Yesterday, we took a closer look at some of the most underrated scholarship-worthy players within North Carolina’s Class of 2020. Now, we will highlight a variety of different guys in North Carolina’s Class of 2021 that have made a strong impression over these last two months.
6’6 ’21 Ja’Dun Michael (The Burlington School)
This class of rising juniors is quite impressive from top to bottom, featuring guys that are polished, productive, and highly-coveted. However, Michael arguably encompasses those traits better than anyone else. He’s big, strong, athletic, but also possesses a remarkable amount of IQ, skill, and versatility as a wing/forward. Michael reliably creates for himself or others and is a go-to option that rises to the occasion in crunch time. He’s tough, leads by example, and will genuinely do anything to win. Michael scores the ball efficiently from all areas and doesn’t have any real holes within his skillset. It’s unsurprising to see him collect multiple offers in the recent weeks, as Michael is exactly the type of player and person that college coaches should want.
6’0 ’21 Breon Pass (Reidsville)
The lone two-sport athlete on this list is also the most decorated in terms of accolades and scholarship offers (including football). Pass holds about a handful of offers from both sports, which is very impressive, considering his dominance on the hardwood. He’s a smart, athletic point guard prospect with the all-around skillset to legitimately control the action on both ends of the floor. Pass has great footwork and anticipation on defense, both on and off-ball, which he utilizes quite regularly to overwhelm his assignment and force turnovers. He has an electric sense to his approach and simply knows how to affect every facet of the game just by doing what comes naturally. Pass is a terrific two-way leader that scores and makes plays for others at a consistently high level. He has a nearly complete skillset and should only continue collecting offers over the next year or so.
6’2 ’21 Brock Williams (Burlington Christian)
Although he’s already well-known, Williams is a player that has noticeably trended upward throughout the last calendar year. After proving to everyone that he’s a lethal bucket-getter, the quick-twitch lead guard set out to showcase his full arsenal and ability as a basketball player—not just a scorer. Since then, Williams has improved on all of his weaknesses while still maximizing his strengths. He’s shown the ability to be a point guard, making reads, being patient with the ball, and valuing each possession with a calm approach. Williams can easily go out and score thirty, but now does so with efficiency and within the team concept. He’s a high-level competitor that will go toe-to-toe with anyone. Williams is a sharp on-ball defender that does a phenomenal job of removing operating space and forcing opponents into making errant decisions. He recently picked up his first offer, Elon, but it appears to be just the beginning.
6’7 ’21 Keeyan Itejere (Grace Christian)
Anyone with any type of basketball sense should be able to see the clear appeal with Itejere, who has gone from “unknown” to “under-the-radar” in a matter of mere months. He’s long, rangy, and athletic, which is already enough to get excited about. Then factor in his growth, both physically and in terms of skill, and it’s clear that Division I coaches should be buzzing about Itejere. He’s fairly versatile for his size and his ball-skills seem to improve by the day. Itejere knows how to work on the block, rip-through and attack off the dribble, or carve out scoring opportunities through off-ball cutting. He has a decent-looking jumper that’ll continue to become more consistent with additional repetitions. Itejere is somewhat rough around the edges, but it’s easy to get excited about his continued growth, as he could be a special type of prospect.
6’2 ’21 Javonte Waverly (Henderson Collegiate)
There are a ton of quality guards within the Hoopstate, and Waverly is certainly among the best—regardless of class. He has a pretty excellent all-around game, but his IQ and savvy approach is what stands out above all else. As we’ve previously stated, Waverly always seems to be multiple steps ahead of everyone on the court and simply sees the game differently than most players. He’s a high-level playmaker with craftiness, vision, a tight handle, and the ability to get wherever he desires on the floor. Waverly is a respectable perimeter shooter that can heat up after getting in rhythm. He attacks the rim frequently and shows the ability to finish through or around contact, given his toughness and creativity at the rim. Waverly has really elevated himself into entirely new territory over the last few months and deserves to be regarded with the other top floor generals in the state.