Top Performances: South Florida Underclassmen


Posted On: 01/1/18 5:41 PM

Thaddeus Franklin, Chaminade Madonna

6-foot Class of 2021 prospect was lethal from beyond the arc, hitting 5-of-6 en route to a 22-point performance in the championship game of the Adidas Holiday Slam. A well-built guard with a beyond his years savvy, Franklin added five assists. That statistical category is one he was particularly proficient in throughout the tournament, as he piled up more assists than any other guard in this season’s event.

Jamal Mashburn Jr., Gulliver Prep

Gulliver Prep absorbed some tough, learning experience losses recently. While that may be so, Mashburn Jr. still displayed the scoring aptitude and mental moxie of a First Team All-State guard.

The Class of 2020 Mashburn Jr. scored 20 points in the loss 70-57 to Section 1/New York State foe Scarsdale. Mashburn added another 20-point showing to go with four assists during a 101-72 thrashing at the hands of a North Miami team that rode the hot hand of Richard Charles (43 points, 11 3-point field goals).

While Mashburn Jr.’s name has special resonance with Miami Heat fans of the 90’s era, Mashburn’s game could not be more different than his 6-foot-8, 240-pound father’s. One of Mashburn’s primary threats is his reliable mid-range jumper. He gets high off the ground and has a high release point, an aspect which makes his shot difficult to defend at this level of play.

John Square Florida Christian

Florida Christian is 9-3 and much of that has to do with the emergence of the 6-foot-6 sophomore. Square isn’t your prototype small forward. He loves to get inside and play physical and is as effective as shot blocker as many imposing rim protectors.

Offensively, he’s grown by leaps and bounds from his freshman season. In incorporating a nifty floater and crafty at the rim finishing ability, Square is playing with a seasoned savvy. He scored 21 points, tore down 12 rebounds during a loss to Chaminade Madonna.

Against Mariner, Square had one of his three double doubles during the tournament by posting 21 points and 15 rebounds. He displayed his defensive tenacity and instinctive style in that one, coming up with six blocked shots.

Dudley Blackwell, Westminster Academy

A high-level athlete buoyed by a monstrous above the rim game, Blackwell is a special up-and-coming talent on a stacked Westminster team entertaining aspirations to earn back to back state titles.

The 6-foot-6 guard/forward already has offers from high-major programs and is showing a knack for scoring in a variety of ways. With an ability to put the ball on the floor and create plays, he’s got the toolset to become a major versatile talent in the years that follow. Blackwell’s ability to soar in for stickback dunks and attack the rim through traffic is indicative of what an enticing, high-ceiling prospect he is.