The 16U division will be unpredictable, with no clear favourite, but the top four are considered championship contending teams.
The rest of the field can definitely take down any of the top seeds on any given game. The talent is present, the coaching is respectable and the stakes are the highest they’ve ever been. At this point, it will come down to who is better prepared. #GameSpeaks
16U CNIT Rankings
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Southern Ontario Selects
However, the Southern Ontario Selects (SOS) have emerged as the #1 seed, following a strong spring and early summer, which includes a CYBL championship and Buffalo Summer Classic title . SOS is lead by 2018 6’9 forward Matthew Grace, and 6’5 guard Aleks Simeunovic.
We are not afraid of anyone. There are some better athletes in our age group but not any better teams. – SOS Head Coach Kelly Grace
Intriguing team, started the spring off slow, but have developed chemistry, while building a solid resume including key victories over notable programs in Canada Elite and Northern Kings. This squad is LOADED with NCAA talent from top to bottom, and is the most physically impressive group in the 16U division! Michael Okafor, Kajon Gordon-Stephens, Shamar Samuels-Givance and Dalano Banton.
If Can Amera is executing at a high clip at CNIT, a national title is not far away.
Red Rush represents what Quebec basketball is all about–grit, speed, athleticism and a relentless approach on the defensive end. RR is lead by 2018’s Shevon Noel, Nicolas Dutervil and Xhelabin Neza.
Rush is fresh off a big victory over the Quebec provincial by 20, and have won five of last six, picking up steam going into CNIT.
A.J Lawson is the marquee prospect on this roster, despite being the youngest on the team! The 2019 talent is emerging as one of the class’ best young prospects.
However, you would be mistaken if you thought that was all the Gators have in their den. 2018 Chad Vincent and Tristan Lindo complete Gators Elite big three. Have won the Chicago Classic, the Etobicoke Invitational and CNIT gold is on their minds.
GRC has the nucleus to make a deep run at CNIT, with lead guard Miykah McIntosh bringing toughness and leadership, Shakur Daniel making plays from everyone on the floor, and Matthew Davies banging down low.
Grassroots Canada will need others to step up throughout the tournament to take this squad over the hump.
Hoops Canada (Brampton, ON)
Kahleel Ellis, Jimmy Rich, Rahsaan Chambers lead Hoops Canada. Ellis is the younger brother of Duquesne commit Isiaha Mike, but brings a different type of game.
Ellis is a crafty, skiled guard, while Rich and Chambers will mix it up in and out. Expect nothing less than a highly competitive group with a chip on their shoulder. Championship hunting…they just ball.
Hungry–the best way to describe this pack of wolves; Peoples basketball fights for every inch. Coach Kevin Jeffers ensures it.
We have some hidden gems in this group, with the biggest one being 2018 6’6 SF Deiondre Reid. Isaiah Cromwell-Wright and Evan Shadkami at the guard positions bring grit, leadership and production. Don’t sleep!
UPlay Canada (Hamilton, ON)
Carrying the load for UPlay are Blake Anderson, Babacar Fall, Philippe Naire and Nigel Carey-Kochan. This is a squad that can bang with the best of them as they possess the talent, coaching and mental approach to go the distance.
UPlay holds a key victory on their resume, defeating #2 seed Can Amera in the spring, and a runner up finish at the King James Classic in Ohio. Side bar–each player on this team holds an academic average of 80% or higher.
B-East Coast (Halifax, NS)
Don’t underestimate the B-East Coast. Will be lead by NPH Showcase MVP Keevan Veinot, a highly skilled, high academic 6’5 combo guard. Accompanying Veinot is 6’7 Ben Stevens, a developing forward that will benefit from experiencing this level of competition.
Coach Deon Wilson will have these boys fired up and prepared mentally to bang with the best.
This BTB group has a lot to prove given they’re a fairly new team. Have some up and comers in Patrick Emilin, Angelo Sarsonas and Pape Assane Diop from the East.
All under the radar, a basketball program with longevity and tradition. The Mississauga Monarchs are looking to make a stament at CNIT, lead by Dominic Bakuteka, Kenan Kababji, Hafith Moalin.
Brampton has historically been a region that has developed NBA, NCAA and CIS talent. What will this version of the Warriors bring to the table? #GameSpeaks
More info coming soon.
The following three teams–Durham Rangers, WC2P, and Rage are all playing up, getting their first taste of CNIT. These prospects will be the youngest in the tournament getting high level NCAA exposure with the big boys.
The Durham Rangers field intriguing prospects in Tyrese Drummond-Golden, Nicolas Fambegbe, Malaik Allen and Zachary Vidal Henry.
These teams must come into CNIT mentally prepared to deliver the first blow, younger or not.