Already one of the most talented grassroots teams in the country throughout the spring, Team Penny gained the unfair advantage of adding star shooting guard John Petty in Atlanta. With a deep rotation that features ridiculous talent at every position, this squad appears primed for a deep run in North Augusta.
When you stand as the only undefeated team in the league and you drop two games during the final weekend, it would be hard not to fall from the lofty perch of being #1 all year long. However, that doesn’t mean this Pulley squad is any less intimidating and they should absolutely be considered a favorite to win it all after missing out on the fun last summer.
With six weeks to return to full health and an unbelievable draw in pool play, one could argue that PSA should be even higher on this list. They will be getting a massive boost from big man and ESPN No. 4 Mo Bamba, where he will join a rotation that only grew stronger in his absence. This team is primed to tear through pool play and into the final eight.
Another team that could easily be ranked at the top, Team CP3 is riding a 12-game winning streak to close out the regular season and stand as the hottest grassroots program in the nation right now. Last season’s Peach Jam MVP, Wendell Carter Jr., will lead this ever-improving rotation into North Augusta with their sights set high but focus locked on the first game of pool play.
After drawing the same pool as Howard Pulley, MOKAN will need to be at their absolute best to solidify a spot in the final eight. Lucky for them they happen to have to of the best players on the entire circuit in the same lineup in Michael Porter Jr. and Trae Young. Following an early exit in pool play last season, these two stars are hungry for revenge and lead an experienced lineup into Peach Jam.
Last year, this program advanced all the way to the Peach Jam final before faltering against the Georgia Stars in a blowout loss. Star guard Jordan Goodwin has not forgotten the bitter taste that came with coming up one half short of winning it all. A strong supporting cast that is arguably deeper than last year’s team will look to make some major noise as they go for that elusive final victory.
Doubters have pointed to the fact that the Playaz lack a true post presence since the opening tip in NYC, and yet here they are back in Peach Jam as one of the best teams on the circuit. On the strength of their four-guard rotation that can compete with any backcourt in the field, this team has won with strong perimeter play and an up-tempo style. Playaz knows who they are and what works for them, and that alone will make them a strong contender in North Augusta.
With stars Tony Bradley and Jonathan Isaac, this program advanced all the way to the semifinals at last year’s Peach Jam and took Team CP3 to the wire in a tough overtime loss. However, this year’s version of E1T1 is deeper and better than 2015, and after showing out as one of the best team’s in Hampton they continued their strong play in Atlanta. Led by stud wing Kevin Knox, there’s no reason to believe this team can’t advance at least as far as last year.
This team has come a long way since the first session in NYC, where questions surrounded the rotation and how they would replace the production of 3-year EYBL vet VJ King. The star tandem of Chris Lykes and DJ Harvey has answered those questions in a big way, and they have plenty of help as they will try to repeat last year’s performance, where they were one possession from advancing to the Peach Jam final. Lykes, Harvey, and company have tons of Peach Jam experience and you cannot overestimate that factor.
With arguably the best big man combo in EYBL and grassroots history with ESPN No. 1 and No. 6 prospects Deandre Ayton and Brandon McCoy, respectively, falling in at number 10 on this list could be viewed as an insult to anyone that has watched this squad play. However, in a league this competitive, it’s all relative especially heading into Peach Jam, in which the Supreme have little experience but enough talent to win it all. As long as their two studs stay healthy, this team is a dark horse to win the whole thing.