The Memphis Elite squad has been facing a major challenge in recent years when the bulk of the team was playing up. This year, Memphis Elite will finally be able to reap the rewards of that strategy.
“This should be one of the strongest teams we’ve ever put on the court for Memphis Elite,” said Coach Eric Daniels. “This year, we are finally going to be one of the older teams. We have a lot of talented juniors on this team, and they have always played up.”
Those talented veterans will get an early test this spring at the 2015 Deep South Classic, which will be played in Raleigh, NC on April 24-26. The Deep South Classic, which annually features the nation’s top travel programs, will once again have the entire tournament in one facility — the tremendous Raleigh Convention Center.
Memphis Elite will be paced by a trio of outstanding 2016 prospects. Brandi Beasley (5-8, PG) is rated as the No. 112 recruit in the class by the All Star Girls Report, while Kayla Williams (6-1, WF) is at No. 149 and Taylor Barnes (5-8, G) is at No. 214.
“Brandi is a scoring point guard who already has several scholarship offers,” Daniels said. “She is a penetrator who knows how to get to the rack, and she also has a nice pull-up jump shot. Kayla is a wiry, long slasher with a very nice three-point shot. She also plays good defense with her length. Taylor is an energizer type who goes hard all the time. She has a good jump shot, and she is a physical player who loves to draw contact.”
“Beasley very quick and strong,” added ASGR analyst Bret McCormick. “She is explosive in the open floor, and she is an intelligent player who is a great passer. Kayla is a long athlete who has the ability to score inside, and she can step out to the arc. Plus, she is a player who always seems to be around the ball. Barnes is a strong, athletic combo guard. She handles the ball well and she has deep three range.”
The future of the Memphis Elite program will be carried by Jamirra Shutes (2018, 5-9, G) and Gabrielle Crawford (2018, 6-2, F).
“Jamirra is a very heady player and a very physical player who knows how to use her body,” Daniels said. “She has a good outside shot, and she gets to the rim. Gabrielle is a left-handed player who has a knack for scoring and rebounding around the rim. She has good quickness and athleticism, and she will do the dirty work for the team.”
McCormick identified Shutes as “a talented, athletic slasher.” He added that Crawford was ” a lefty athlete with a great motor and a blue collar approach.”