The Basketball Coaches Association of Tennessee (BCAT) tournament (June 18-June 20) gave players from more than 70 high schools across Tennessee a showcase for their skills. (Courtesy photo)

by Liaudwin Seaberry Jr. —

Throughout the summer, high basketball players across Memphis participate in several tournaments to showcase their skills to college coaches around the nation.

The Basketball Coaches Association of Tennessee (BCAT) tournament June 18-June 20 gave players from more than 70 high schools across Tennessee a platform to show off their skills to their high school head coaches and prove to scouts that they can compete at college level.

The event occurred at several gymnasiums across the Bluff City.

More than 70 college scouts from various schools across the city and the nation lined up to observe the competition.

College coaches from universities such as the University of Memphis, Florida State, Texas flocked to Memphis to potentially find the hidden gems needed for their programs.

Veteran high school basketball reporter Leon Taylor noted the significance of the tournaments.

Taylor said several players caught his attention. In addition, he said the tournament provided exposure to players, who missed out on a high school basketball season because of COVID-19.

“There were a lot of big-time schools at the BCAT tournament who wanted to see the best of the best demonstrate their skills, “Taylor said. “A lot of the players from around the area did not participate in a regular season last year, but they came ready to play during the tournament.”

The tournament provided fans with the opportunity to witness some of the state’s best basketball players, as many players earned scholarships throughout the duration of the tournament.

Chandler Jackson, viewed by many as the best guard in the Memphis area, already possessed scholarship offers from multiple schools, including Florida State, Texas and Memphis. Jackson was one of the players who caught Taylor’s eye.

In addition, Taylor also praised a duo from Memphis University School ⸺ big man R’Chaun King and point guard Curtis Givens. Both players already possessed multiple Division 1 scholarships offers, but their ability to put the team before themselves stood out to Taylor, especially since the players are only rising sophomores.

“Givens and King have the ability to be one of the best combinations in the city, and their ability to raise their games in front of college scouts around the nation will pay off even more in the future for them,” Taylor said.

The players felt the tense atmosphere of trying to perform in front of observant college scouts.

Arlington junior forward Anthony Medlock understood the stage he and his team were on, and felt that it pushed and motivated them to keep grinding on the court, even during the midst of fatigue.

“It was exciting that we were able to perform in front of college coaches and I think it got us to play even harder,” Medlock said.