It is that time of the year to give out some awards and recognize some outstanding performances from this travel season. The first category is Most Outstanding Player in each age group (Classes of 2024, 2025, and 2026). The MOP is simply based on who performed the best regardless of team success.
2024: Kevin Knox, Florida Rebels: The 6’5 wing, who recently moved to Overtime Elite from Tampa Catholic for his final season of high school, came out on fire during the first two sessions of Nike’s EYBL during the April live period and never let up. During those two weekends, he led the EYBL in scoring and was named First or Second Team by some national outlets. One outlet considered Knox the top offensive player of the April live period. He led the EYBL in scoring up until the last weekend. NBADraft.net noted Knox’s efficiency at the offensive end as well as a mature offensive game that allows him to play off his deep jump shooting ability to get easy layups and mid-range shots. Knox has also became adept at taking smaller players inside and punishing them in the paint. His defense is not to be overlooked as he has excellent length and lateral quickness. Knox has yet to announce his post-high school plans. He could stay with Overtime Elite, try out the G-League, or go the traditional college route where Louisville and Kentucky are among the many elite level programs vying for his services.
(6’5 V.J. Edgecombe of SE Elite and 6’9 Asa Newell of 1 Family also had great spring/summers and were given heavy consideration for this award)
2025: Carlos Boozer, Nightrydas Elite: The 6’9 Boozer was named the Gatorade National High School Player of the Year after his sophomore season and played at that extremely high level all spring and summer, never resting on his laurels. There almost isn’t anything left to say about his game as he has proven to be one of the three best prospects in all of high school basketball. He and his Nightrydas teammates pretty much dominated the EYBL 16U division, losing only twice all season and winning the Peach Jam title, which they also won last season at the 15U level. Boozer has proven to be a threat from all four levels and an excellent passer for a big. He averaged 20+ppg and 12+rpg over the course of the EYBL season. Boozer wasn’t just dominant in the EYBL. He was the leading scorer and rebounder for Team USA at the FIBA U16 World Championships which Team USA won in superior fashion, led his Columbus High School team to the Section 7 Championship in Arizona, considered the top live team camp event in June, and made the NBA Top 100 Camp All-Camp Team where again Boozer averaged a double-double. To many, Boozer is on a path to be considered the most accomplished high school player ever from the Sunshine State.
(6’7 Shon Abaev of SOH Elite and 6’0 Mikel Brown of SE Elite were stellar on the UAA and Adidas circuits respectively and given significant consideration for this award)
2026: Caleb Gaskins, Nightrydas Elite: The 6’8 Gaskins got an early jump on the path to this award as he made a major impact at the USA Basketball Mini-Camp in late March and was considered one of the top players in attendance regardless of age. At the camp, national scouts noted Gaskins’ consistent shooting, good instincts on both sides of the ball and potential as a volume rebounder and versatile defender. He was named to the EYBL 15U Session I first team and Session II second team by one national outlet. While Gaskins did not make the 12-man roster for the Team USA 16U team that won the FIBA World Championships, he still impressed onlookers with his production and potential. Gaskins will be playing his sophomore season at Montverde Academy.
(6’2 Jayden Jsoeph of Team Breakdown, 6’7 Chris Washington of Florida Rebels, 6’10 Marcis Ponder of Team Breakdown, and 6’8 Alex Constanza of Nightrydas Elite are each national level recruits after one year of high school basketball and were deep in the conversation for this award)