Some may have heard of Brafford’s name, others haven’t quite caught on… that is ok. But we are here to bring readers to the attention of junior Nate Brafford’s epic season that he is putting on at Tuscola high school in Waynesville, North Carolina.
As a sophomore, Brafford had a solid season, averaging 13.6 points and 5.4 rebounds per game. But to see the jump he has taken from last year to this year is something truly remarkable. Averaging 39.4 points per game this season (according to Maxpreps), Brafford is simply putting on a show. Already with two 50+ point games under his belt this season, Brafford is quickly climbing up the scoring charts.
“It is pretty cool being one of the top scorers in the state/country right now,” Brafford said. “My scoring is what everyone is looking at but I’m just doing what we need to do to win. Everyone on the team knows their roles. For some, it is defense and rebounding but for me, I just have to do whatever the team needs at that point in time.”
Brafford’s confidence has sky-rocketed this season and deservingly so. He is shooting 67 percent from inside the arc and 46 percent from three this year, while also averaging nearly 12 made free throws a game. The work that has gone in over the months is now paying off in a big way for the junior.
“This season has helped me get a lot more confidence in my game,” he said. “I haven’t always shown what I can do but the hard work I put in over the summer is paying off. My mentality is just to stay focused and be relentless.”
Brafford would describe himself as a long, lanky, versatile guard that can be a shot blocker, play the stretch four as well as bring the ball up at the point. He also has been continuing to work on getting stronger, his ball-handling, his guard skills so he can play more of the wing position, and his defense for the next level.
As far as the next level goes, Brafford has received some interest as of late from schools. After a disappointing live period over the summer, it seems it has started to pick up.
“I have had some interest,” he said. “I didn’t play as well over the summer during the live period and my confidence was a little low. I’m ready for it to pick up during this spring and summer.”
Schools like UNC-Asheville, Appalachian State, Old Dominion, and Davidson have all expressed some type of interest, saying that they like his game and skill set but that he needs to get stronger and gain weight.
So far, he has been able to see each one of those schools but no official visits yet.