DALLAS, Tex. -- With close to 100 teams and a thousand players, the DFW Elite BigTyme March Fest had dozens of players from various classes that will go on to play at the next level. I picked nine players but I probably could have picked 50, there was that much talent to choose from.
Ariel Atkins, 5-11 guard, Cy Fair Nike Elite
I called Atkins one of the best female players I have personally seen live in my life and I’ve seen some of the very best. Atkins has continued to elevate her game the way she elevates on her shot and trust me this Texas commit can jump out of the gym. She played a huge role in Cy Fair’s early season victory against DFW T-Jack and before this season is over, I wouldn’t be surprised if she’s in the Top 20 nationally.
Shani Rainey, 5-10 wing, North Texas Shockers 2014 National Team
Rainey is one of several players on the Shockers team that is very talented and capable of playing at the next level. Her ability to get to the rim is right there with some of the best players in her class. That, along with superb body control, enables to finish no matter what. Add the fact that she can step out and hit the jumper as well as defend, makes her a hot commodity.
Jazzmone Evans, 6-5 post, Houston Elite White
Speaking of hot commodities, when you’re 6-5, chances are you will be playing at the next level and when you throw in being long and very athletic; the choices you have will be abundant. Evans has improved from a gangly freshman to a legitimate D-1 player and her stock continues to rise as she matches up against the top players in the country. This past weekend, she showed she has the ability to do some amazing things on both ends of the floor.
Erica Ogwumike, 6-1 guard, Cy Fair Nike Elite
I knew the youngest Ogwumike sister was going to be a big time player when I saw her running around the gym at five or six years old, how big was the question. That question was answered completely over the school year this season and echoed against T-Jack as her poise showed by knocking down back-to-back threes down the stretch along with some key defensive plays.
Ashley Hearn, 6-4 post, DFW T-Jack
That old saying “the best thing about freshman is that they become sophomores” certainly works here as Hearn has taken her game to another level. Not settling for just standing on the block, this young lady stepped out to shoot the 15-footer and also showed she could take a defender off the dribble. She is now playing under control and with her athleticism, big things are in store.
Lauren Cox, 6-4 post, NT United
I called Cox “Miss Triple Double” during her initial high school season however, the way she played in the BigTyme March Fest, I may soon be changing that to “Miss Quadruple Double.” Cox can shoot the three, handle the ball, in fact she even played point and is one of the best passing bigs in the state, right now. All that with the ability to anticipate and run the floor gave everyone in the gym several highlights.
Jade Williams, 6-3 post, DFW Elite Scholly Me
This group of 2017 DFW players is one of, if not the best pre-high school club team I’ve ever seen, trust me, that’s saying a lot. Every time I do a “Tip Sheet”, I try and select a different player and Williams number came up this time as she has been definitely working. It would be easier for me to say what she can’t do than what she’s can because this young lady is moving closer to “ very special” status each time I watch her.
2018 guard Charli Collier of DFW Elite Houston 2016 Capra (Photo by Simmie Colson)
Charli Collier, 6-3 guard/forward, DFW Elite Houston 2016 Capra
Someone told me this young lady wanted to play guard and after watching her for the first time last season, I’m thinking - the sky is the limit - as far as her being a post. Well after watching her this weekend, one play widened the sky as she anticipated a pass in the open court and in one motion went behind her back on one defender and nailed a 15-footer on another. It was done fluidly so I’m guessing she’ll be able to do whatever she wants before it’s over.
Nyah Green, 5-8 guard, Texas Preps Elite 2019
I heard the talk about this incredible sixth grader and when people asked me had I seen Nyah Green, I said no. Actually I had, on a video working out with Moriah Jefferson but let me say this, “ain’t nothing like seeing it live and in living color” because not only is she incredible, she has some amazing upside. When you know and understand the game like she does along with her skill set, well mindset too, I’m thinking she’ll end up being one of the best I’ve seen if not the best.