South Carolina Top 80 Evaluations
Coach: Josh Staley
#5: 5’9 ’22 Dylan Williams (Columbia, SC)
Starting things off, we look at a player that provided his team with an excellent two-way presence, Dylan Williams. He’s a point guard prospect with nice IQ and leadership qualities. Offensively, Williams did a great job of operating the team without forcing the issue; he was able to apply pressure as a penetrator and knocked down shots on all levels throughout the day. He plays with a team-first approach and moves the ball quite well in transition. Williams is a scrappy defender that can force turnovers through intercepting passing lanes. Next in his development process is simply continuing to grow and add strength, as it’ll make him a more complete all-around player. Coach Staley on Williams: “Dylan is a great floor general with next-level speed and a positive attitude. He is a hard-nosed defender, especially when guarding the ball. Dylan plays with a high IQ.” Williams is just entering his freshman season and will be a prospect worth monitoring over the next few years.
#21: 5’11 ’21 James Lovorn III (Anderson, SC)
Next, we look at a player with terrific long-term potential and a blossoming skillset, James Lovorn III. He’s a point guard prospect with quality playmaking ability and an unselfish approach to the game. Lovorn understands how to survey the floor, enter the paint, and make plays around the basket. He shot the ball quite well from all three levels throughout camp and finished a nice amount of his chances at the rim. Lovorn is a strong spot-up option, which allows him to slide off-ball with relative ease and apply continuous pressure as a scorer. Next in his development process is working on his quickness, as it’ll improve his overall defensive presence. Coach Staley on Lovorn: “James is a solid guard with good shooting range. He has solid penetration and nice touch on his jumper. He was a good teammate and unselfish throughout camp.” Lovorn enjoyed an excellent showing at SC Top 80 and will be one to keep an eye on over the coming years. Expect the point guard to have a big-time sophomore season, as he possesses all the necessary tools for a breakout year.
#39:6’1 ’19 Jadakiss Wright (Beech Island, SC)
Moving onto a player that brought a fairly well-rounded approach to both sides of the ball, Jadakiss Wright. He’s a fairly athletic guard prospect with a wiry frame and toughness. Offensively, Wright knows how to get downhill and attack the rim pretty regularly while also showing the tendency to pull-up from midrange whenever possible. He forced turnovers on defense and passed the ball well in transition throughout the day. Wright understands how to make his presence felt on both ends of the floor and did a nice job of playing within the team concept at camp. Next in his development process is working on his overall shooting consistency from beyond the arc, as it would make him a more dangerous offensive threat. Coach Staley on Wright: “Jadakiss is a strong-framed guard with the ability to get to the rim. He had a good attitude and unselfish approach throughout camp. With consistent shooting touch, Jadakiss will be a force.” Wright worked hard on both sides of the ball and will be an unsigned senior to monitor during the upcoming year, as his recruitment could pick up with continued improvement.
#49: 6’1 ’21 Darian Bookman (Newberry, SC)
Continuing onto a player that is just beginning to unlock the potential of his two-way abilities, Darian Bookman. He’s a long-bodied guard that does a nice job of playing within his role on both ends of the floor. Offensively, Bookman scores most of his points through cutting and spotting-up around the perimeter. He knocked down open looks in transition and moved the ball whenever possible. Bookman utilizes his length well to defend and rebound; he plays really hard and tries to outwork his opponent whenever possible. Next in his development process is continuing to work on refining his overall skillset and improving his ball-handling ability, as it would make him a more complete player. Coach Staley on Bookman: “Darian is a solid overall player. Once he develops and grows, he will be a strong force on both ends of the floor. Right now, he displays solid shooting touch and uses his long arms on defense.” Bookman will be one to watch grow over the next few years and he should be expected to contribute during his upcoming sophomore season.
#55:6’2 ’19 Maison Hall (Aiken, SC)
Next, we look at a player that showcased an impressive motor throughout his time at camp, Maison Hall. He’s a strong, athletic guard prospect that knows how to wreak constant havoc against a variety of opponents. Hall does a great job of getting by defenders and finishing strong at the rim; he displayed a quality handle and nice vision whenever penetrating. He has a solid feel for the game and looked to make hustle plays at all times. His impact as a defender was clear, as he contained his assignment with ease and forced turnovers throughout the day. Next in his development process is continuing working on his consistency as a shooter, as it would make him really difficult for opponents to stop on the offensive end. Coach Staley on Hall: “Maison is a tough on-ball defender with great court vision. He plays hard on both sides of the floor. Maison has a great knack for seeing the ball and intercepting passes on defense.” Hall could be poised for a big senior season, where he should prove that he belongs at the collegiate level.
#66: 6’3 ’20 Demetric Hardin Jr. (Richburg, SC)
Moving onto a player that knows how to affect the game with nice consistency on both ends of the floor, Demetric Hardin Jr. He’s a wing prospect with ball-handling ability and an unselfish, team-first approach to the game. Offensively, Hardin scores efficiently when attacking the rim and showed that he can knock down open shots from midrange and beyond the arc. He provides great energy on defense and does a solid job of disrupting action against opposing ball-handlers. Next in his development process is continuing to work on his consistency from beyond the arc, as it would make him even more lethal on the offensive end of the floor. Coach Staley on Hardin: “Demetric did a little bit of everything today. He shot the ball well and finished nicely around the rim. Demetric plays hard and forced a few turnovers on the day. He knows how to make an impact without forcing the action.” Hardin will be one to monitor over the next two seasons, as he could enjoy a strong end to his high school career, especially if he brings the same mentality that he displayed at camp.
#72: 6’3 ’21 Korey Richardson (Columbia, SC)
Continuing onto a player that has become increasingly likely to emerge as a nationally regarded prospect, Korey Richardson. He’s a combo-guard with an incredibly well-rounded skillset and the ability to dominate at early stages in his development. Offensively, Richardson is capable of doing whatever he desires and does an excellent job of mixing up his approach from one possession to the next. He can create for himself and others with ease or slide off-ball and knock down shots off the catch. Richardson is extremely efficient with his touches and displays great polish as a playmaker. He’s already unstoppable in transition and showcases an exceptionally mature feel for the game. Richardson makes a ton of plays defensively through his quickness and firm understanding of positioning. The combination of his IQ, motor, and skill is a large part of what makes him such a special prospect. Next in his development process is continuing to work on his consistency from three-point territory, as a knockdown stroke from distance would make him virtually unstoppable. Coach Staley on Richardson: “Korey is a physical specimen with great ball skills and IQ. He has excellent court vision and finishing ability. He was a good teammate and brought an excellent motor to the team.” Richardson is going to be a big-time prospect if he continues to work and we’ll be watching his progression closely over the next three years.
#94: 6’5 ’19 Omar Croskey (Sumter, SC)
Next, we look at a player that is simply wired to score the ball, regardless of basketball setting, Omar Croskey. He’s a long, wiry forward prospect with nice IQ and overall feel for the game. Offensively, Croskey displays an innate scoring sense and can generate a shot against any type of opponent. He scores effectively from all three levels and understands how to properly move without the ball to open up additional opportunities from beyond the arc. Croskey utilizes his length extremely well on defense to cause turnovers and disrupt opposing forwards. He pushes the break on rebounds whenever possible and forces opponents to always account for him in transition. Next in his development process is working to improve his overall defensive presence, as it would make him a more complete threat. Coach Staley on Croskey: “Omar provides nice shooting from the power forward position. He’s very athletic and can finish above the rim. Omar knows how to score pretty well.” Croskey has built his foundation around scoring and showed that throughout camp. He’ll be an intriguing prospect to watch over the upcoming season, as he could enjoy a breakout campaign with continued work.
#104: 6’1 ’20 Tauris Watson (Myrtle Beach, SC)
Moving onto a player that made a strong impact with his ability to affect all facets of the game, Tauris Watson. He’s a guard prospect with great instincts and a strong nose for the ball. Offensively, Watson does a nice job of setting up his teammates through dribble-penetration and was a willing passer throughout the day. He showed signs of a formidable jumper from all levels, but he made a bigger impression with his driving and finishing. Watson moves well without the ball and is capable of sliding to the off-guard whenever necessary. He fought hard on defense, making scrappy contributions and doing a nice job of containing his assignment. Next in his development process is continuing to work on his shooting off the dribble, as it would make him a more complete offensive player. Coach Staley on Watson: “Tauris is the ultimate glue-guy that will develop into a special player. He has a great knack for the game and has nice two-way instincts.” Watson has a strong IQ and knows how to coexist with any group of teammates, which is part of what allowed him to thrive at camp.
#106: 6’6 ’20 Kelton Talford (Great Falls, SC)
Finishing things up, we look at a player that is just beginning to understand his potential as a two-way terror, Kelton Talford. He’s a long, rangy forward prospect with great athleticism and versatility on both ends of the floor. Talford scores effortlessly from anywhere inside the arc and is quite efficient as a shooter from three-point territory. He possesses an excellent frame, motor, and feel for his skillset, making him a nightmare for most opponents. Defensively, Talford is a monster, given his ability to seamlessly guard three positions at a high level. He’s able to apply pressure as a perimeter defender or protect the rim, which is very rare and simply adds to Talford’s uniqueness as a prospect. He also focuses on doing the little things, from rebounding to hustling, and displayed phenomenal leadership qualities throughout camp. Next in his development process is continuing to refine his shooting off the dribble, as it would make him a dominant two-way player. Coach Staley on Talford: “Kelton has a great motor, attitude, and skillset. He’s very athletic and can score the ball at all three levels. He has a very good post game and finishing ability.” Talford can continue adding strength, which should allow him to impose his will against any type of opponent. Realistically, Talford could emerge as one of the top prospects from camp, given his versatility and unbelievably strong two-way presence.