Posted On: 04/16/18 12:05 AM
High school basketball, at its best, offers a structure and formality that AAU teams typically lack. Months of practice time and differing goals mandate the style chasm.
Numerous players offered new looks and new playing styles this month after joining AAU programs. Take a look at how the talented hoopers adjusted to new roles and new coach demands.
Dontae Stringer, WACG 15u
Dontae played often for Summit High over the winter. Stringer is the younger brother of DeMontay Dixon. They have surprisingly different playing styles. Where DeMontay likes to face-up and hit the jumper Stringer is a little grittier. They both block shots with their impressive height, but Stringer puts his nose in there a little bit more than Dixon did at the young age. Dontae Stringer has a pugnacious quality to him that will really help down the line. Stringer’s mobility with WACG sets him up to be a future wing scorer. Currently he lacks the lateral footwork to guard quick guards. That evolves with physical maturity and Dontae is still growing in to his body. In Birmingham, Stringer was rebounding outside his area. This is a fantastic early sign for bigger players. It shows athleticism, but also hunger. The latter cannot really be taught. Stringer pulled down an offensive rebound from behind a guard. With WACG, Stringer often played the baseline wing of a 2-3 zone. Off reb from behind a guard. He showed skill and body control by challenging shots without fouling.
JC Crawford, Clarksville Select 17u
Mt. Juliet High played JC Crawford a little this winter, but the Class of 2019 point guard showcased his strengths and weaknesses more prominently this weekend. Crawford is very quick. At 5-foot-9ish he has to be. Smaller guards only succeed at the college level with incredible quickness, outrageous hops, or both. Crawford is not a jump over your head guy, but he is elusive and tough to track.
Randy Brady, WACG
Formerly a Baylor School star freshman, Randy Brady intends to transfer to Brentwood Academy. Expect him to instantly supplant a starter on the already talented team. Brady owns a world of talent. The Class of 2021 wing can do everything very well. His greatness comes from versatility and wonderful size for his eventual position. Brady has no problem attacking and then attacking some more. Almost any high school team in America could use this volume scorer.
Ryan Wilcox, WHBH 16u
Ryan Wilcox looked stiff when I saw him in February/March. Unbeknownst to me he was recovering from knee surgery (2017) still. His bounce now is night and day from just a month ago. Wilcox was hopping above the tin routinely. He operated from the arc and looked comfortable in the open floor.