While we are still waiting on high school basketball in my states throughout the country, prep schools have been locked and loaded on the hardwood for well over a month now. With no state associations governing them, many prep schools are able to start practicing the day their players step foot on campus, giving them a drastic advantage for not just the short term, but for the next level as well.
Enter the EIBC.
Founded by BFL Prep head coach Barry Jones, the EIBC provides a platform that offers not just convenience, but elite competition for schools throughout the nation. Rather than traveling across the country to play just one of two games, the EIBC offers programs the opportunity to play four games in four days each month at one central location throughout the country. Additionally, it makes things far easier for players to get exposure from both college coaches and scouts since there are more than a dozen legit prep schools all under one roof. The first session was hosted by Colorado Prep just outside of Denver, and did not disappoint in terms of talent.
Jason Asemota, 6’8, SF/PF, Hillcrest Prep (AZ), 2024
The most dominant scorer of the EIBC Session I was undoubtedly Jason Asemota of Hillcrest Prep. Standing a legit 6-foot-8, the consensus top-25 scorer showed that he’s the prototype for a new age forward in today’s game. The Boston native is a deadly 3-point shooter with his feet set (hit seven 3PT in one half), has shown promise defending multiple positions on the floor, and seemingly finds a way to hang nearly 30 points on the board every time he touches the floor. Headed to Baylor next year, Asemota has the size and talent to be an immediate impact player from the second he touches down in Waco.
JJ Mandaquit, 6’1, PG, Utah Prep (UT), 2025
Some guys play checkers whereas others play chess, and JJ Mandaquit is definitely a chess player. The headiest guard we saw at the EIBC, Mandaquit saw the game one pass ahead, utilized a change of speed to throw defenses off constantly, and made unique finishes off the wrong leg throughout the weekend. The USA Basketball lead guard is the next Filipino-American product to make a splash and will have his choice of virtually any school in the country.
Jovan Milicevic, 6’9, PF/C, Canyon International Academy (AZ), 2024
One of my favorite players to watch throughout the weekend was Jovan Milicevic, a Canadian big who produces at an absurd rate. Certainly not the most athletic player in the EIBC, Jovan offers a feathery touch to the 3-point line, uses his sturdy body to create separation for his scoring moves on the block, and is a great positional rebounder. Toss in the fact that he can be used as a playmaking post player and you see why New Mexico locked up the Canadian big man early in the signing period.
Christian Gilliland, 6’2, PG/SG, Albuquerque Prep (NM), 2025
A player who I hadn’t seen prior to the event, Christian Gilliland was the most athletic guard that the EIBC had to offer. The Memphis native is a strong guard who can finish over the top of the defense with either hand, is an explosive slasher, and proved to be a really nice on ball defender. The Gateway Basketball Club combo guard will undoubtedly be one of the biggest stock risers that the EIBC has to offer.
Paul Osaruyi, 6’9, PF, Canyon International Academy (AZ), 2027
While he didn’t put up huge numbers throughout the weekend, Paul Osaruyi left no doubt that he’s one of the nation’s elite players in the class of 2027. Blessed with an outstanding frame, the Canadian big man showed promising range as a 3-point shooter and changed the game on both ends of the floor with his freakish athleticism. Having made a huge impact for the Canadian U-16 team, Osaruyi has firmly established himself in the conversation for the top player in the class of 2027.
Cole Bekkering, 6’5, SG, Edge Prep (CAN), 2025
As far as straight snipers are concerned, Cole Bekkering firmly established himself as one of the premier shooters in the class of 2025 at the EIBC. He can shoot it on the move going either way, has a quick release, and has no shortage of confidence shooting the ball from NBA range. Bekkering has also made a huge impact in the NorthPoleHoops National Prep Association in Canada, showing his impact on both sides of the border.
Josiah Sanders, 6’4, PG/SG, Colorado Prep (CO), 2025
One of the more physical guards in the EIBC, Josiah Sanders used his strong frame to consistently finish through contact all weekend long for Colorado Prep. The lefty owns a great change of pace, is a sneaky athlete, and utilizes his strength to defend a number of positions on the defensive end. Already owning an offer from Northern Colorado, their staff was in attendance to watch Sanders again throughout the weekend.