#Power24 – Weekend Emerging Names Pt 1

MARIETTA, GA – Another July Live Period event for OTR, another jaunt around the ATL-Metro for me, as once again with another terrific field of Southeast travel programs on hand I took my act to multiple locations to get a good flavor.

The coaching turnout was once again elite, as there just isn’t a platform in the Southeast region that combines the highest level of competition together with the highest number of coaches in attendance.

Here’s Part 1 with all 17U guys many of whom you may already know but others not so much who emerged from the weekend as must-see talents to track going forward (Georgia high schools in parentheses)

By: Keith Agran

Devin Long | SG | AC Georgia Select | 2023 (Providence Christian)

Easy to spot the smooth jump-shooter as Long has a good frame and is sturdy looking at 6-4, it’s his time this coming year at PC as their program said goodbye to the likes of Chance Thacker and Tony Carpio, he appears ready for the mantle as the top guy as the talent has always been there but with a more aggressive offensive approach with AC Georgia he’s taken the ball to the hole more assertively to go with the college-ready jumper, going to be a really solid college player.

Caleb Smith | SG | AC Georgia Select | 2023 

AC Georgia warrants two on this list as Smith’s play all weekend drew raves from scouts and coaches in attendance as he’s put a lot of work into his body and his game has seen the results, the Atlanta-area product is off to Combine Academy in NC for a prep year he will put his always high confidence level to work to go with a multi-level scoring game that has really taken off, frankly could have been in a 4-year school right now sans Portal but the prep year will serve him well and like Long will be a really solid college player.

Justin McCarter | SG | SEBA | 2023 (Osborne)

McCarter frankly emerged back during April’s two Live Periods as he started a dominating run of scoring performances back then, he’s moreso one of the most consistent Breakout guys of the spring and summer and little changed at #Power 24, often playing 4 spots for an undersized SEBA bunch one could say that has hurt his chances as he’s an obvious choice for the 2-spot a the next level, I say it’s only enhanced his value because at 6-5 with the ability to get dirty inside while also developing into a devastating face-up driver his resume has only expanded.

Malachi Harris | CG | North Metro Elite | 2023 (KIPP)

McEachern do-it-all forward Earnest Ofremu is also a terrific burgeoning prospect off this deep NME roster but seemingly my eyes are always drawn to Harris and with rapid-riser Jackson Bell sidelined it was even more imperative to follow Harris picking up some slack, playing at KIPP means his summers are even more crucial as the high academic will struggle to be seen in winter by those other than the diehards on the scene, to me he checks a ton of boxes for a next-level player as his running back frame immediately screams college-ready but the ability to effectively play both guard spots for you at 6-2 means he offers a ton, may not be a scoring machine game in an game out but the ballhandling, defense and willingness to fill up the stat sheet in other areas means he has the mindset to be a solid contributor for you as well.

Marcus Black | SG/SF | CP25 Gold | 2023 (Lowndes)

During last fall’s SH Report Fall League Lowndes came all the way up to Cumming and Black stood out right away on Day 1, fast forward almost a year and he looks even better as the 6-6 glider got work done from inside and out as he showed off an athletic skill package that was dynamite at both ends, whether cutting up a defense off the dribble, hitting the offensive glass or just plain high-flying over and around people there was a ton to be enamored with and the ceiling frankly hasn’t been reached, playing alongside Montverde Academy’s Ayomide Bamisile made for some seriously imposing stuff in spurts.

Christian Gary | SF | Smyrna Stars | 2023 (Osborne)

To say Osborne has exciting potential for this upcoming regular season is a sizable understatement with stars in the making like McCarter (above), 2023 bull Keshawn McPherson of Wood Elite, 2025 riser Akai Fleming of Atlanta Celtics and versatile 2023 Stars teammate Kevin Hicks also in the backcourt, this was my first extended look at Gary but his play was highly noticeable, an intriguing mix of athletic ability and natural basketball awares has him pressuring the defense with his long frame and finishing a the rim with regularity, at 6-6 and with Jon Carroll off to TSF he will be right there in the mix with McPherson around the basket.

Jadon Yeh | PG | BCB | 2023 (White County)

For those of us on the ground in scouting circles around Georgia Yeh is not a new or emerging name as the coach’s son has been playing up a level for years and shining with BCB in whatever role he took on, now finally settling in as a true senior in 17U his all-around stellar play at the PG position had coaches tapping me on the shoulder all weekend for more information, while not in the same talent space as Brandon Rechsteiner for instance the size argument for Yeh remains similar as he’s so good and so sound at 6-1 that he translates to whatever level he plays at next fall and will be a strong contributor and winning player for years to come.

Jaylen Sanford | PG | Georgia South | 2023 (Jones County)

This Georgia South team was stacked with Middle and South-GA guys who can really play with Tycen McDaniels and Jay King joining Sanford on a fun roster, for me Sanford has always been interesting with a 3-pronged package that can be devastatingly athletic, super-sound as a pass-first PG, or bunches scoring from a multi-level attack that screams next level potential, going to Middle GA and getting a better feel for guys like Sanford shows the incredible depth of Peach State talent and this is one like McDaniels and King surely worth the trip.

Keith Agran has lived in Georgia since 2011 and joined OTR as a National Evaluator in 2021. He previously scouted for Prep Hoops dating back to 2019 and has both a championship-coaching background on the HS-level and daily newspaper writing experience, both from New Jersey. You can reach him at keithagran1@gmail.com and follow him on Twitter @BracketSage.