Session 1 of the 2022 Generation Next Basketball Association “GNBA” hit the hardwood in Louisville, Kentucky this past weekend as part of the annual Grassroots Showcase platform and a host of talented prospects made their presence felt at the middle school proving grounds platform.  Here’s a look at some of those that stood out in the 8th grade division during the opening session…

Mason Darrell – 2026- Shooting Guard – Team GRIII – Darrell made some big plays at the Grassroots Showcase, particularly Sunday in an exciting back-and-forth affair with Team Wall. At one stretch the 5’8” guard scored 12 straight points (All 3s), to keep his team in the game. Team Wall won the game but Mason left a lasting impression on me and the Team Wall players.

Rylan Kelly – 2026- Small Forward – SFL Blackhawks – The Orlando kid really impressed me this weekend. He is a high flyer, who by my count had at least 6 dunks this session. He dominated near the basket, rebounded the ball well and was a menace on defense. Once he improves his shot, Kelly will be a name to remember in the 2026 class.

Jaxson Davis – 2027 - Hybrid Guard – Flight Athletics – Davis and his team played up in the 2026 division this weekend going 3-1 with the only lost coming on a last second layup. Davis plays aggressive on both ends of the floor and gets his teammates involved on the offensive end. He attacks the basket and finishes well at the rim. Finished with 21 points and 5 assists in the close lost to Martin Brothers.

Tevin Schultz – 2026 – Power Forward – Martin Brothers – Already standing 6’7”, Schultz was a force inside all weekend. He used his size and strength to score easy buckets for his team and displayed some solid post moves. The highlight of his weekend was a 28-point 14 rebound effort in a 2-point win over Flight Athletics.

Zavier Zens – 2026 – Hybrid Guard – Phenom University  –  One of the more impressive shooters in the class of 2026. The guard has great form on his shot when spotting up from three and doesn’t force it at all to hit them at a high percentage. Zens can also play with the ball in his hands and showed a high basketball IQ. Hit 5 three-point shots in a win Sunday morning.

Cornelius Barnett – 2026 – Combo Guard – Louisville Legends – 23,25,17,25 were the scoring numbers for Barnett in his 4 games at the showcase. He scored at all 3 levels, but what caught my attention the most was how he got to his spots in the mid-range area and knocked those down on a consistent basis. His scoring led his team to a 4-0 weekend on their home turf.

Jake Victor– 2026 – Shooting Guard – Illinois Attack – A versatile guard who did a lot on the floor but made his biggest impact with his shooting ability. He has great form on his shot and moved well without the ball to get good looks at the basket for himself. Victor  is a smart player that knows how to play and really works on the defensive end. He went for 23 in a win for the Attack on Saturday evening.

Yusef Gray Jr. – 2026 – Combo Guard – Phenom University –  Gray is an energetic playmaking guard. He proved to be incredibly tough to stay in front and can score the ball very well off the dribble while attacking the basket. He pairs his quickness along with good shifty moves to easily beat his man off the dribble. Helped led his Phenom University team to a 4-0 record on the weekend.

Antonio McCoy – 2026 – Small Forward – Team Wall The lengthy 6'5" forward was one of the top players in the event. He scored at ease, both inside and outside.  He rebounded the ball well and got out in transition to lead the break for his team. If his progress continues I can see McCoy soon being a top prospect in the class of 2026.

Amare Witham – 2027 – Point Guard – Yanders Law  - One think about Yanders Law is that they  are going to have some good guards. Witham fits the program well. He’s smart, athletic and tough. He knows when to score and when to get others involved. Had games of 18 and 19 points on Sunday.

Hazzan Efford - 2026 – Point Guard – SFL Blackhawks – Efford is a high IQ point guard that showed a great ability to create for his teammates. He does a nice job attacking the

JJ Walters – 2026 – Small Forward – CBA Black – An agile forward who plays well on both ends of the floor. Walters scored the ball well inside with some good moves facing up to the basket. With his size and good mobility, he is a quality and versatile defender that guarded both post and perimeter players over the weekend.

Colt Craghead – 2026 – Shooting Guard – MidPro Academy – Craghead scored 17 points in a solid win on Saturday afternoon. He was perfect from 3-point land (3-3) and rebounded the ball well from his guard position.

Rashad Davis – 2026 – Point Guard – Phenom University – Davis is a point guard that is a very effective player with the ball in his hands that made everyone around him better throughout the weekend. He moves extremely well with the ball with his tight handle. He can literally be a 1 man press breaker and then will get into the paint and create great looks for his teammates. A smart decision maker that was always a step ahead of the defense to rack up the assists. Had 8 assists in a win over Team Wall.

Kenan Pekovic  – 2026 – Small Forward  – Illinois Central Elite – Pekovic is a talented forward with some size and a nice versatile game. He’s a skilled scorer that was getting it done from all three levels. The 2026 prospect has a smooth jumper and shoots it well off the dribble. He also moves very well with the ball in his hands when he is getting to his spots.

Jayden Kimbrough  – 2026 – Shooting Guard – Martin Brothers – Kimbrough is a dynamic guard who just might be the glue for his team. He hits big shots, defends at a high level and overall just looks to be having fun while playing at a high level. He best attribute is probably his ability to knock down shots from deep but he can also attack the basket and finish through contact at the rim.

Dayvion Thompson  – 2027 – Hybrid Guard – Flight Athletics – Thompson played up the 2026 division this weekend and looked like he fit right in. The lefty has a smooth stroke from range and plays so effortlessly. He never seems rattled and is in constant communication with his teammates on the floor. Scored 27 in a last second lost to Martin Brothers.