COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo.- After three practice session at the USA 16U National Team trials, Malik Newman and several other players separated themselves as the top candidates to lead the USA in the FIBA Americas Championship.
Malik Newman has led the charge at the USA 16U trials.
Newman has been sensational during the practices and has clearly established himself as the top player and leader in this 30 player group. His shooting has been on point, and he has done an exceptional job penetrating and dishing the basketball. Known for his scoring, Newman has actually been the best point guard at the trials.
6-4 freshman Mustapha Heron has been the second best point guard in attendance. The lefty is both physical and quick and has made shots while distributing as well.
Malik Monk, an athletic 6-3 2016 prospects stands a good chance at grabbing the top shooting guard slot on the team. Although having tremendous athleticism, Monk has played with control and poise. He can make a variety of shots and has taken care of the basketball.
2016 prospect Jayson Tatum has been the top small forward. At 6-7 Tatum has an advance feel for the game and a complete skill set.
2016 combo forward Josh Jackson has impacted the play with his athleticism and versatility.
2016 sensation Harry Giles has been the top big man at the trials. He has played with as much size as any of the big men and is also the most skilled of the group. Capable of playing small forward, Giles will likely be the primary four man for the USA and also play the five.
Elite athlete Ivan Rabb has made his typical imprint on the game around the rim. He has blocked shots, rebounded and finished in traffic.
It took a little time but Diamond Stone started to establish himself as one of the USA's top low post scoring threats. He doesn't have the athleticism of Giles, Rabb or Daniel Giddens, but he does have the ability to score over defenders in the low posts.
Daniel Giddens has played with great energy and been one of the top rebounders and shot blockers. He has put himself in a position to be one of the first post options off the bench for the USA.
2016 point guard Payton Pritchard has had a good showing and has put himself strongly in contention to make the team because of his ball control and ability to make the open shot.
A high energy player at a long 6-9, Bryant impacts the game with his length and effort. He appears to still be growing into his body, and the future bodes well for him.
Nearby Syracuse has offered and is recruiting him the hardest. Arizona, Villanova and West Virginia have also offered.
At 6-6, 205 pounds Williams is a smooth operating small forward with a broad skill base.
His home state school Illinois is pursuing him the hardest with Providence right behind. Florida, SMU and DePaul have also offered. Interest is coming in from Tennessee and Michigan State.
A bruising below the rim big man at 6-9, 245-pounds, Ellenson also has a dangerous outside shot.
He named offers from home state school Wisconsin and also Creighton and said that those are basically the two schools that are pursuing him.