Rocky Top Invitational – 17U Eye-Catchers Part 1

GATLINBURG, TN – Such a great variety of teams descend on this vacation hamlet for OTR’s Rocky Top Invitational, it’s a favorite on the spring calendar for scouts.

I bounced between 17U and 15U most of the weekend, here were some of the guys in 17s who caught eyes, in multiple parts.

Part 1 (above photo credit to J Hillsman):

By: Keith Agran

Jaiden Jasper

Elisha Jones & Jaiden Jasper | G | 2024 | Ohio Crossover

Great to see the Cincinnati-based Crossover bunch come south with Jones and Jasper both making things happen in the backcourt and earning mention here as a twosome, Jones showed off a nice stroke from 3-land and was an effective and careful facilitator, while Jasper was active in transition getting out in space as the lefty also showed off some nice slash as a wing complement to Jones.

Jayden Cooper | G | 2024 | Crimson Kings 

Really drawn to Cooper’s offensive game as he was both physical out of the backcourt and slyly creative, hustle got him up and down the floor ahead of the defense and on the glass where he used a powerful frame to be solid rebounding guard, getting at the rim he was a handful drawing contact and when left alone from 3 he did not disappoint, good-looking all-around player.

Adrian Avery | G | 2023 | All Georgia Elite

Avery got a lot of attention from our staff over the weekend both Saturday and Sunday and rightfully so for the top unsigned guard from Dutchtown HS on the south side of ATL, good size and really good instincts he can hurt you inside and out  and play someone the ball and off and score it from both equally effectively, late in the weekend led AGE to a thrilling win Sunday by having a heater of a 2nd half with 21 of his 23 points to lead the charge.

Kaleb Santos | G | 2025 | Grassroots NC

Plenty of size and game to be playing up with the 17s as he joined 2024 Dirk Degraaf in a big and imposing frontcourt, I liked the old-school flavor Santos showed off with baby hooks and a willingness to not have to bull his way for every chance, love that he has another year to pack on some muscle and continue to hone both the interesting variety around the basket and his shooting further out, a name to know from the Tarheel state.

Cade Murphy | G | 2026 | Fastbreak Basketball (pictured at top)

Caught Fastbreak’s act down at Sweet Sixteen and came away impressed and Murphy and this crew in TN was also fun to watch, playing up two levels was a no-brainer for if I hadn’t done some background during the game I’d have thought he was a 2024 as seamlessly as he fit with the older guys, good frame already and an advanced game that dissects with both a clever mind as well as some great natural talent, the shooting, the passing, the impressive versatility he showed each and every time up the floor playing all sorts of roles, it was a heck of a sophomore package and this guy is headed for big things on the recruiting trail.

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 also spent 3 years as a sports writer at two newspapers in New Jersey. After a championship-coaching background on the HS-level also in NJ, he accepted the Girl’s Basketball Head Coaching position in May 2022 at Mt Bethel Christian Academy and now balances scouting and coaching still with a keen eye on talent around the region. You can reach him at and follow him on Twitter @BracketSage.