July's Athlete: Emmanuel Mudiay

In the first of our summer superlative series, featuring an award to one senior in several categories, Emmanuel Mudiay checks in as the top athlete.

No one expected any less. Emmanuel Mudiay has received great acclaim for his athleticism reaching back more than two years, and he more than lived up to billing this month.

After an inconsistent few days at the Reebok Breakout Classic during the first live period, Mudiay found his stride at the Great American Shootout alongside elite junior guard Malik Newman. There, he showcased his sensational physical ability and, though unrelated to this story, demonstrated improved shooting accuracy as well.

But it was fullcourt speed assault that defined Mudiay's summer. He rounded out the month by enjoying some truly spectacular performances at the Fab 48, scoring at will in transition and off the dribble in halfcourt settings.

Mudiay's athleticism both derives and benefits from his strength. He's a power strider rather than a glider, moving most impressively in a straight line and without any awkward angles that would enable defenders to slow him. His balance also is excellent and maximizes the impact of his speed and quickness.

Laterally, Mudiay may possess the greatest defensive potential of any guard in the class. Again, part of that relates to size and strength, but he's quick enough to stay in front of guards several inches shorter and themselves possessing major quickness.

And for a guy known primarily as a scorer and secondarily a distributor, he's an all-around performer who utilizes his run/jump ability to construct a more holistic impact. His shooting stats tended to be poor on the Nike EYBL circuit, but he frequently notched big rebounding numbers even while not hitting the mark from outside.

Mudiay has that ability to make plays simply because he can and desires to do so, even with regard to functions that fall outside traditional point guard duties.

His shooting ideally will improve over time, but based on natural gifts alone he'll make an immediate impact at whichever school is fortunate to sign him.

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