Boo Williams (VA) failed to qualify for Peach Jam last season, struggling to find consistency alongside sophomore super-scorer Cam Thomas. They will look to make last season a distant memory in 2019, as Thomas is set to return alongside an influx of elite talent. Boo Williams will enter the circuit with five 5-star recruits, two more than the next closest team and the most in modern-day EYBL history. Despite being supremely talented, Boo will roster five underclassmen, and it's never easy to win with a young roster in the EYBL. That being said, almost every other teams would switch rosters with Boo if they could. Boo will have a Peach Jam Championship on their minds, and they have all of the necessary pieces to pull it off..
Boo Williams junior Cam Thomas (247 2020 No. 25)
When four 5-star recruits live on the same roster, one could assume that the 'star' duties would be divided equally. This isn't the case for Boo Williams. Even though they feature a handful of elite players, Thomas is clearly the go-to stud, and you can tank it to the bank that he will finish in the top five of EYBL scoring. Why so confident, you ask? Easy, just look at the numbers. Thomas, equally adept at shooting from the perimeter as he is getting to the line, lit up the EYBL as a sophomore. In 16 games, the 6-foot-3 junior averaged 19.8 points, 2.8 rebounds, and 2.3 assists while shooting 90 percent from the line on 91 attempts. Thomas parlayed that success into a stellar junior campaign at powerhouse Oak Hill Academy (VA). Starring alongside 2019 top-ranked guard Cole Anthony, Thomas averaged 26.4 points, 3.9 assists, and 2.0 steals per game in 36 games for Oak Hill. Thomas doesn't lack confidence on the offensive end, and nor should he. With the weapons at his disposal in 2019, Thomas has a chance to put up some special numbers, and more importantly, he has a chance to help Boo Williams win a lot of games.
While he's more than capable of running an offense, Thomas is a shooting guard by trade, and 5-star sophomore Zion Harmon will be tasked with table-setting for his teammates. Harmon, a 3-year EYBL veteran, looked confident and comfortable at the end of the high school season for Bella Vista Prep. He ended the season by putting up 23 points, 9 rebounds, and 6 assists, earning the game's Most Valuable Player honors in 96-94 Grind Session National Championship. Harmon ran with Boo Williams two years ago, and the 5-foot-10 point guard is back where he played the best basketball of his career.
Junior guard Amir Nesbitt returns from Boo's 2018 E16 team, and he'll be a great complement to Thomas and Harmon. Nesbitt's motor never stops going, and scouts and college coaches alike will take notice of his willingness to compete and play defense. Nesbitt is good in transition and attacks the basket with ferocity, two traits that he'll look to refine before he heads to prep power Massanutten Military Academy in the fall. Junior guard Jordan Battle joins the fold, and the 6-foot-2 guard is tough-as-nails and will provide a major spark off the bench. Battle did everything for Norfolk Collegiate (VA) in 2018-19, averaging 28.4 points, 5.6 assists, 9.4 rebounds, and 3.9 steals in 35 games. Sophomore Allen Strothers is playing up for a reason - he can play. The 2nd-Team All-State selection is the son of former NBA player Lamont Strothers, and it appears he has some of his dad's talent. He played up on Boo's 16s a year ago, so don't be surprised if he carves out a spot for himself in the primary rotation.
Boo Williams sophomore Zion Harmon (247 2021 No. 27)
This frontcourt is absolutely stacked. The two remaining 5-star recruits lead the way, as Aminu Mohammed and JT Thor are set for standout sophomore circuit campaigns. Mohammed (247 No. 8) and Thor (247 No. 9) are directly next to each other in the 2021 class rankings by 247 Sports, and both of them provide production to match their lofty national status. Mohammed is a 6-foot-5 swingman that does everything well, and he absolutely dominated the competition in Missouri this high school season after moving from Washington, DC. Mohammed put up video-game numbers for Greenwood Lab (MO), averaging 34.2 points, 17.5 rebounds, 2.9 steals, and 2.3 assists per game en route to the school's first state tournament since the early 1940s. Mohammed play's with a mean streak, and his strength and physicality will allow him to contribute at a high level in the EYBL.
At 6-foot-8, Thor is a bit taller than Mohammed, and he brings a few different assets to the table. Thor has a long, athletic build and is capable of stretching the floor with his jump shot. Thor runs like a deer in transition, and his ability to consistently rim-run will result in a lot of easy buckets for the talented sophomore. Thor is capable of guarding the two-through-five positions, and his ability to defend the pick-and-roll will be a valuable asset on defense. Thor enjoyed an impressive sophomore year at prep high school power Huntington Prep, and he'll play a very similar role in Boo Williams' rotation.
The fun doesn't stop there for Boo, who also added 7-foot-1 junior Mark Williams in the offseason. Williams does most of his work in the paint, and he will be responsible for dominating that space on both ends of the floor. Williams is a difference-maker at the rim, and he did a terrific job of staying out of foul trouble in high school with Norfolk Academy (VA). Williams averaged 19.7 points, 11.2 rebounds, and 3.7 blocks in 2018-19, and he will be a threat for a double-double whenever he's on the floor.
Junior Jahvon John is a developing swingman with good size. The 6-foot-7 makes for a perfect motor guy that will stand out with his ability to run the floor. The same can be said for 6-foot-6 junior Clarence Rupert. Named the VHSL 5A State Player Of The Year, Rupert averaged 17 points, 11 rebounds, and two rebounds to help Maury (VA) win their first state title in school history. Junior Tyson Brown (6-foot-9) and sophomore Touba Traoré (6-foot-10) are the final two options in the frontcourt. Both prospects are active in the paint and will be responsible for rebounding and defending at a high level.
Boo Williams will start four 5-star recruits and one 4-star recruit. While three of those players are underclassmen, they all have more than enough tools in their toolbox to make a significant impact on the 17U EYBL. Thomas is going to be a scoring machine, while Mohammed, Thor, Harmon, and Williams should thrive in their respective roles. Boo will enter the season as a top ten contender, and a run at the Peach Jam Championship is a distinct possibility for this group of young basketball players.