Top 16U Performers from the 2022 Bob Gibbons Tournament of Champions, Pt. I
SUWANEE, GA—The Bob Gibbons Tournament of Champions is perennially one of the best stages to catch up-and-coming talent whether it be in the 16U division or below. It’s a great place to see new faces or check in on the development of budding stars.
This year was no different. We have amassed a number of names of some future prospects. Today, we’re excited to bring you some of the guys who stood out to us from an absolutely loaded 16U division.
I like guys that play with confidence. It’s hard to be the best if you don’t believe it yourself. I like guys that take pride in winning EVERY game they play. In my eyes, Ellis could care less what team he was playing on or what court he was on as long as his team wins at the end of the game. I love his toughness and his ability to create off the dribble. It was his shot this weekend that sent a few teams packing including the championship game against AE 5 when he knocked down the hugh three-pointer near the end of regulation to get the win. At the end of the day, Ellis is playing up a division as a 2025 prospect, he is one of the toughest guards I have covered, he doesn’t back down and he wants to win. Loves to win. Some guys carry that need for winning in their shoulders, in their eyes, Ellis does too. - Justin Byerly
Boswell saved his best game for the championship. The 6-foot-4 guard out of South Mecklenburg High School (NC) was able to knock down some shots from outside and was able to score and transition and CP3‘s win over Team Curry. Boswell has the size for the next level, he has the quickness at the guard spot, and competes through adversity. In his first two games of the day on Sunday, he didn’t quite look like the guy that we have seen a lot of and he wasn’t playing at the level he usually plays at. Some guys turned it up a notch and with a championship on the line and Boswell did that when it mattered, scoring 17 points and leading CP3 to the win. Boswell is also a standout on the football field for South Meck. - Justin Byerly
I can’t think of a player that I’ve seen this spring that embraces doing the dirty work like Almonte. He just got wants to win, and he’ll do whatever he needs to do to make it happen. He’s also the best utility man I’ve seen. It doesn’t matter what role he’s asked to play, he’ll play it and thrive. He’s skilled enough to initiate offense and be a guard, but he has enough size and physicality to bang down low. My favorite attribute in a player is the willingness to be a vocal leader, and Almonte is that. When I sit down for an All-Stars game, I know I can count on hearing him encouraging teammates, calling out defensive assignments, and pointing people in the right direction on offense. It’s a difficult thing to get out of people. I struggle with communication sometimes myself, so when I see a younger player do it so naturally, I can’t help but be impressed. I know coaches love it too. - Josh Tec
Smith’s upside is ridiculous. With his size and length, he’s a no-brainer for high major programs. His versatility as a combo forward is what impresses the most. He’s a matchup problem. Smith can create off the bounce from the wing, he can use his size and length to play around the basket, and he can shoot it some too. He’s still scratching the surface of what he can be as a player. He plays at Sandy Creek High School, and we’ve seen a guy like Jabari Smith excel there. I’m not saying that Micah Smith will be Jabari Smith, but he’s very much cut from a similar cloth. Smith already has high-level offers coming his way, but by this time next year—when he’s going into his senior season—I think we’ll have seen tremendous strides in his development, and he could be one of the hottest prospects in the south by that point. - Josh Tec
Mohammed is one of the players that makes the game look easy, and I’d venture to guess that his teammates feel like he makes their lives easier because he’s one of the best passers I’ve seen this spring. He’s just so smart in his decision-making, he sees the floor exceptionally well, and he delivers on-target passes in tight windows to put his guys in the most advantageous situations. At 6-foot-5, he combines athleticism, length, size, and skill that make him a versatile mismatch on both ends. Mohammed guarded 1-5, he served as the primary ball handler on offense, and he excelled off the ball as well. He started things off by leading Team Curry to a win over a great Team Mookie squad in the first game of the weekend and never relented from then on. - Josh Tec