Some of the most aesthetically satisfying basketball played at the 12th-annual Bank Hoops All-State Camp came courtesy of teammates Pierre Brooks Jr. and William Dunn. That’s significant because both have yet to play a high school game. Brooks, 6-3, is an eighth-grader at St. Clare Montefalco in Grosse Pointe, while Dunn, 6-6, is a freshman from Quincy.
Brooks’ talent was already apparent previously at the Bank Hoops Underclassman Camp. He was even better this time around thanks to improved shot selection, opportunities turned into assists — on the break, from the wing or out of the post. He and Dunn had terrific chemistry, whether running screen-and-rolls, give-and-goes, or simply feeding each other in the post. Brooks, son of the Detroit Douglass coach of the same name, has the instincts and court vision of a guard in the body of a forward. Though not yet in high school, he’s already won on one of the biggest stages there is for middle school players, as a member of the Family which finished second in the 13U AAU national tournament. As he matures and gets more explosion and lift from that big build, he’ll be even more dangerous around the rim. Size, skill, personality, there are more than a few similarities at the same age between Pierre and Denzel Valentine.
While this was Brooks’ third camp, it was our first time seeing William Dunn. Agile, active, an efficient finisher, moved well without the ball, put in tips above the rim, ran the court, on one play he took a rebound end-to-end for a dunk. All from a 6-6 kid in his first month of high school, is pretty rare. The upper body mechanics on his shot are fine and easily has three-point range, though sometimes his feet float too close together. Would still like to see Dunn be more of a physical presence on the glass and defending the rim. In age group play, at least, you’ll change all kinds of shots if you’re that height and just play with hands high. The early returns are just coming in, but Brooks and Dunn look like legit top 10 prospects for their classes.