in Illinois, is now among the top 20 prospects in the Class of 2018, according to both scout.com and rivals.com.
Biggest splash from an underclassman: Uplift’s Markese Jacobs
While 6-10 Francis Okoro of Normal West may be the state’s top prospect in the Class of 2019, Uplift’s Markese Jacobs has pushed his way into the conversation. That’s the type of impact the power-packed, athletic scoring lead guard made this summer.
Jacobs picked up offers from Loyola, UIC, Southern Illinois, DePaul, Illinois and Kansas this summer.
Summer’s biggest winner: Conant’s Jimmy Sotos
The recruitment of the Conant guard was relatively tame heading into the summer. Then it exploded after the 6-3 senior dazzled during the July “live period,” with a dozen-plus programs offering.
Sotos has received offers from and visited Northern Iowa, Drake, Loyola, Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Brown, Northeastern and Princeton, with upcoming visits to Winthrop, Bucknell and Furman.
Other summer winners
■ Justin Smith, Stevenson
The bouncy 6-7 wing played like the City/Suburban Hoops Report’s No. 2 ranked player in the senior class and one with upcoming visits to Michigan, Villanova, Indiana, Xavier and Stanford.
■ Teyvion Kirk, Joliet West
After putting together a terrific junior season and performing well on the spring club circuit, the 6-2 point guard had a surplus of offers. But his play in July netted several more offers, and he’s now among the top 15 prospects in the senior class.
■ Marvin Nesbitt, Butler College Prep
No one knew much about the athletically explosive 6-3 guard. Now he’s receiving a ton of college interest after a breakout summer. Nesbitt is coveted by Division II and low-Division I schools, while mid-major programs are poking around.
■ P.J. Pipes, Lemont
The recruitment of the 6-0 scoring point guard was slow heading into July. Now, a month later, Pipes has picked up offers from Denver and Wisconsin-Green Bay, along with a surplus of Division II offers.
Summer’s biggest story: Jordan Goodwin to SLU
First, the state’s top senior and consensus top 100 prospect, Belleville Althoff’s Jordan Goodwin, narrowed his list down to seven schools. Then last week he suddenly commits to Saint Louis and its newly hired coach, Travis Ford, without taking a single official visit.
Summer commitments: Jordan Goodwin, Belleville Althoff (Saint Louis); Connor Niego, Lyons Twp. (Holy Cross); Cameron Krutwig, Jacobs (Loyola); Trevian Bell, Joliet West (Wisconsin-Green Bay); T.J. Clifford, Downers Grove South (Western Michigan); Carson Newsome, Waukegan (Wisconsin-Milwaukee); Marco Pettinato, Lincoln-Way West (Lewis U)