#OTRHoopsReport: Best Available Update – January 31, 2017

Class of 2017 Trevon Duval of IMG Academy is the nation’s top uncommitted guard. Photo cred – @CoachHemi

The spring always brings a little drama in terms of recruiting news for college basketball fans. While Kentucky has already locked up another top class with PJ Washington, Jarred Vanderbilt, Quade Green, Shai Gilgeous Alexander and Nic Richards. Arizona has snagged an impressive class as well with DeAndre Ayton, Ira Lee, Alex Barcello and Brandon Randolph. Even with Hamidou Diallo leaving high school early to enroll at Kentucky, there are still a few impact players left on the board in the class of 2017. Here is a look at a few of those names.

By: @JLHemingwayPSB

Mohammad Bamba – Westtown HS – Center

Bamba is living up to his reputation as a defensive specialist who can enforce the lane. Last season we saw Bamba put up a triple double in a win over Potters House Christian Academy. This season in a match up versus DeAndre Ayton he put up nine points, 14 rebounds and five blocks. Although his offensive skill set is not as far along as his athleticism, he has the ceiling to play well beyond college and into the NBA for years to come.

Bamba recently made an official visit to Kentucky last week. Per Andrew Slater of 247 Sports, Texas head coach Shaka Smart has been in to see him recently. He also plans on taking a visit to Duke according to Corey Evans of Rivals.com.

Trevon Duval – IMG Academy – Point Guard

Duval’s senior season has been terrific. He has answered questions that our staff early in our evaluations about his ability to run a team as a point guard. Early on Duval was a score first guard who had a quick trigger from deep. Lately he is showing the poise, leadership and willingness to involve his teammates as a point guard. His performance at Hoop Hall is a symbol for his maturation. He scored just 12 points, but dished out 13 assists and grabbed six rebounds in a win over Wasatch Academy.

Per Jeff Borzello of ESPN, Duval will visit officially Kansas tonight. He also has Duke, Arizona, Seton Hall and Baylor on his list.

Brian Bowen – LaLumiere – Small Forward

Bowen has legitimately grown as a prospect in the time that we have evaluated him. He has turned from a do-it-all forward who could defend multiple positions to a player who is a bona fide go-to scorer. In terms of professional projections, he has all the measureables that NBA front office personnel are looking for at the small forward position. Add in his polished skill set that includes a post up game and consistent shooting from the arc and Bowen’s ceiling is as high as any in this class. Although he has not had a signature performance to speak of that we have seen this high school season, he has given consistent performances such as his 18 point, 10 rebound night at the Hoop Hall Classic.

Per Corey Evans of Rivals.com, Bowen visited Michigan State last week. Arizona is also mentioned as a major player in his recruitment.

MJ Walker – Jonesboro HS – Shooting Guard

Walker’s reputation as a strong, physical guard is well documented. The questions that needed to be answered after his senior year centered around his ability to be a lead scorer and consistent range on his jump shot. After two nights in Fort Myers, Florida at the City of Palms Classic, Walker quelled all those whispers with terrific showings. He scored 29 points versus Lehigh and then followed that with a 41 point explosion versus Jemison HS. That included 7-14 from 3 point range. Walker is squarely at the top of the nation’s list of top shooting guards.

Per Shun Williams of OntheRadarHoops.com, Florida State and Georgia Tech lead the way in Walker’s recruitment. Those are the only two schools where he has visited campus.


Coach Hemi-100-100Jonathan Hemingway is a National Evaluator for the OTRHoopsReport. Hemingway serves on the Board of Selectors for the Naismith Trophy. He is also the publisher of CoachHemi.com. He has been involved in the community since 1996 as a coach, camp director and evaluator. You can reach him via email at JonathanHemingway@PeachStateBasketball.com and follow him on  twitter @JLHemingwayPSB

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