NBPA Top 100: Eric Bossi's first session observations
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. -- The NBPA Top 100 Camp kicked off on Wednesday afternoon on the campus of Virginia. The event is can't miss because players hit the floor and compete regardless of summertime shoe affiliation. During the first session, Scottie Lewis' all-around game impressed.
SCOTTIE LEWIS IMPRESSES ON OWN
Like just about everybody else, I've become conditioned to seeing five-star wing Scottie Lewis alongside five-star high school and summer teammate Brian Antoine. At the NBPA Top 100 Camp, Lewis is not playing alongside Antoine and because of that has much more of an opportunity to play with the ball in his hands.
Already a guy that I consider the best all-around defensive player in the 2019 class, Lewis showed playmaking ability for others and was really good off the dribble and as a scorer in a 16 point, five rebound and two assist outing. He was everywhere on both ends of the floor and seemed to be the only player on his camp team that really brought the energy.
Lewis punctuated his play with what had to be the best single defensive play I've seen all spring when he chased down athletic four-star point guard Jahmius Ramsey and erased his emphatic dunk attempt at the highest point with a major block.
Down to a final seven of Villanova, St. John’s, Kentucky, Duke, Florida, Harvard and Stanford, Lewis said that the next trip he takes will be to Stanford (in the next week or so) and that he's not looking make a decision until sometime in the mid winter or early spring.
DAHMIR BISHOP SHOULD BE A HIGH MAJOR PRIORITY
At Rivals.com, we've advocated for tough Philly shooting guard Dahmir Bishop to be recruited by more high level programs. I'm not going to back off of that after his first session at NBPA Top 100.
Bishop was lights out from all over the place with his jumper scoring 23 quick points on a pretty efficient 9-15 shooting. He also gives it to you defensively and appears to be a guy that others enjoy playing with.
Providence and Cincinnati have turned up the heat, VCU, Temple, Kansas State and Seton Hall have been in there for a bit and others are making an impression. If he plays in July like he did in April and to start off camp this week, even more offers will fly in.
JADEN SPRINGER'S ATHLETICISM ALLOWS HIM TO STAND OUT
In the class of 2020, heck any class, there are few athletes more impressive than Jaden Springer.
The combo guard from North Carolina is a true high flyer and seems to almost toy with people in how he decides to turn it on and off whenever he needs to. Wednesday's example was a relatively simple baseline drive that out of nowhere turned into a 360 jam and it's not like there was nobody around him.
The real key for Springer is that he's trusting his jump shot more and more. Maryland and Georgia were new offers this spring joining the likes of South Carolina, Vanderbilt, Wake Forest, Kansas State, Auburn, Tennessee, N.C. State and others.
THE RISE OF KIRA LEWIS CONTINUES
We've already detailed Kira Lewis plenty this spring, but I want to point out once again that there's no doubt he'll be making a big climb in the next rankings.
Could he make it all the way to five-star status? I'm not yet sure he will get that far but if he doesn't he won't be too far away.
Lewis has extreme quickness, is wired to get baskets and plays with a pretty good motor. He was impressive in his first camp game and I think when it's all said and done he has the tools to transition from smallish shooting/combo guard to somebody who can play as a scoring point guard.
Lewis just visited Kentucky and the Wildcats haven't offered yet but one could be coming after they watch him again in July. Alabama, Auburn, Kansas, Louisville, Indiana, UConn, Pitt, Clemson, Florida State, LSU, Tennessee, Vanderbilt and countless others have, though, and I expect Lewis to be among the most closely watched players in the country come July.
JUSTIN MOORE IS PERFECT FOR VILLANOVA
Jay Wright and his staff have done it again, they've put the hammer directly to the head of the nail and found an incredible fit in Justin Moore.
The product of the DC area --which has been good to the Wildcats -- reminds me a lot of Phil Booth and I think he's got a little more juice in his legs and ability to play some spot minutes as a point guard than Booth does. Regardless, though, he's just another in the assembly line of versatile, tough and fundamentally sound players that have been rolling through Philly and helping Nova make a case for consideration as a modern blueblood.
SOME QUICK NOTES FROM SESSION ONE
... One of the bigger surprises to me during the spring was that "big name" programs didn't jump all over E.j. Liddell. He's slightly undersized as a power forward but he can really shoot and is tremendously explosive straight up off the floor. As it stands, Illinois, Missouri, Kansas State and Ohio State are fine without others jumping in and could be a cut above the rest.
... Texas A&M snagged a good one in shooting guard Chris Harris. Harris is tough, he's unafraid to let it fly and he is a sneaky good athlete who simply has a great feel for scoring the ball. He should be a perfect replacement for Admon Gilder.
... Five-star combo forward Precious Achiuwa has been electric during the spring, well at least in spurts. It was kind of the same deal on the first day of NBPA Camp. When he played with energy, his 6-foot-9 frame, athleticism and inside/out ability made him virtually impossible to stop. He's still an elite prospect, but some others have been more consistent and could pass him in the next set of rankings. If I had to bet on his recruitment, though, I would call it a race between UConn and St. John's at this point.
... Gonzaga nabbed a good one in Anton Watson. Mark Few's program has become renowned for skilled big guys and while Watson certainly has some skill, he is in my eyes a bit of a throwback to the days of Ronny Turiaf — in terms of attitude and approach — with his willngness to scrap, play tough and muscle his way to rebounds and buckets. I would bet on him being another in a long line of All-WCC players for the Zags.
... Finally, four-star wing Max Agbonkpolo didn't do anything at all to hurt his soaring stock. It's always been a long term play with him because of his long frame, overall skill and lack of consistency due to lack of strength. But the future is coming quickly as his skill and versatility are starting to overtake his lack of strength.