The third and final installment of the “Freshman 15” has finally arrived and I must say it has been a pleasure watching video on these incoming stars. The ACC is in need of some new blood and if some of these young men stick around for more than six months, I have no doubt that the conference will return to its former high standing.
I tried to split these list up as best as I could but ultimately, it ends up being dominated by Duke and UNC as both are bringing in spectacular classes this season. There is only one player included in this final leg that won’t play his college basketball in the Triangle but we will get there in just a moment.
First, let me quickly give you some names of players that were just outside of my top 15 incoming freshmen:
- Cam Hayes-North Carolina State: An interesting player who is a true point guard. At 6’3 he has good size, he will also put his teammates in a position to be successful as he is a point guard who will initiate the offense first and foremost.
- D’Andre Davis-Louisville: I think he makes more of an impact defensively in his first season but he will make some open shots along the way.
- Joe Bamisile-Virginia Tech: Scoring is the name of the game and he can shoot the heck out of the ball. He is recovering from a knee injury and not cleared for full contact as of May, he may not be 100% right away.
Alright, now that all that is out of the way, let’s talk more about Duke, UNC, and a little bit about an incoming Eagle. Here are the final five of the Freshman 15.
Day’ron Sharpe-Power forward-UNC
Sharpe is just a beast of a kid out of powerhouse Montverde in Florida. He stands 6’10 and roughly 250 pounds (I think he looks bigger than that) and is a crazy finisher around the rim.
This guy was built for Roy Williams’ secondary break offense and is going to posterize ACC opponents on a regular basis. Sharpe also gives the Tarheels a legitimate rim defender that they can team with Armando Bacot at times to really lock down that painted area. The trio of Bacot, Brooks, and Sharpe will make one of, if not the best, defensive front courts in the conference. They may also be the reason why Walker Kessler sees limited minutes during his freshman campaign.
Dj Steward-Combo guard-duke
A long and lanky scoring guard who is still a bit undersized at 6’3, Steward is another Burger Boy that is headed to Durham. He is my dark horse candidate to lead the Blue Devils in scoring as he is just a gifted scorer. Steward can flat out shoot the basketball and will be a tremendous weapon for Coach K in a sixth man role where he will be relied upon to lead the second unit. Best of luck to the opponents second unit on the defensive end.
You all of course know my feelings on the Blue Devils but I think this kid is going to be almost must see TV. Steward is going to have nights where he puts on a shooting display from behind the arc. I am not saying he is going to be Malik Monk, but there are going to be plenty of Gary Trent Jr. games in his future.
Demarr langford-wing-Boston college
Langford is just another in the long line of scoring guards that Jim Christian has been able to reel into the boat at Chestnut Hill. Langford is the brother of former Providence Friar Makai Ashton-Langford who will also play for the Eagles this season after sitting out last season following his transfer.
The younger Langford is a four-star recruit who was once ranked inside the top 75 but now resides around #100.
Coach Christian will be back this season and will boast one of the best scoring perimeters he has had since arriving in Chestnut Hill. Assuming Wynston Tabbs is healthy (admittedly a stretch), he, along with sophomore Jay Heath and Demarr will create a trio that should be at the very least entertaining.
Tabbs and Heath are both shooters while Langford is more of a downhill rim attacking wing. I am not saying this is Sean Marshall, Tyrece Rice, and Louis Hinnant, but it should be a heck of a trio.
Two words, sleeping giant. He’s not exactly asleep, I just love his upside. When I first saw pictures of him when he committed to Duke I thought he was a bit more burly than he actually is. He is actually very thin. At 7’1 however, he runs the floor well and seems to be comfortable with this size.
He will not be the focal point of the Duke offense which will be good for him but he should provide entertainment with put-back dunks and monster blocks.
I am always fascinated by giant centers. Having grown up during the greatest big man era in NBA history, I have an affinity for athletic big men that run the floor and finish with authority. The game has gotten away from that in recent years but I still have an appreciation for it. Mark Williams will hopefully be a multi-year player in Durham that is successful as a throwback.
Rj Davis-Combo guard-UNC
When I say a guard is undersized, shifty, quick as a hiccup, and can score from anywhere inside of halfcourt, who do you think of? Allen Iverson, right? Well, if you don’t, you should. Now, I am not saying that R.J. Davis is Allen Iverson, I mean cmon, but he is soooooo good. The best part of this video is at the 0:23 mark when Davis crosses up his defender and you hear someone say “Oh my god!”
There are those that believe that Davis will play the point at UNC and Caleb Love (an entry from Pt. 1) will man the two, I think that is incorrect. You want this guy off the ball in my opinion. Yes, Love is bigger but Davis is a scorer and while Davis may end up playing the point during his sophomore season, I think he is best suited playing the deuce.