Keion Brooks Jr. doesn’t make the cut for USA Basketball’s U18 team

North Side junior Keion Brooks Jr. shoots a free throw last Friday at South Side. (Photo by Dan Vance of news-sentinel.com)

North Side senior Keion Brooks Jr. was not one of the 12 players selected Tuesday to compete for USA Basketball’s men’s under-18 team next week in Canada.

Brooks Jr. was one of 33 players with the chance to make the roster for the FIBA Americas U18 Championship that will be held from June 11-17 in St. Catherine’s, Ontario, Canada. He made it past the initial cut from 33 town to 18 on Sunday but was ultimately not one of the 12 chosen to compete for the team.

The team will be coached by Bill Self, the head coach of Kansas — to where Brooks holds a scholarship offer — and assisted by Danny Manning of Wake Forest and Anthony Grant of Dayton. Trayce Jackson-Davis from Center Grove, a Spiece Indy Heat teammate of Brooks’ and the North Side player’s top competition for the 2019 Indiana Mr. Basketball, did make the team of 12.

Jackson-Davis will be joined by Cole Anthony (Archbishop Molloy/Briarwood, N.Y.), Armando Bacot (Trinity Episcopal School/Richmond, Va.), Ayo Dosunmu (Morgan Park/Chicago, Ill.), Quentin Grimes (College Park High School/The Woodlands, Texas), Kamaka Hepa (Jefferson High School/Barrow, Alaska), Matthew Hurt (John Marshall High School/Rochester, Minn.), Josiah James (Porter-Gaud School/Charleston, S.C.), Tyrese Maxey (South Garland High School/Dallas, Texas), Jeremiah Robinson-Earl (Bishop Miege High School/Shawnee Mission, Kan.), Mark Watts Jr. (Old Redford Academy/Detroit, Mich.) and Coby White (Greenfield High School/Goldsboro, N.C.).

“It was tough getting it to 12,” Self said in a press release. “It was tough getting it from 33 to 18, but even with the 18 we’ve had a couple of extra days with and know how committed they all are to trying to make the team, knowing that different guys look better on different days and in different situations, it was tough getting to 12 because there are a lot of interchangeable parts.”

The team has won four straight gold medals in the FIBA Americas U18 Championship.

Brooks Jr. was recently named 21st in the USA Today Chosen 25, the news source’s official prospect rankings. Seven other Chosen 25 players made the Team USA roster. After a strong spring, Brooks has risen to 9th in the 247 Sports player rankings. He is also currently ranked 35th and a four-star recruit in the Rivals 150 and 30th as a five-star in the ESPN 60. 247 Sports’ composite rankings, which takes Rivals and ESPN into account, as well as their own rankings, has Brooks listed as 23rd in the country.

Due to still being in Colorado Springs after the tryouts, Brooks Jr. will not appear in Wednesday, June 6’s Indiana Senior/Junior All-Star game at New Albany High School.

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