With arguably the best all-around prospect in the 2013 class, skilled forward Jabari Parker of Simeon (IL), the depth and overall talent among small forwards is palpable. The group extends beyond Parker, though, and has a dozen or more prospects that elite high majors will find are worth landing for next season.
The hype behind Parker has extended to a level beyond the average top high school prospect, with the back story that he has NBA bloodlines, is respectful and has a media savvy personality. Parker is among the most skilled prospects in the land, without a doubt, though he’s perhaps not the player that Sports Illustrated has hyped to the country.
Parker may or may not be No. 1 in the class overall, but he’s certainly the best at his position. It seems likely that Parker is favoring a school at this point, with speculation that Michigan State, Duke or potentially Kentucky leads for his services.
Just beyond Parker is James Young, a star from Michigan that was dominant from the word “go” as the spring evaluation period started, and hasn’t quit yet. He doesn’t have the overall skill or height that Parker has, but he may be a more versatile scorer, especially when he is in attack mode and can open up to the outside. He’s made no secret of his desire for a Kentucky Wildcats scholarship offer that he eventually received, but he also looks like an ideal fit for Michigan State’s system. Young seems like a surefire star wherever he ends up.
The right adjective to describe Rondae Jefferson is a jack of all trades. At times he played anywhere from point guard to wing forward, but his rebounding ability and mid-range effectiveness seem to peg him at the “3″ for the college level. He boasts an athletic game, and utilizes it to mix it up in the paint as needed. Jefferson looks like a Big East grinder without repute.
Slick shooter and skilled offensive forward Brannen Greene comes in at No. 4, the top committed player among wing forwards as he is headed to play for the Kansas Jayhawks. Greene could possibly play shooting guard at times on the next level, and should be excellent for Kansas.
Not far behind the pack is Kuran Iverson, who has a realistic ceiling of No. 2 in this group. If he was a stock, buying Iverson at the beginning of spring would have netted Apple-like returns, with his reportedly outstanding performance at the NBPA Top 100 part of a solid several month run. Iverson has as much upside as anyone.
The deep and talented Memphis-area boasts Nick King, who may be slipping under the radar but is good enough to come in at No. 6 on this list. King was not as consistent or dominant as some might have expected he would be lately, but he still ranks as a player that can be a second option on a great college basketball team.
Muscle-bound wing Semi Ojeleye has the power game his frame would suggest, but can also hit outside shots. Like No. 10 Ishmail Wainwright, Ojeleye has a thick build that seems ready for college tomorrow. Of the two, Ojeleye is more advanced at this point, and well-rounded.
No. 8 Troy Williams was very oversold as a top-10 player in the class nationally early on, and is more appropriately ranked in the top-30 range. His athleticism and length are impressive, and he certainly exposed observers to a more well-rounded and consistent game as the summer progressed.
Sometimes players that make early commitments can be overlooked as they aren’t on the board to be pursued, and that may have happened with Marc Loving. He pledged to the Ohio State Buckeyes early on, but has all the look of a dynamite “3″ in the Big Ten, with a smooth, well-rounded game. Loving is completely underrated by some sources at this point.
|1||Jabari Parker||6'-8"||220||Simeon (IL)||Mac Irvin Fire|
|2||James Young||6'-6"||190||Troy (MI)||The Family|
|3||Rondae Jefferson||6'-6"||205||Chester (PA)||Team Final|
|4||Brannen Greene||6'-6"||185||Tift County (GA)||Atlanta Celtics||Kansas|
|5||Kuran Iverson||6'-8"||190||Fishburne Military (VA)||NY Lightning|
|6||Nick King||6'-6"||210||East (TN)||Bluff City Legends|
|7||Semi Ojeleye||6'-6"||205||Ottawa (KS)||Spiece Mokan|
|8||Troy Williams||6'-6"||180||Oak Hill Academy (VA)||Boo Williams|
|9||Marc Loving||6'-7"||200||St. John's (OH)||All Ohio Red||Ohio State|
|10||Ishmail Wainwright||6'-5"||190||Montrose Christian (MD)||Team Takeover|
|11||Deonte Burton||6'-4"||205||Vincent (WI)||Terry Porter Elite||Marquette|
|12||Dakarai Allen||6'-6"||175||Sheldon (CA)||PHPS|
|13||Brandon Austin||6'-6"||175||Imhotep Charter (PA)||Team Philly|
|14||VJ Beachem||6'-6"||170||New Haven (IN)||Eric Gordon All-Stars||Notre Dame|
|15||Tim Quarterman||6'-5"||180||Johnson (GA)||Atlanta Celtics|
|16||Kris Jenkins||6'-5"||225||Gonzaga (DC)||DC Assault|
|17||Sterling Brown||6'-5"||180||Proviso East (IL)||Mac Irvin Fire|
|18||Devin Davis||6'-6"||185||Warren Central (IN)||Eric Gordon All-Stars||Indiana|
|19||Josh Hart||6'-5"||180||Sidwell Friends (DC)||Team Takeover|
|20||Davon Reed||6'-6"||190||Princeton Day (NJ)||Team Final|
|21||Reggie Cameron||6'-7"||215||Hudson Catholic (NJ)||NJ Playaz|
|22||Greg McClinton||6'-6"||180||Hargrave Military (VA)||CP3||Wake Forest|
|23||Byron Zeigler||6'-6"||185||Community (MI)||Michigan Hurricanes|
|24||Paul Watson||6'-6"||190||Paradise Valley (AZ)||Compton Magic|
|25||Jamel Artis||6'-7"||210||Vermont Academy (VT)||Baltimore Elite|