The Carolina Corner with @JustinByerly
In this week's edition of The Carolina Corner we take a look at one of NC's best scorers, NC State making Styles a priority, Dorman debuts in MaxPreps rankings, a Bojangles Bash preview and a recruiting update.
Brafford Putting Up Huge Numbers
Tuscola High School junior Nate Brafford has been scoring at a higher rate than anyone in the state. The 6-foot-8 forward scored 49 points last night against North Henderson HS and scored 51 points on Friday night gainst Enka HS. Brafford made of 7-14 shots from beyond the three-point line and was 15-23 from the field last night. “It’s just now starting to click with me on how hard I should play and playing to my strengths.” He spent the travel season playing with Team Charlotte on the Under Armour 16U circuit. Brafford’s length and his ability to stretch the floor along with his natural scoring ability is sure to start attracting some coaches back to the mountains of Western North Carolina. So far his recruitment is some interest from UNC-Asheville, Old Dominion, University of Pennsylvania, and Davidson.
NC State Making Styles Priority
Kinston’s junior forward Dontrez Styles is currently ranked as the #2 prospect in the HoopSeenNC 2021 rankings only behind Leesville Road junior point guard Carter Whitt. Last night, NC State Head Coach Kevin Keatts was in attendance as Styles scored 22 points and grabbed 9 rebounds in a win against Washington HS 73-70. Keatt’s offered Styles who played on the Nike circuit with Team CP3 back in July. One thing Keatt’s has made a priority on is recruiting the state of North Carolina.
Dorman Makes Debut in MaxPreps Rankings
The defending SCHSL 5-A state champions make their debut in the MaxPreps Top 25 High School Basketball Rankings at #25 this week. Dorman is led by Clemson signee PJ Hall and Butler signee Myles Tate. The Cavaliers are off to a 2-0 start with wins over Peachtree Ridge (GA) and North Augusta (SC). Up next this week for Dorman is the toughest portion of their schedule with games against Oak Hill Academy (VA) and Huntington Prep (WV. I will be at their match-up against Huntington Prep at The Bojangles Bash in Columbia, South Carolina.
Bojangles Bash Preview
The Bojangles Bash in Columbia, South Carolina starting on Thursday is the second-stop for me over the next three weekends at events in the Southeast including the Chick-Fil-A Classic, The John Wall, and The Beach Ball Classic. The Bash, held at Ridge View High School is right up there in terms of talent as the other tournaments and should be a good chance to see some high-level basketball and some top teams from North and South Carolina. You can see the entire schedule here.
Top Friday Games
6:30PM - Moravian Prep (NC) vs. Aspire Basketball Academy (KY) - This should be a good one with Kansas signee Gethro Muscadin, 2021 shooting guard Kidtrell Blocker who has offers from Siena, IUPUI, St. Bonaventure, Buffalo, and Canisius taking on NC State signees Josh Hall and Shakeel Moore. Moravian Prep also boasts 2020 forward Javarzia Belton, 2020 guard Jamahri Harvey and Luke Davis.
9:30PM - Oak Hill Academy (VA) vs. Ridge View HS (SC) - Ridge View and South Carolina signee Javon Benson, along with 5-foot-10, 2020 guard Cincere Scott, 6-foot-2, 2021 guard Tyler Rice who has offers from Elon, Penn State, South Carolina-Upstate and Western Carolina and 6-foot-7 freshman Gregory Jackson take on Hall of Fame Coach Steve Smith and his Oak Hill Academy (VA) Warriors who feature LSU bound senior Cam Thomas, Arkansas commit KK Robinson, Virginia Tech signee Darius Maddox and Georgetown signee Jamari Sibley.
Two Cannon School Prospects Add Offers
5-star sophomore guard Jaden Bradley out of Cannon School (NC) picked up another SEC offer today. This time coming from Nate Oats and The University of Alabama. When the HoopSeenNC 2022 rankings drop over the next month, Bradley will sit atop the rankings. We saw Bradley last at The Charlotte Hoops Challenge where he was named a top-performer.
DJ Nix, another 2022 prospect out of The Cannon School (NC) who will also be in our top-10 for our 2022 rankings, has picked up an offer from Washington State. The 6-foot-6 small forward showcased his play at The Charlotte Hoops Challenge scoring 26 points in each game and showing that he is one of the best shooting small forwards in the region. Nix was also named a top-performer at the event.
Two Carmel Christian Standouts Grab Offers
2021 forward Ben Burnham picked up his first offer from Winthrop and 2021 guard Justin Taylor, both of Carmel Christian also picked up an offer from Pay Kelsey and Winthrop. Burnham was impressive when I saw him a few weeks ago at Carolina Day School in a blow-out win. I thought he was one of the most impressive players on the floor with his size and his ability to run the floor and finish. The Fort Mill, South Carolina native has seen his recruitment really pick up since coming to Charlotte for his junior season.
Taylor, a 6-foot-2 guard adds the Winthrop offer to go with North Carolina A&T, Elon and South Florida, A natural playmaker, Taylor can score from all spots on the floor and has become a hot commodity for Southeast schools looking for that attribute at the next level. Head Coach Joe Badgett has had his fair share of recruitable players come through Carmel Christian over the past two seasons and Taylor and Burnham are on the same track.
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