Over the last week, we have put out numerous articles covering the Class of 2021 in the Carolinas. Today, we’ll shift our focus back to North Carolina and look at some of the notable rising sophomores at the point guard position. Each of the prospects we’ll look at in this article have already shown college-level ability, yet possess distinct differences from one another. This will be an ongoing series leading up to the high school season, highlighting five new floor generals each time.
(#1) 6’3 Cam Hayes (Greensboro Day/Team CP3)
It should come as no surprise to see Cam Hayes claim/share the first spot in our rankings, considering he would’ve still been in the top five of North Carolina’s 2020 prospects–had he not reclassified. The dynamic guard stood out at Chris Paul’s prestigious Elite Guard Camp, due to his ability to consistently knock down shots off the bounce or catch from all levels. Hayes’ transfer to Greensboro Day School will simply strengthen the roster of a powerhouse program, both for the short and long term futures. He creates well, especially in transition or when getting downhill and attacking opposing defenses. Hayes is a quality all-around athlete with sneaky-impressive bounce, which allows him to easily take advantage of most guards. There aren’t many guards more capable on both ends of the floor than Hayes, and he should be held in the highest regard by national media outlets sooner than later.
(#5) 6’1 Carter Whitt (Leesville Road/Boo Williams)
When it comes to creativity and poise, Carter Whitt has simply been in a category of his own for quite a while. This travel season, Whitt found a home with Nike-sponsored Boo Williams, and then finished the summer strong at Peach Jam. There were some growing pains, but that’s to be expected when playing up multiple levels against the county’s toughest competition. That being said, he’s displayed flashes of greatness throughout the last calendar year and received five Division I offers in that span. Offensively, Whitt understands how to breakdown opposing defenses and distribute the ball to open teammates. He’s not a particularly imposing athlete, but his deceptive ability to stop and start can really trick opponents. His IQ and vision combination is still quite elite, and he’s able to knock down shots whenever necessary. This upcoming season will be critical for Whitt and his recruitment, seeing as he will be the unquestioned leader of Leesville Road.
(#14) 6’0 Breon Pass (Reidsville/Team CP3)
The 15U age division is always an absolute bloodbath in North Carolina, because there is such a widespread amount of talent in the state. However, one could truly argue that Team CP3 has the strongest backcourt amongst all the big-time programs, especially when Breon Pass is involved. Their entire roster is lethal, but there’s something about the aggression and control that the lead guard attacks with. Pass is very quick off the dribble, able to blow by most defenders and then finish through contact at the basket. He displays solid playmaking instincts and understands how to play within the team concept. His attention to detail is noticeable on defense, where he shows natural abilities to move his feet and mirror opposing ball-handlers. Right now, Pass is the only guard on the team with a Division I offer, from East Carolina, but that list is likely to continue growing over the next few months.
(#56) 5’10 Tony Waters Jr. (North Mecklenburg/Team Charlotte)
Most people already know about the three aforementioned prospects, but Tony Waters Jr. should also be a name worth noting. He’s not flashy, just effective, and showed consistent leadership qualities over the summer with Team Charlotte. Waters’ ability to score is the main constant in his game-to-game approach, as he’s capable in forming to numerous different roles and finding a path to lofty point totals. He plays with a rather quiet demeanor and prefers to simply lead by example, willing to make the extra pass or hustle play whenever possible. Waters was Team Charlotte’s most polished scorer from April to July and it was pretty evident. It’ll be interesting to see how he fits with the new-look North Meck roster, which is shaping up to be full of quality guard prospects.
(#76) 5’8 Kadyn Dawkins (Eastern Guilford/Team Cobras)
The state of North Carolina is currently brimming with talent, both with high-profile prospects and guys that are more under the radar. Regardless, Kadyn Dawkins should be one of the better guards in Guilford County this upcoming season. We’ve seen him in numerous settings, but things quickly started coming together for Dawkins over the summer with Team Cobras. He’s small, but very crafty, and actually uses the lack of size to his advantage with his ability to utilize unique passing angles that other players simply cannot access. Dawkins is a solid shooter from distance and showcases a nice array of scoring tactics inside the paint. He was the leader of the Cobras. When he played well, the team outperformed expectations. Hopefully, that’ll carry over to the high school season, when Dawkins will look to emerge as a leader for an Eastern Guilford squad without Jaylen Alston and Montez Venable.