Standouts: 49th Annual City Of Palms Classic

FORT MYERS, FLORIDA – I made the trip south to Lee County for the 49th annual City of Palms Classic on the campus of Florida Southwestern College.

From Monday, Dec. 19 to Wednesday, Dec. 21, there was a lot of really good basketball played.

Here is a look at my top standouts from the final three days of the tournament.

2023 6-0 G Rahmir Barno – Imhotep Charter

Saving his best for his last, Barno tallied 21 points on his way to being named tournament MVP in Imhotep’s championship win over Columbus on Wednesday night. The 2023 Pennsylvania averaged 15.5 PPG and proved time and time again that he is a baller. He’s a superb ballhandler and his shiftiness and confident jump shot really hurts defenses. Barno is an absolute steal for FGCU.

—2024 6-foot-1 guard Ahmad Nowell was steady all week long. His top performance came in the semifinal against Wheeler (Georgia) when he netted 21 points and used his strength and aggressive play to his advantage. 2023 6-foot-7 Kentucky commit Justin Edwards averaged just over 15.0 PPG and racked up a 25-point outing in a win over Isidore Newman (Louisiana) on Saturday night. He is long, strong at the point of attack and a versatile player on both ends of the floor.

2023 6-2 G Isaiah Collier – Wheeler

One of the toughest Georgia squads you’ll find, Isaiah Collier is the true leader at Wheeler. The USC commit averaged just north of 18.0 PPG for the fourth place finishers. He is a powerful finisher, a confident lead ballhandler and someone who makes everyone around him better. Collier is college ready.

—Joining Collier at USC next season is 2023 6-foot-9 Arrinten Page. His length and pure athleticism help him succeed inside on both ends of the floor. Page has a chippy style of play and he isn’t afraid to mix it up. His best night came on Monday in a win over Centennial (California) when he produced 22 points.

2025 6-9 F Cameron Boozer – Columbus

Columbus finished as the runner-up in the event. Cameron Boozer was awesome in three games as he averaged 16.0 PPG, 11.0 RPG and 4.0 APG. He handles the ball with ease, shoots it well and can attack offensively and block shots on the other end. The sky is the limit for the sophomore star.

—2025 6-foot-5 G Cayden Boozer had some bright moments in the first two games, leading the offense and finishing with his mid-range and lay-in package. 2024 6-foot-8 forward Malik Abdullahi is a leaper and a true x-factor inside. Once he develops a jumper, he will continue to surge.

2023 6-5 G DeShawn Harris-Smith – Paul VI

It is hard to ignore the game of DeShawn Harris-Smith. He recorded 19 points in the 3rd Place Game victory over Wheeler. The Virginia native is headed to Maryland next fall and certainly looks like a player who can come right in and contribute. He moves the ball well up and down the floor and his assertiveness downhill is a thing of beauty.

—Perhaps the most in-tuned 2026 prospect I’ve seen was Jordan Smith. The 6-foot-2 guard is built like an linebacker on the football field and he didn’t shy away from any pressure as a driver or passer. Smith was rarely phased. His upside is evident.

2023 6-6 G Stephon Castle – Newton

Stephon Castle was one of my favorite players I saw all week. The 6-foot-6 Georgia native simply can hurt you in so many ways. He averaged 15 PPG and had a crazy stat line of 15 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists and three steals in a tournament opening loss to Lake Highlands (Texas). A UConn commit, Castle can turn his aggressive play on and off. He’s a no non-sense player who just outworks you.

2023 6-6 G Kennard Davis – Vashon

Headed to Southern Illinois next fall, Kennard Davis looks like a diamond in the rough. He averaged nearly 17.0 PPG on the week and his 24 point night in a win over Winter Haven proved that he can get it done. He’s a hard nosed driver and a true scorer.

2024 6-2 G Johnuel “Boogie” Fland – Archbishop Stepinac

One of the most pure athletes you can find anywhere, Johnuel “Boogie” Fland shined for Archbishop Stepinac (New York). He averaged 18.0 PPG with his most impressive performance coming on opening night with 24 points (5-of-11 from 3-point land). Fland is a quick twitch ballhandler and a true gamer.

2025 6-2 G Tyler Jackson – Saint Frances

Tyler Jackson shot 47 percent from deep and averaged just north of 26 points per game in two games for Saint Frances (Maryland) this week. Against Patrick School, he was a true 3-point shooting artist and he buried deep looks in the second half time and time again.

2024 6-5 G Jaiden Glover – Patrick School

A high volume shooter, Jaiden Glover averaged 22.0 PPG in two games for Patrick School from New Jersey. He is a strong attacking player who can shoot it. His body is nearly college ready and at 6-foot-5, he has a very crafty game.

2024 6-4 G Bishop Boswell – Myers Park

One of the craftiest guards I saw all week, Bishop Boswell earned his stripes on the big stage. He averaged 16.0 PPG for Myers Park who was in town from Ohio. He has nice burst, good handles and really knows how to ellude defenders.

2024 6-6 G Karter Knox – Tampa Catholic

Averaging just over 21.0 PPG, Karter Knox was instrumental to Tampa Catholic’s battles this week. The Crusaders went 1-2 on the week but a lot can be learned from these hard matchups. Knox is a hustler on the boards and with his mix of size and length, he isn’t afraid to mix it up going to the bucket.

2023 6-8 F Dylan James – Winter Haven

Winter Haven scrapped its way to a 1-2 record on the week. 2023 6-foot-8 forward Dylan James averaged 15.5 PPG and 7.0 RPG while 2024 6-foot-6 guard Isaac Celsicar averagd 16.0 PPG and 2024 6-foot-5 guard Jamie Phillips Jr. averaged 15.0 PPG. The Blue Devils are one of the most balanced groups in Florida and will continue to make life tough for opponents.

2023 6-5 G John Gamble – Charlotte

The games didn’t go Charlotte’s way in the main bracket, but John Gamble surely carried the load averaging just under 23.0 PPG. He has a ton of pure speed in transition and handles the ball with purpose. His jumper is coming along and he knows he has a favorable matchup when getting to the cup.

Jake Perper has covered sports as a writer since 2010 and a basketball scout since 2015. He was the Southeast Scouting Director for the Prep Hoops Circuit and the lead scout for Prep Hoops’ Florida site for seven years. You can follow him on Twitter @thehoopvibe.