Posted On: 06/16/16 4:00 PM
The Vantage Hoops Virginia 2017 Top 150 Rankings were introduced yesterday, and now it’s time to take a closer look. Below is a breakdown of the top 10 guards in the class. Stay tuned for more content, including additional position-by-position break-downs, biggest stock boosters, and more.
Matt Coleman | 6’3” | Oak Hill Academy | #2 Overall
One of the best point guard prospects to come out of Virginia in a number of years, Matt Coleman demonstrates an exceptional feel and understanding for the game along with dynamic playmaking ability. He’s best in the open court, where he exhibits good vision and makes quick decisions. Owning a smooth arsenal of dribble moves along with the ability to change pace, Coleman is just as effective in the half-court as well. His shot has improved, but still needs to remain more consistent. With that being said, he has a very good middle game and understands how and when to beat teams both as a scorer and facilitator. Coleman is quick, athletic with advanced ball skills and passing ability, is a crafty finisher, and displays solid leadership intangibles. A hard-worker who is super smart and competes, Matt owns rare confidence and feel at the lead guard spot.
Devontae Shuler | 6’3” | Oak Hill Academy | #3 Overall
A high level athlete who has the ability to lock-down opponents on the perimeter, Devontae Shuler can defend the 1 or the 2 on the ball and be effective as a result of his instincts and aggression. The South Carolina native, who transferred to Oak Hill at the beginning of his junior year, is a good rebounding guard who likes to play an up-and-down style and can stretch the floor from long range off the dribble. He’s an acrobatic finisher around the basket who plays above the rim. Oklahoma State, Clemson, NC State, South Carolina and Southern Cal are among the schools recruiting the talented and exciting guard prospect.
Lindell Wigginton | 6’1” | Oak Hill Academy | #5 Overall
With the unfortunate injury to Duke-bound Harry Giles that sidelined him for the season, Oak Hill needed each of their guys to step up. One of their biggest and most consistent contributors this past season was Lindell Wigginton. The Nova Scotia native, who led the team in scoring, took his game to another level during his junior campaign. An explosive, skilled guard with good paint getting ability, Lindell is very crafty around the rim. He has the ability to elevate and finish in traffic, and knows how to fill the lanes correctly in the open court. Owning a consistent and tireless motor and quick reactions, Wigginton is a good rebounding guard with solid hands. The big question remains whether or not he can run the show at the point, but Lindell has demonstrated the ability to defend and handle pressure as well as work and read ball-screens. USC, Texas A&M, Arkansas, Iowa State, Arizona State, Louisville, and Arizona are the latest schools to get involved in his recruitment.
Aaron Thompson | 6’3” | Paul VI | #7 Overall
Kevin Stallings and the Pittsburgh Panthers have landed one of the best pure point guards in Virginia’s 2017 class. Aaron Thompson is a reliable facilitator and decision maker who demonstrates a great feel for the game. His jump shot still needs improvement, but he’s shown a great deal of progress in that aspect over the past few months. With that being said, Aaron is a super mature and gifted lead guard who has the look of a future floor general. Owning a solid skill-set which features craftiness as a ball-handler and passer, Thompson has the ability to process the game and make reads at a high level. He controls the game to a degree, and usually has a plan with the ball. As a result of his quick feet, strong frame, and work rate, Thompson is a very solid defender on and off the ball. He’ll need to continue to work on his perimeter jumper to truly excel at the next level, but his desire to be considered among the best is well-noted.
Mario Haskett | 6’3” | L.C. Bird | #10 Overall
Mario Haskett is blossoming into one of the more complete guard prospects in Virginia’s 2017 class. A high IQ, athletic guard who demonstrates a smooth and accurate stroke from long range, perhaps the most valuable and consistent thing that Haskett brings to the table is his defense. Given his well-built frame, quickness, length, instincts, and tenacity, Mario is a terrific on-ball defender who has the ability to absolutely lock-down and frustrate his man for an entire game. Almost equally impressive on the offensive end, Haskett is learning to play on and off the ball. He’s a skilled and crafty guard who has really improved as a ball-handler and decision maker. Haskett is a good paint getter who can finish with flair and efficiency around the rim. Mario has seen a recent expansion in his recruitment over the last six months. Creighton, Harvard, Virginia Tech, Yale, Minnesota, Providence and Murray State are among the schools who’ve been involved in his recruitment. Given his ability to stretch the floor at a high rate and defend multiple positions effectively, Haskett should thrive in whatever role he’s asked to play at the next level.
Ty-Shon Alexander | 6’4” | Oak Hill Academy | #12 Overall
Creighton is getting a lights out shooter in Ty-Shon Alexander. The strong, broad-shouldered guard knows how to move off the ball and space the floor. He must be accounted for in transition, given the quick release and seemingly limitless range he demonstrates on his jump shot. He’s a solid defender who rebounds well out of his position, and gives great effort on both ends of the court. Alexander will likely provide an early impact given his ability to stretch the floor at a high level.
Mastadi Pitt | 6’1” | Hampton | #20 Overall
Perhaps pound-for-pound the the toughest player in his class, Mastadi Pitt has exhibited a clutch factor to go along with the ability to get into the paint and create havoc. A big-time shot maker, the broad-shouldered, strong lead guard is a skilled and powerful finisher in traffic. He’s an ambidextrous finisher who seeks and absorbs contact around the rim. Owning a relentless work rate to go along with a super competitive disposition, Pitt has demonstrated the ability to score it in bunches from all three levels. An underrated defender, Pitt rebounds well in traffic and does a good job pushing the ball in transition. Mastadi is a humble, hard-working young man who wants to be great, and knows what it takes to do so.
Johquin “Pinky” Wiley | 6’ | L.C. Bird | #21 Overall
There’s rarely, if ever, a time when Pinky Wiley isn’t the smartest player on the floor. The skilled lead guard is an old school floor general who knows how to make his teammates better. He showcases big time vision along with the ability to control tempo and dictate pace. A skilled distributor who has the ability to pass accurately with either hand, Wiley always has his head up while handling and is prepared to look ahead and drop an easy dime. Equally as impressive in half-court sets, Pinky can work ball screens and get into the paint where he finishes in traffic efficiently with either hand. Perhaps what’s most intriguing about Pinky is his sheer understanding of the game. He’s a true student who understands the game at a mental level, and embraces being in situations where he can control the outcome of the game. He is without a doubt a high level playmaker who could be a big time steal at the next level.
Jahlil Jenkins | 6’ | Virginia Academy | #22 Overall
Jahlil Jenkins has time in and time out proven himself in the biggest, most challenging contests. Like a diamond, he shines under pressure, and he shined brightest at the state tournament in Petersburg this past winter. The highly skilled lead guard has an explosive first step along with the ability to change pace and accelerate with quickness and precision. He can get into the paint and create consistently for himself and others, and has the ability to shoot efficiently from the bounce and off the catch from long range. A true competitor and gym rat, Jenkins gives a great amount of effort on both ends of the court. He’s got a good feel for the game, solid defensive instincts, and an incredible amount of competitiveness. Jenkins should not be counted out in a toe-to-toe matchup with any of the other guards in his class.
Jalen Ray | 6’ | Hampton | #28 Overall
A smooth and talented scorer out of the 757, Jalen Ray has demonstrated the ability to fill it up in bunches. The lefty, who is pictured above, is an accurate shooter from long range, exhibiting a quick and confident release from the catch. He’s a crafty handler who can change speeds and create space off the bounce, where he’s able to consistently hit jumpers from as well. A sneaky athlete who can elevate and finish in traffic, Ray is also a good rebounder given his length and strong hands. Competing at a high level will be no problem for Jalen. He has some inner-dog in him, and it seems to come out of him in the most competitive environments.