NJCAA DI, Region 10 teams have a long history of producing solid four-year prospects including many NCAA Division I players.
Following the 2011-12 season, several players from Region 10 teams moved onto four-year programs. A few of these players have moved onto Division I institutions. The players who have moved onto DI programs in 2012-13 include Brunswick CC’s Devon Atkinson (Morehead St.) and USC Salkehatchie’s Randall Black (South Carolina St.).
This article will look at the top-15 sophomore prospects heading into the 2012-13 season.
Note: All stats are from the 2011-12 season.
Robert Ojeah – Aiken Technical College
Stats: 2.6 PPG, 6.8 RPG, 34 BLKS, 50%FG
The six-foot-nine Nigerian center impressed at the 2012 All-American JUCO Showcase held at Aiken Technical College on July 20-22. Ojeah’s performance at the showcase has enhanced his recruiting potential as he now has multiple scholarship offers.
Ojeah wasn’t much of an offensive threat during his freshman season in 2011-12. However, he was a steady factor on the boards and as a shot blocker. Ojeah recorded three double-digit rebound games last year.
Maurice Strong – Aiken Technical College
Stats: 11.2 PPG, 9.8 RPG, 1.8 SPG, 64 BLKs
The six-foot-six forward was impressive at the ALL-American JUCO Showcase held at Aiken Technical College on July 20-22. Like Ojeah, Strong’s performance at the showcase enhanced his recruiting potential and he now has multiple scholarship offers.
Strong is athletic and very good in the paint on both ends of the floor. He has a soft touch around the hoop and is an excellent rebounder and a strong shot blocker.
Strong scored in double figures in 18 games and grabbed double-digit rebounds in 19 games during the 2011-12 season.
Faronte Drakeford – Cape Fear CC
Stats: 12.4 PPG, 6.8 RPG, 3.19 ORPG, 1.2 SPG, 54.5% FG
The athletic, six-foot-seven forward is ferocious on the offensive glass. Drakeford collected at least five offensive rebounds in seven contests in 2011-12.
Offensively, Drakeford is strong around the hoop and shoots a high percentage.
Drakeford needs to be more active and consistent on the defensive end particularly on the boards.
Landon Atterberry- Cape Fear CC
Stats: 8.4 PPG, 5.3 RPG, 51% FG
The six-foot-six forward was solid in 2011-12. Atterberry scored in double figures in 10 games and grabbed double figure rebounds twice.
Nalkus Mincer – Clinton JC
Stats: 11.0 PPG, 3.6 RPG, 61% FG, 36% 3Pt
The six-foot-six forward appeared in just 12 games as a freshman in 2011-12. Mincer, a scorer with good shooting ability, had two games where he scored at least 25 points last season. In those two 25-plus point games, he was a combined 25-for 31 from the floor.
Mincer is versatile and likes to hit the offensive glass. He does need to work on his free throw shooting as well as being more consistent on the defensive boards.
Calvin Blackwell – Clinton JC
Stats: 9.0 PPG, 5.5 RPG, 60% FG, 2.4 BPG
The six-foot-five athletic forward was inconsistent in 2011-12. Blackwell had some good games last season where he scored at least 15 points (five times) and grabbed at least eight rebounds (six times). He also had some dud games where he scored less than five points (seven times) and grabbed less than five rebounds (11 times).
Blackwell takes good shots and has a soft touch around the hoop. He also likes to hit the offensive boards and is a good shot blocker. Blackwell does need to do a better job on the defensive boards.
Ronnell Crockett – Spartanburg Methodist College
Stats: 10.6 PPG, 4.6 RPG, 56% FG
The athletic six-foot-three guard was solid in 2011-12. Crockett, a slasher, has the ability to get to rim and draw fouls. He does have to become a better free throw shooter (59% in 2011-12) and get to the line on a more consistent basis. Crockett also needs to get better at distributing the ball and shooting from distance.
Jalen Nesbitt, – Spartanburg Methodist College
Stats: 10.0 PPG, 4.9 RPG, 2.2 APG, 54% FG, 37% 3PT
The six-foot-four guard was named to the All-Region 10 second team in 2011-12. Nesbitt is an all-around player who likes to attack the rack. He also has the ability to hit long range shots.
Travis Black – Spartanburg Methodist College
Stats: 7.5 PPG, 2.2 RPG, 3.1 APG, 1.2 SPG, 50% FG, 44% 3PT, 75% FT
The six-foot-three point guard had an excellent freshman campaign in 2011-12. Black scored, shot and distributed the ball well last year.
Black, came up with five steals versus Clinton JC on February 2, 2012, is also very good on the defensive end.
Kelsey Terry, Spartanburg Methodist College
Stats: 4.3 PPG, 1.5 APG, 62% FG, 91% FT
The six-foot-two guard played in 16 games for the Pioneers as a freshman in 2011-12. Terry shot the ball remarkably well last year and is an excellent free throw shooter.
Montel Baines – USC Salkehatchie
Stats: 11 PPG, 6.7RPG, 53% FG, 77% FT
The six-foot-six, 235-pound forward is a bit undersized to play the four. Baines has a strong body and is a solid rebounder.
Jimmy Givens – USC Salkehatchie
Stats: 14.3 PPG, 2.6 RPG, 2.0 SPG, 45% FG, 37% 3PT
The six-foot-two guard took more than half of his shots in 2011-12 from beyond the three-point line. Givens, a pest on the defensive end, was named to the All-Region 10 first team in 2011-12.
Fare’al Walker – USC Salkehatchie
Stats: 3.6 PPG, 3.7 APG, 49% FG, 81% FT
The six-foot-three point guard had an impressive three-to-one assist-to-turnover ratio in 2011-12. Walker, an excellent distributor and ball handler, averaged less than three shots a game last season.
Terrence Hampton – Cape Fear CC
Stats: 5.6 PPG, 1.9 RPG
The six-foot-six forward will need to improve his shooting percentage in 2012-13. Hampton, played in 21 games in 2011-12, shot 36.7% from the field and 33.9% from beyond the arc last season. 62 of Hampton’s 96 shots were from long distance.
Tobias Pinson – USC Salkehatchie
The six-foot-six guard/ forward spent the 2011-12 at Winthrop University. Pinson, a very good shooter, appeared in just one game for the Eagles and scored five points on two-of-three shooting.
Other sophomores to keep an eye on:
6’7 F Tony Menton (Cape Fear CC), 6’5 F Kurt Rueter (Aiken Tech),6’8 F Kyle Keck (Cape Fear CC), 6’11 C Sean Gribble (Cape Fear CC), 6’8 F Christopher Brown (Aiken Tech), 6’9 C Tevin Brown (Brunswick CC), 6’2 G Quinton Morrow (Brunswick CC), 6’7 F Shaleek Shellbee (Brunswick CC), 6’3 G Eric Turpin (Clinton JC) and 6’3 Guard Ed Dyson (Clinton JC).
Daniel Benjamin has coached basketball for four years.