Session 1 of the 2023 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…

Jack Kohnen – 2027 – Dual Forward – CBA Gold Elite – Kohnen does it all for his team. He scores at times, He makes the correct passes when needed, He initiates the offense in some of their sets, He rebounds at a high rate. His team has added some true bigs this season, and Kohnen is now playing more on the wing. Standing at 6-4 – He is a matchup nightmare for opposing teams.

Brady Welch – 2027 – Shooting Guard – Mid Pro Academy - One of the more skilled scorers at the 14U level. Welch can flat out shoot the ball. In 4 games, he connected on a total of 19 threes, including 7 in a close loss Friday afternoon. He’s also a steady ball handler, who can get into the lane and make the correct pass.

Caleb Battles – 2027 – Point Guard – Team Herro– Battles is a playmaking point guard and floor general for his team. He didn’t score a lot but made a huge impact on the floor with his distributing, reading the floor, timely buckets and communication to his teammates. He has good handle and very rarely made bad passes to his teammates.

Guy Turner - 2027 – Hybrid Guard – Griffin Elite – Turner is one of the better playmakers in the 2027 class. Turner is very tough to defend off the dribble with his quickness and can really pass the ball. Very unselfish player who can get his teammates going and then score the ball himself. What impressed me the most was his ability to get to mid-range and rise and shoot over his defenders.

Truman Wetzel – 2027 – Power Forward – Team Haliburton 18 months from now Wetzel should be a name to know in Wisconsin. He stands around 6-6ish and has really improved his game over the last 2 months. He runs the floor well, blacks and contests shots. This weekend he added scoring to the mix, having games of 16 points and 10 points.

Hayden Schroeder – 2027 – Small Forward – M14 Hoops – I watched Hayden play 3 of his 4 games over the weekend. The combination of size and skill for his age really impressed me. He posted smaller defenders, he stepped outside and hit shots from deep, and rebounded the ball well. Intriguing prospect who could turn out to be one of the better ones in 2027.

Max Jones – 2027 – Dual Forward – 24up – Jones came out and dominated right from the opening tip of his first game. Standing at 6-3 with a nice solid frame, he can attack the basket and finish but also has the ability to hit the 3. He also displayed a nice shot from deep in route to a 26-point performance in his team’s opening game Friday afternoon.