Three-Point Play: Race for No. 1, Tyrin Lawrence, Georgetown transfers
In today’s Three-Point-Play, national analyst Corey Evans examines the three-man race for the No. 1 spot in the 2020 Rivals150, looks at Tyrin Lawrence’s various college options and discusses the landing spots for a pair of recent Georgetown transfers.
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THE RACE FOR NUMBER ONE
For the past year, Evan Mobley has stood as the top-ranked prospect in the 2020 class. He backed up that ranking when I saw him recently at The Classic at Damien. Simply put, there are not many prospects with his size, length, agility, athleticism and skillset.
In any other year, Mobley would be the undisputed top prospect. However, the 2020 class is different in that it boasts three can't-miss prospects at the front end of the rankings: Mobley, Cade Cunningham and Jalen Green.
I am not sure that there is a bigger winner or more versatile prospect in the 2020 class, outside of perhaps Scottie Barnes, than Cunningham. You tell him he can’t shoot, he goes and makes 38-percent of his 3-pointers during Nike play over the summer. You say he isn’t athletic enough, he is then doing an Eastbay in a game. His ceiling continues to raise.
Speaking of ceilings, no one has a higher one than Green. More than just an athlete, Green is the top entertainer in the 2020 class. It might not rise to the level of Zion Williamson or Lonzo Ball, but people come out in droves to see Green. His shot making acumen has gone through the roof, he has continued to get taller and his understanding of many of the complexities of the game is impressive.
So, really, maybe there is no right or wrong answer for who the best in the 2020 class. It might just come down to the eye of the beholder.
LAWRENCE NEAR A DECISION?
Could Tyrin Lawrence be ready to make his college decision so quickly after his “breakout”? That could be the case.
Lawrence, who calls Georgia home, has always been a quality scorer but his inconsistency and inability to create for teammates limited his recruitment to a degree. Plenty of mid-majors kept a close eye on him throughout the years, but things took off once he started a prep year at Sunrise Christian Academy.
Gonzaga jumped in with an offer just a few weeks ago, and programs such as Cal, Ole Miss and Vanderbilt quickly followed suit. Immediately, Lawrence scheduled an official visit to Gonzaga which he took over the weekend. What Gonzaga can offer that has intrigued Lawrence is a mid-year enrollment; he has already received the proper credits and test scores to qualify for college, which means he could be on a college campus in a matter of weeks.
However, he is not Mark Few’s yet. Mark Fox, who developed a good relationship Lawrence dating back to his days at the University of Georgia, has picked things back up him and is expected to visit Cal beginning on Friday.
It would seem that Gonzaga may be the program to beat but Cal might have a bigger need and a background with Lawrence that is measured in years compared to weeks for the Bulldogs. Look for a potential college decision shortly.
GEORGETOWN TRANSFERS FIND A HOME
One of the more surprising moments of the college season thus far was the transfers of James Akinjo and Josh Leblanc. The supposed keystone pieces to Patrick Ewing’s first class at Georgetown, they were expected to be the two most reliable producers for the Hoyas. Despite their departures, the Hoyas have looked great and look to be on the proper path to a return to the NCAA Tournament.
While the Hoyas have moved forward since their transfers, Akinjo and Leblanc have also found suitable landing spots. Akinjo, headed to Arizona, will likely be the replacement for Nico Mannion after this season. I could see Akinjo and Brandon Williams, who is recovering from a torn ACL, being one of the more deadly groups nationally next year.
Leblanc is a do-it-all forward that can defend all over the floor, rebound at a high rate and compete with a consistent motor. This sort of playing style should fit in seamlessly at LSU and Leblanc could be the ideal replacement for Emmitt Williams if heformer five-star decides to test his hand at the NBA in the spring.