Fenwick senior point guard Mike Smith put together one of the season's most important outings by scoring 38 points against Simeon earlier this week.
The performance was special not only because Smith put the Friars on his back for a key win, but also because the unsigned senior made a statement to Division I coaches.
Smith is one of a handful of unsigned Division I prospects in the area, a list which includes players on many of the best teams in the area. A good student, high-academic schools have been courting Smith but performances like the one against Simeon have put coaches on notice.
Here's a list of four more local Division I prospects to keep tabs on the next couple of weeks.
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Nick Rakocevic, St. Joseph: Already the owner of a state title, now Rakocevic can stake the claim as the best unsigned player on the state. At 6-foot-10 with a developing skill level, Rakocevic has plenty of high-major programs showing interest this winter as he's been a double-double machine.
Zion Morgan, Kenwood: The former Valparaiso commit is back on the board and he remains one of the best scoring guards in the city. A confident and creative driver, Morgan can finish around the basket as well as anyone in the area and his scoring outbursts have made him attractive to college coaches.
Josh Thomas, Simeon: While Zach Norvell gets a lot of the attention at Simeon, running mate Josh Thomas is also putting together a good season and he's also drawn attention from Division I coaches. A power driver who can also create for others, Thomas is at his best in the open floor but can also create for his teammates. A deep state tournament run for Simeon would only help Thomas' recruitment that much more
Jamal Burton, Morgan Park: When you play with talented guards like Charlie Moore and Jarrin Randall, it's easy to get lost in the shuffle, but college coaches shouldn't sleep on Burton. An explosive athlete who is happy to play the glue guy role and do the little things, Burton has also shown he can score a bit on his own. Also a dynamic defender, Burton should have plenty of spotlight games before the season is over.