November 19, 2013

Junior Post Stars

North Carolina has made it clear that the 2015 class is going to be a very important one in terms of landing one or more guys who can play in the paint.

The staff in Chapel Hill has identified some early targets. Many of them have already received clear communication of a scholarship offer and others are seriously on the radar.

TarHeelIllustrated runs down some of the top guys on the wish list of Roy Williams, complete with scouting analysis and areas of impact.

Stephen Zimmerman -- (Bishop Gorman, Las Vegas, Nev.) --We start off with a guy who has an offer and fits the system at UNC like a glove. This 7-0 is agile, runs the floor really well and has a beautiful skill set for a big man. He's a southpaw, making him more difficult to defend and he has a feathery soft face up game. He dribbles extremely well for a big man and has a full arsenal of one on one moves, complete with superb footwork and the ability to draw fouls. So far, out of all of the 2015 big men, Zimmerman has stood out as the best prospect of the bunch.

Diamond Stone -- (Dominican HS, Milwaukee, Wis.) --This physically imposing center goes about 6-10 and 260 pounds. He has those diserable broad shoulders, a thick upper body and sturdy legs. He operates exclusively in the low block and he is the best seal and score guy that we've watched in this class. He's a strong rebounder in his area and is a true center all the way.

Ivan Rabb -- (Bishop O'Dowd, Oakland, Cal.) --This long PF from Oakland is likely the best rebounder of the bunch, especially offensively. He stands 6-9 and has a 7-3 wingspan, super quick feet and plenty of explosion. He can face up and he can put in work on the block. His upside is through the roof and he is very comfortable in the mid-range area, out to about 17 feet.

Chase Jeter -- Zimmerman's teammate at Bishop Gorman (Nev.) Las Vegas is an elite high major prospect in his own right. Jeter stands 6-10 and weighs a respectable 215-pounds. He's agile, mobile and skilled. He runs the floor hard, has that dangerous soft face-up jumper and he does the dirty work inside on the boards. We absolutely love that he's a great communicator on the court and he reads the game well. A smart guy with sound instincts, strong fundamentals, plenty of length and good atheticism. Jeter is projecting as a top 25 prospect in the nation.

Daniel Giddens -- ( Wheeler High School, Marietta, Ga.) --This guy is a 6-10, 225-pound raw monster. He runs the floor, blocks a ton of shots and he's a horse on the boards. What he lacks in offensive skill, he makes up for playing physical near the rim and owning the glass. He runs well and his offensive skill moves are improving each time we see him. Keep an eye on this guy.

Thomas Bryant -- (Huntington Prep, Huntington, WV) -- This Rochester, NY native transferred to Huntington Prep (WV) where he will play under the coaching of Rob Fulford. He's an animal who gives you 110% each time out. It's extreme exertion to the point of just plain ridiculousness with Bryant. He fights, scraps, claws, grunts, growls and plays as hard as he can all the time. He blocks shots, works the glass on both sides and runs the floor like his hair is on fire. His offensive skills are a work in progress, but nobody works harder than Bryant.

Luke Maye -- (Hough High School, Huntersville, NC) His father was a former quarterback at UNC and this fundamentally sound and skilled big man is one of the better looking PFs in the southeast region. He shoots it well, grabs his share of boards and is a savvy guy in terms of footwork and positioning. UNC has shown early interest in the 6-7 PF and this spring and summer will be his chance to go from a regional recruit to a national one.

Carlton Bragg -- (Villa Angela St. Joseph, Cleveland, OH.) -- The Cleveland PF runs on the Adidas circuit and we haven't seen him perform live yet, but those who have talk about his versatility, high motor and infectious charisma. He shoots it well, attacks the rim and makes plays in transition. His stock is on the rise and he's projecting to be a national recruit.

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