Posted On: 06/5/19 1:20 PM
No stranger to the spotlight, people have been talking about Carter Whitt and his game since he was in middle school. He is ahead of the curve as a 2021, already picking up 6 ACC offers and 2 SEC offers. Even with that, he feels that there is more he needs to prove and more that people need to know about him. Whitt is different from most other PG prospects in today’s game as he is a true pass-first player. He might not be the loudest guy or one that is constantly searching for attention, but his game speaks pretty loudly itself. This article will have a different look than what you usually see; Whitt will discuss his style of play, his personality, playing against top older competition for a while, and what he wants to show in the upcoming summer months. Here is an in-depth look at the unique floor general.
I still remember the very first time I saw Whitt play at the 2017 CP3 Rising Stars Camp. He immediately caught my attention with his innate passing ability, unselfishness, and feel for the game, all rare qualities for a player at that age. Whitt has continued to use such play as his calling card, impressing coaches and helping his teams along the way. “I think the biggest thing that sets me apart from any other guard in the class is how I can create for my teammates and make all of my teammates play up to my level. I think I can control and take over a game without scoring a ton of points,” he said. Others seems to have the same opinion of Whitt. In a conversation I had with UVA HC Tony Bennett last spring, Whitt’s name came up and the first thing Coach Bennett mentioned was his passing ability. I’ve continued to hold the opinion that he is the best passer in the class. Others may make flashier passes, but I think he makes the correct pass at the correct time more consistently than any other 2021 I’ve watched.
One of the more impressive aspects of Whitt’s production on the travel circuit is that he’s done it on a 17U shoe circuit each of the last two summers. After playing with Boo Williams in EYBL last year, he is with Team Loaded NC for this travel season. Taking this approach has given Whitt a challenge but has also played a big part in his development. “I think last summer playing 17U EYBL helped me improve a ton just because of the physicality of the game, and the size and athleticism of the guys I was going against. Last summer was a good year to get used to 17s and be ready for it this summer,” he said. Sometimes I’ve forgotten that he’s a 2021 prospect when watching Loaded this spring, he seems very comfortable and more than holds his own. Whitt has taken on high-level older guys, but has also gotten used to playing alongside a multitude of top players. The experience he has gained paid off in April, with offers flooding in after the live period. “Playing up this year has still helped me a lot more than it would if I was playing 16U. I feel like playing 17U last summer has really helped me come out and be ready to play this summer with no difference or adjustment having to be made,” he said. Not a complacent player, Whitt is still looking to add more to his game and elevate himself above the other elite 2021 prospects.
As mentioned before, Whitt’s ability to get teammates involved is a valuable asset and has resulted in attention from HM coaches across the country. However, he doesn’t want to be known solely as a passer. Whitt said, “I feel like so far this summer I’ve proven that I can facilitate just as well as anyone in the country in 2020 or 2021 but I think for the rest of the summer I need to show everyone that I can really score and that my shot is consistent. I also think I need to be getting more in game dunks and keep proving my athleticism.” His athletic ability is an underrated part of his game, he’s had some impressive above the rim plays in transition this spring that most people don’t expect. Whitt carries a bigger scoring load for his HS team and has shown flashes getting his own baskets on the travel circuit; I think this month will be huge for him in proving himself as a scorer. He’ll have the ball in his hands a ton for Leesville in June and will be asked to put the ball in the basket often. Adding to his scoring ability and displaying it could put him over the few PG’s that are currently ahead of him 2021. Whitt echoed that, saying “I think the biggest thing for me to prove myself as the best guard in my class is to become a knockdown shooter from 3 off catch and shoot opportunities, and off the dribble. I also think I need to finish better and be more efficient on offense.” Having felt snubbed on invites to Pangos and the NBPA Top 100 Camp, I expect Whitt to come into the summer with a chip on his shoulder and start it off by dominating at NC’s June Live Period Team Camp.
Another unique trait of Whitt’s is his personality and demeanor. In a time where too many guys are loud and obnoxious, Whitt is calm and quiet, letting the spotlight find him instead of seeking it out. Some people may say he’s too quiet and laid-back, but Whitt doesn’t think he should be misunderstood as someone who lacks leadership qualities or confidence. “On the court I’m not super vocal but on every team I’ve played on people always look to me for leadership and I more so lead by example rather than getting on people. I do get on teammates but I think that is something I need to do more often to improve as a leader.” If you watch him play, he is not shy or timid, and has shown that he wants the ball in big moments. He controls the game and sets an example for his team where they can be poised and composed in any situation. “I think people get lacking confidence mixed up with being calm. Just because I don’t celebrate after every play and do stuff like that doesn’t mean I’m not confident. I feel like every game I play in, I’m the best player on the floor,” Whitt said. While his approach may not be as exciting or entertaining as others, it shows maturity and prepares him well for the future.
Although he still has 2 years left, Whitt is well on his way to having success in college and beyond. He already has ideal size for a PG, possesses an advanced skill-set, and understands the areas he needs to focus on to prepare for and adapt to the college game. One has no choice but to appreciate the way he plays. Whitt seems determined to take things to another level this summer; I’m excited to see what he adds and to see what he does in June and July. Don’t be surprised at all if Whitt passes some of the other top 2021 prospects within the next year. His game and personality are uncommon; the eventual results will be too.