We’re taking an early look at some promising 2023 guards that you will be hearing more from over the next couple of years.
Cam Christie (6-3 PG, Rolling Meadows)
Christie is already looking like one of the best 2023 guards in the state, starting for Rolling Meadows and averaging 11 points and four assists in the process. He has grown since the season ended, standing around 6-foot-3 right now. The composure and precision he has separates him from his peers. Christie knows how to handle pressure with a good change of pace and creativity off the dribble. With plus length at the lead guard spot, Christie is a solid ball-mover that looks to make the right play, whether that be a shot for himself or his teammates. His jump shot is smooth from the outside, consistently coming out with good rotation and high arc. As he gets stronger, he will be able to capitalize on more contact finishes. Over the last few weeks, Michigan State and Ohio State have offered.
Darrin Ames (6-0 PG, Morgan Park)
Ames is an advanced shot creator that creates space with his ball handling ability. He will stop on a dime and step back into his jump shot or use that shiftiness to shake defenders for a direct drive. His frame is going to fill out to allow him to overpower defenders with his explosiveness getting to the rim. Playing up on a loaded Morgan Park team, Ames gained valuable experience that will carry over into what a likely breakout sophomore campaign. Ames is a player that is ready for the big moments. Illinois has already offered the 6-foot point guard.
Jeremy Fears Jr. (6-1 PG, Joliet West)
College coaches have been monitoring Fears early and often. He has the toughness and quickness that you look for in a point guard at the next level. Fears wants to impact every aspect of the game, harassing ball-handlers defensively, hitting pull-ups off crossover moves, and drawing help before dishing the ball to his teammates. With blinding speed in the open floor, the Joliet West guard puts a ton of pressure on the defense. He could force up shots, but chooses to orchestrate the offense and choose his spots to attack. The offers have started to roll in, with Nebraska, Iowa State, and DePaul among the teams that are currently pursuing Fears.
Xavier Sulaiman (6-2 SG, Marist)
Sulaiman didn’t play a ton of minutes at the varsity level, but there is a lot to like about his long term potential. He is a bouncy, 6-foot-2 guard that is a dangerous fast break scorer with his length and athleticism. He projects as a big-time defensive player that plays the passing lanes and can guard multiple positions. The length on the defensive end along with his quickness laterally and vertically to contest shots allow him terrorize offenses. Sulaiman is a good slasher that has a compact shooting form that will improve. You will hear more about him as a sophomore.
Asa Thomas (6-5 SG, Lake Forest)
Thomas fits the bill of a big, skilled guard. At 6-foot-5, the lanky scorer put on a shooting clinic for Lake Forest. He averaged 12 points a game and regularly pulled up from 25 feet. For a freshman, he already shot the ball at a college level, forcing defenses to make adjustments to run him off the (volleyball) line. The ability to stretch the floor allows Thomas to use his size to get to the rim where he has good touch. If you put smaller guards on him, Thomas has no problem posting up on the blocks. He is very thin, so playing against physicality can be an issue. But he has plenty of time to improve in that area.