Each year, there are various players whose recruitment doesn't necessarily match their ability. This theme has become even more common since the uptick in transfers, coaching changes, and extra years of eligibility at the college level. However, it's still frustrating to see scholarship-level kids perform and see no real traction from college coaches. Take Caden Bell and CJ Alston for example. Both guys are no-brainers for a slew of programs, yet they'll open the season as an uncommitted duo. The majority of the NC GBB roster deserves more attention, but it's especially difficult to ignore everything this backcourt has shown.
Sure, Alston recently decommitted due to a coaching change; however, it's shocking that other schools aren't quickly getting involved. He's a tough, rugged, well-rounded guard who can initiate the offense or produce alongside another ball-handler. Alston is an excellent defender at the point of attack, utilizing a blend of quickness, physicality, and instincts to cause consistent problems for opponents. He rebounds well for his size, forces turnovers at a nice rate, and makes hustle plays whenever possible. Offensively, he penetrates well, gets others involved, and knocks down jumpers at a respectable percentage. Alston's steady, impactful identity should appeal to various types of schools.
On the other side, Bell has elevated his game to completely new heights over the recent months. He's always found production in every setting, but it's clear that he's taken a massive step forward as an overall leader. Bell naturally impacts all facets of the game, but he's gotten more aggressive and efficient over the recent months. He controls the game with IQ, pace, and a balanced approach. Bell does a great job of getting everyone involved while asserting himself as a scorer from all levels. Furthermore, his three-point percentage has consistently climbed, making him a legitimate scoring threat from everywhere on the court. Expect both guys to become serious priorities for next-level programs over the coming months.