It’s amazing what a few inches growth and a change of setting can do for a player. The start of his Sophomore year, Team Winston’s Akia Pruitt was a 6’3” highly active post player. Fast forward to the start of his Junior year, Pruitt grew to 6’5”.

Now, his Junior year has ended and he is half way through his AAU season with Team Winston, Pruitt is a long 6’7”. Hell, even his high school’s roster, Pruitt is still listed at 6’5”. The constant has remained throughout Pruitt’s 4 inches of growth, his high motor and his level of activity and production.

In all honesty, the power forward’s game is much more rugged than it is pretty and it is certainly something that you have to watch in multiple settings. For example, when playing for his high school (RJ Reynolds) Pruitt does not get any touches that are initiated for him in the paint. They play a five out fluid system and he has to attack while facing or generate his own paint touches. However, when playing with Team Winston, 75% of the touches Pruitt receives are drawn up for him to be in the paint.

Throughout his Junior year at RJ Reynolds High School in Winston-Salem, Pruitt averaged 11.5 Points, grabbed 8 Boards, gave out 2 Assists, and blocked 3.2 shots per game. This stat line is very telling of the player that Pruitt is, he produces across the board.

For starters Pruitt is a big time defensive presence. He has an understanding of angles and footwork, but also the natural gifts of length and quick-twitch athleticism. Pruitt is a great second jumper when protecting the rim, and really racks up deflections across the board. These same attributes also lend to Pruitt being a very good, 2-way rebounder.

When playing in the high post, Pruitt is able to beat you in multiple ways as well. He has good vision, and reads the defense well to hit cutting players. He also is able to attack the basket with a dribble or two, and finish at the rim. He loves getting out to stretch his legs in transition, and finishes high above the rim of dump offs. Pruitt also is a great tip-in and put-back finisher.

Now standing as a lengthy 6’7” and a developing 185 pounds, Pruitt’s body is rounding out. He is applying all the skills he had as an undersized post player and utilizing them on his current frame. His game may not be the prettiest, however the production is always there.

During his run at the Phenom Hoops Challenge, Pruitt started with little fan-fare. By the end of the event he had several D1 programs following all his games. For the event Pruitt averaged a double-double and finished with several high light reel finishes.

My note to college coaches, the kid produces consistently and his frame is still growing. Sit by and watch, you’ll miss your turn.

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