Commentary

Under-the-radar point guards

Updated: March 17, 2010, 4:31 PM ET
By Paul Biancardi | ESPN Recruiting

The most important position on the floor is the point guard. It is the hardest position to learn and master because, a great point guard must be able to play the game and not only think for himself, but also for his teammates. As you watch the NCAA tournament you will notice the teams that get strong point guard play will have an outstanding chance of winning and advancing. The class of 2010 is talented and deep at the point guard position. Here are a few names that can be valuable to many college programs in the future.

[+] EnlargeJay Harris
Oswego East athletics Jay Harris' recruiting is wide open with Valpo and Virginia Tech among his favorites.
Brandon Young (6-3, 175)
Grade: 91 | PG Rank: 29
Washington D.C./Friendship Collegiate
College: DePaul

This scoring point plays the game with a high motor. He's not flashy, but is extremely productive in many categories. He is best in the open floor as he executes a fast break with a speed dribble that puts pressure on a defense. His strength lies in his ability to attack the rim to score as well finding and hitting open teammates if it presents a better opportunity. This past season, Young has improved his 3-point range and is now comfortable taking shots behind the line. He plays AAU for the successful Team Takeover and word has it that he will be released from his National Letter of Intent with DePaul and will re-open his recruiting.

Jay Harris (6-0, 160)
Grade: 93 | PG Rank: 22
Oswego, Ill./Oswego East
College: Undeclared

Harris possesses a great feel for the game as he plays the game one pass ahead by seeing the play before it happens. His ball handling and passing skills standout and he is a good decision maker with the ability to finish in transition and make plays one-on-one. Harris has improved his dribble penetration and finishes well in the transition game. His shooting skills are strong especially shooting the mid-range jumper and has the range and accuracy to be a consistent 3-point threat. Harris has the talent and basketball IQ to be a terrific college guard, but he must make the weight room a priority. Valpo, Ball State, and Virginia Tech lead the way for his services.

Quincy Taylor (6-1, 190)
Grade: 91
Wichita, Kan./Fishburne Military (Waynesboro, Va.)
College: Undeclared

This postgrad has some excellent tools for a scoring point guard. What is impressive is how he navigates his way through ball screens. When the defender goes under the screen he knows to shoot it or have the big man re-screen so he can get closer to the rim. Also on the ball screen, he attacks the big man's hedge with a low shoulder, good speed and drives the big while searching for open teammates in transition, only then will he look to score. In off-the-ball defense, he needs to be more engaged so he doesn't pick up foolish fouls. His academics are in order and his recruiting is still open.

Calvin Newell (6-1, 185)
Grade: 89
Wallingford, Pa./Evelyn Mack Academy (Charlotte, N.C.)
College: Undeclared

He is a scoring point, who can play the two guard easily as he is always in attack mode and equally dangerous with his dribble penetration or perimeter jumper. Newell's athletic ability and selfconfidence allow him to put up big numbers in any contest. When his 3-point stroke gets going he is capable to put a dagger in opponents. He is dangerous with the ball in his hands, but must become more adept at distributing responsibilities to run a team at the college level. Niagara and many mid-majors are knocking the door down while a few high majors are interested.

Chris Denson (6-2, 175)
Grade: 87 | PG Rank: 60

Columbus, Ga./Shaw
College: Undeclared
Denson is a left-handed speed demon that can create off the dribble and score. His length allows him to make plays over the top of the defense. He shoots it well enough to force his defender to stay close. He can take it out to the 3-point arc and can also finish at the rim. His superior quickness should enable him to be a good defender at the mid-major level.

Paul Biancardi is a veteran of the coaching ranks with years of college experience. He has recruited on a national level with stops as an assistant coach at Boston University and Boston College, associate head coach at Ohio State and most recently as an assistant at Saint Louis University. Biancardi was head coach at Wright State University from 2003 to 2006. In 2003, he was named Horizon League Coach of the Year. He is a selection committee member for the prestigious McDonald's All-America Game and the Gatorade Player of the Year award.

Paul Biancardi

Basketball Recruiting