Posted On: 09/13/18 11:30 AM
Last season, the Southwind Jaguars finished 33-2, with point guard Mark Freeman running the offense.
At the beginning of the 2018 season, Freeman will not be suiting up for Southwind, so head coach Paul Edwards will need a new face at point guard to run the offense to fit each player’s skillset. The Jaguars are one of a few teams in the 15 AAA district to have experience in the backcourt.
Southwind is also in a league of its own because of the length it has.
In the backcourt, the Jaguars will have the likes of Ashton Taylor, Dionte Anding, Jeremiah Miller, and Codey Bates. Taylor, who’s 5-foot-9, didn’t play much over the summer because of an ankle injury but is an experienced guard. Bates, 6-3, came off the bench for Southwind last season and provided some minutes.
Due to Taylor missing most of the summer, Miller, 6-3, got a lot of playing time at point guard. Miller is on a mission to pick up some offers in his final year of high school. Schools such as Southern Illinois, LSU, Middle Tennessee State, and Missouri have shown interest in Miller but have yet to offer.
Miller is more of a scoring guard, which is what the Jaguars could use. At the Jerry Peters Memphis Summer Classic back in June, Miller finished ninth in scoring with 96 points. Southwind went 2-4 in the classic.
Anding, a transfer from Germantown High School, joined the team in the spring. He’s a 5-10 combo guard who can score from different areas of the court. One of Anding’s best performances during the 2017 season came in a 54-51 loss to Kirby High School on February 2 where he scored 18 points.
Losing Freeman is a blow, but the Jaguars have a slew of guards Edwards expects to make a splash on both ends of the court.
“We’re going to add some wrinkles to fit each player’s skillset,” Edwards said. “Now, I have to change some things up. I have to go back to my middle school days. We will see what happens.”
Edwards has plenty of options to choose from to complete his backcourt. Hopefully, the backcourt will be able to coexist with senior forward Kameron Jones, who’s expected to lead the team in scoring and possibly rebounding. Jones, 6-7, is one of the most versatile forwards in the 2019 class. He can play all five positions on the floor, which gives his team another option at guard if he’s needed.
Jones is a difficult matchup because of his outside shooting and ball handling skills. He’s also pretty efficient from the free throw line.
“Kameron is a great kid. He’s a smart kid,” Edwards said. “He has grown on and off the court. When you see him, you will see how he has matured. He’s playing more outside now. He’s going to be a surprise to some people this year because he’s just not a back-to-the-basket player anymore.
“He will be a small forward, power forward, and a face-up basketball player on a lot of nights.”