After competing in the National Basketball Players Association’s Top 100 Camp in Orlando last week, Northwood rising senior Drake Powell is back in action this week at the Peach Jam tournament in North Augusta, S.C.
The Peach Jam, put on by the Nike Elite Youth Basketball League (EYBL), is the premier tournament in the nation for high school players. The tournament started Monday and runs through July 9.
According to MaxPreps, the Peach Jam will host 65 of the top 100 prospects in the class of 2023 and 50 of the top 75 prospects in the class of 2024, according to 247Sports’ rankings. Powell ranks No. 9 overall by 247Sports in the class of 2024 and ranks No. 15 in 247Sports’ composite rankings, which uses an average of several different sites’ rankings.
The Peach Jam will be another chance for Powell to showcase his skills on a national stage. The 6-foot-6 forward impressed onlookers at the Top 100 camp last week, and while his team didn’t win the tournament, he did enough to show why his stock has risen so precipitously over the past several months.
Travis Branham of 247Sports wrote late last week that Powell was aggressive on offense on top of displaying his trademark lockdown defense on the other side of the court. At one point in the showcase, he had knocked down 8-of-15 (53.3%) of his shots from 3-point range.
“(Powell) probably isn’t done rising in the rankings just yet … ,” Branham said. “He may not always stuff a stat sheet, but he does a lot more that doesn’t show up in a box score to impact winning.”
Powell will play in the Peach Jam as part of Team CP3, which will compete in Group A along with Team Final, NH Lightning, Meanstreets, JL3 and UPLAY. Among the other top players competing in the group are Team Final guard Ahmad Nowell (No. 33 overall in 2024), NH Lightning forward Badara Diakite (No. 36 in 2025) and NH Lightning forward Jahki Howard (No. 62 in 2024).
Team Final and the NH Lightning went a combined 29-5 over the first four sessions of the EYBL season. Team CP3 lost to NH Lightning, 85-72, back on April 29 and lost to Team Final, 78-59, back on May 29.
Powell’s highest-rated teammate on Team CP3 is North Mecklenburg’s Isaiah Evans — a 6-foot-6 small forward ranked No. 19 overall in the Class of 2024 by 247Sports’ composite rankings. Evans is committed to Duke and is the top-ranked player the Blue Devils have signed in his class.
Team CP3 opened Peach Jam play Monday against JL3 before playing UPLAY on July 4 and Team Final on Wednesday. The team plays the NH Lightning on Thursday and closes pool play against Meanstreets on Friday.
This is Powell’s second season competing at the Peach Jam. He also did in 2022 as part of Team CP3’s 16U team.
Last year’s Peach Jam champion, Mokan Elite, is playing in Group D. This year’s team features 6-foot-9 center James Brown, a UNC commit like Powell and the No. 59 player in the Class of 2024.
Mokan Elite finished 10-7 over the first four sessions of EYBL play this season, while Team CP3 was one game behind them at 9-8 overall. Team CP3 lost its only game with Mokan this season, 74-58, back on May 14.