The NBAPA Top 100 Camp rolled through Charlottesville again this June and once again I had the opportunity to get an up-close look at some of the nation’s elite high school basketball players. As always, I took down a ton of notes on players from point guard to center in an effort to familiarize myself and Sabre EDGE subscribers with some of the players that Virginia may be eyeing on the recruiting trail.
Before diving in, a couple of housekeeping items for perspective: I try not to read many articles or evaluations of any of these prospects prior to the NBAPA event. Typically, I have a vague idea at best as to who has what rankings or how many stars dot the landscape. I try to take notes from a coaches’ perspective so you’ll see things like defensive stance, positioning, and the like in the notes.
I also try to keep Virginia’s system in mind when watching the players so Tony Bennett’s style was easier to identify after his first season in Charlottesville. For example, a guard that can provide ball pressure with containment skills defensively is someone that would fit UVa’s style on that end of the floor. A player that can hit open jumpers after setting a screen is someone that could fit in offensively. And so on.
So on to some of the player observations …
Naadir Tharpe , 5’11”, 170 pounds, guard, Worcester MA, 2011: Low center of gravity, athletic build. Point guard. Moves well and does a nice job heating up the ball on defense. Moves his feet well laterally. Has good touch on his shot. Has pull-up jumper in the arsenal for transition shot. Properly threw a left-handed entry pass to the low side of the left block. Showed very good passing ability in transition and in the halfcourt sets.
Marcus Paige , 6’1″, 160 pounds, guard, Marion IA, 2012: Long-armed combo guard that can handle the point. Shows quick bursts of speed. Stays active on defense, though
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